I've been a reader of this forum for sometime, never posted though. I love all the fishing reports/journals of trips into the backcountry. I've been to the SMNP numberous times but it is usually in the winter time and have never had great fishing luck.

I have a 1st time opportunity to fish the park the middle of next week and was hoping for some helpful advice. I'm not here asking for secret spots or anything, just some advice to make my short 2 days of fishing enjoyable.

I'm planning on camping at Elkmont, and day hiking up the little river. I don't have the right equipment to hike into the back country such as light weight tent, cooking equipment, etc. that's why I can only do day hikes for this trip. I've poured thru 3 books about fishing the smokies(plan on picking up Jim Casada's book when I stop by LRO), my back issues of Eastern Fly Fishing magazine trying to plan for this short but much anticipated trip. Was wondering if anyone can help me out with a few questions I've been unable to answer:

1) I was planning on showing up at Elkmont campground on Tuesday, May 4th, in the late afternoon. From what I can gather, there is no way to reserve a campsite this early in the year. Does the campground usually have tent sites available this time of year during the week?

2) For day hikes, would a different spike camp such as Cataloochee be better instead of Elkmont?

3) Will it be warm enough the 1st week of May to wet wade(I'm in central Ohio) or should I just plan on backpacking in my waders and boots?

4) Does anyone here have a CCW, do you carry in the park for security? (ps. I've never seen a thread on here or heard anything that would suggest there is anything to worry about in the park, just asking.)

I was planning on hitting the little river 1st day. Hiking upstream and start fishing around Husky Branch and work my way up to Fish Camp Prong.

5) Is this doable on a day hike

Any suggestions would be great, I love the area and can't wait to spend some time down there. Once I show up on Tuesday, I've got Wednesday and Thursday to fish. Then I have to be in Charlotte NC Friday afternoon. Was hoping to hit a couple of streams close to the road around Asheville NC during the day.

Thanks in advance,