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Thread: New To Fishing in the Park

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Knoxville, TN

    Default New To Fishing in the Park

    Hello Everyone,

    I have been on several fly fishing trips to the park in the last few months. Five to be exact. I know that catching fish in the park is much more difficult than other places, but I am having some real trouble. Every time I go I tell myself that I am going to approach things a little different. Sometimes it works, sometimes it does not. Today I fished west prong, and up in the Treemont area. I was only able to catch one small bow. But my brother was able to pull out one nice bow. My question is what is the best approach to take. I have fished swift water, calmer water and everything in between. I know that its all about catching the right drift and staying invisible to the trout, but I feel like I am doing this and just can't seem to get the bites. I have used every fly in my box. The green weenie, neversink caddis, parachute adams etc etc. When you see a run that you want to fish, how do you approach it. How much line do you put on the water? Just looking for some pointers.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2008


    I'm about as good as you, but I have found I have more success on tail waters (and in the park in my case) if I have more leader and tippet. I used to fish about 9-10ft total and upped it to about 15 and have caught more fish. Just a thought.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Mid Tennessee


    A couple of tips. Watch out for trout lying at the tail of pools. Spook them and they will race up the pool putting all the trout on red alert. Minimize your false casts. I always shoot a length of line about equal to the length of my leader, so that no false cast goes over the spot I am about to drop a fly (I fish dry flies almost exclusively). Avoid bright fly lines. Avoid wading in the pool you are about to fish to the extent possible. Crunching gravel puts the trout on alert. Trout like to lie on the eges of current. while I will run a fly down the midddle of it, my first casts go to the edges of the curren. Hope this helps.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2006

    Default Also...

    Be careful what you wear, colors that blend with the surrounding or that are muted enough that they don't make you stand out against the background behind you. It is also good to walk softly and as much as is possible to avoid wading. If you must wade, do so extremely slowly which not only lessens noise, also can help lessen falls.

    There is a great little book called, "Curtis Creek Manifesto" that is a great instructional tool. You also might want to hire a guide for a half day or a day. They can help you hone your skills and even teach you a few things that might lessen your frustration tremendously.

    Last but not least as others have said, the less you false cast, the better. I have found in the park that it is more a case of "chuck and duck" than casting. Be sure as well to be careful to "pick up" your line as you begin to retrieve or before beginning your back cast. Do this by lifting the rod tip so as to lift as much line as possible off the water, which lessens the amount of disturbance of the water by the line.

    "Fly-fishing has many attributes, but none more pleasing than it's ability to liberate the young boy that still hides within me and to let that boy live again without embarrassment or regret, sorrow or anguish." Harry Middleton

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2009


    First of all, it aint you that is the problem. Those park fish are the most contrary fish in the world. They also all stick together in agreement.
    They are either all biting or not biting at all. What works on Monday won't work on Tuesday. Very picky fish. They have already decided what flies they will or will not bite before you even get there.
    One time I caught several fish in the pouring rain after being skunked for weeks. Don't give up!
    Gone fishing.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Waynesville, NC


    Fish with someone who has done it for a long time, or better yet, watch one of those people. Might be a good idea to try a guide. One trip could teach you good fundamentals to build on.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Knoxville, Tennessee

    Smile I often reread this....

    It is way more in depth than I could ever respond to. I also think that you have to stay relaxed and in the moment. I barely try to wade now, and pretty much try to keep most if not all of my fly line off the water. While I'm definately a newby, I am experienced in reading water and would be happy to go out with you sometime, as it was the kindness of others that have given me the knowledge to finally start catching goo numbers of fish. I can usually fish on Wednesdays and sometimes on Saturday. I'm sure you have already read the above, but it seems I get something new out of it every time I read it.

    Good Luck,
    James Locke

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Bucyrus, Ohio


    Also make sure that you fish late afternoon, I've fished serveral times early and mid day and had to work very hard for a few fish, but around 3:00 or 4:00 in the afternoon on the same water, fish would just turn on and start hitting drys on every nice section of water.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    30min from the "Y"


    As pmike says,the Curtis Creek Manifesto will teach you everything you need to know about catching trout from small streams.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Dickson Co. TN


    Where can you get that book,Curtis Cr. Manifesto?
    There are some good pointers to the questions posed by the original him I have only fished in the mountains a few times but I love going and plan on doing as much as I can in the years to's a challenge because the tactics are different than anywhere else I've ever fished.
    One thing I have had problems with is that a fish will hit or bump the fly without taking I missing the strike because I'm too slow or is the fish just messing with the fly and not really seeing it as food?

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