I was able to get up to the S. Holston yesterday morning for a few hours and to fish on my birthday. It was raining pretty hard for most of the morning. However; the fishing was spectacular and they were very actively feeding.
I quit counting at 30 as it was starting to task me. This river is amazing! Fish rising all around you the whole time.
There was sporadic hatches of BWO adults and most never made it off the water. Dry fly and emerger BWOs worked very well. Really, I think you could throw about any pattern on this river and do well. Except for brassies; I have never caught anything there with those flies.
However; I took most of my fish on my BWO/Black Fly Pattern I posted a few weeks ago. One variation; I did not weight it with lead or metal bead. I used a gunmetal glass bead to keep it light and to allow it to float high. Most of you that fish the S.Holston ripples know why and it helps keep the fly in the fish's snell window.
I did notice some odd observations in contrast to previous trips.
-I caught about 35% rainbow trout. That is more than my previous trips.
-Most of the trout I landed were smaller than my previous trips (12" or less).
-I did not land anything larger than (12"-13") inches.
*I also noticed several brown trout feeding on smaller fish and carrying them in their mouths. Here is a video of one of them:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gf1DlzgOATM
Great river and great morning on the river!