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Thread: Prepping for my first trip to the Smokies

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    South Central Pennsylvania
    Posts
    51

    Default Prepping for my first trip to the Smokies

    I'm coming down in October. I'm stayin' at Smokemont, in the Oconaluftee River watershed. I'm a small stream fisherman at heart, it looks like in this watershed I'll have a lot of options w/in hiking distance from the campground. My father, who is coming with me, is a fan of "bigger" water (which is all relative I realize), so fishing the Oconaluftee appeals to him.

    I've never been in the area before, so we have very little idea of what to expect! I'm not looking for spots, I'm more interested in tactics. I'm already planning to fish Bradley Forks, do the hike up to several of its tribs. In PA, our small freestone streams are still a dry fly game in October. I fish mostly w/ royal wulffs, adams, and elk hair caddis. Sometimes I trail them with PT soft hackles. Most of our major hatches are over in the Fall, with the exception of caddis a few olives on our spring creeks. Will this be a dry fly or sub surface game for the middle of October? Anything I should be absolutely prepared for?

    I really appreciate this site already. If any of you are making the trek up to PA, please feel free to hit me up! I'll be glad to share any knowledge of local waters with you all.
    Thanks
    Squatch
    PS-Should I be concerned about the spawn? Our brookies and brownies spawn in the Fall, though they usually start later in October/early November. I certainly don't want to be fishing over spawning trout.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Tallahassee, Florida
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    906

    Default

    It can still be a dry fly game of epic proportions....weather is big factor. The flies you mentioned will all work at this time of year. There is still a terrestrial bite going on and don't be afraid to try something big...I love to fish a parachute madam X...have seen days where the trout will hit these things like a bream on a grasshopper...good luck and let us know how you do

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    South Central Pennsylvania
    Posts
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rog 1 View Post
    It can still be a dry fly game of epic proportions....weather is big factor. The flies you mentioned will all work at this time of year. There is still a terrestrial bite going on and don't be afraid to try something big...I love to fish a parachute madam X...have seen days where the trout will hit these things like a bream on a grasshopper...good luck and let us know how you do
    Thanks! I got no problems chucking big dries. I have some huge stimies that the Lancaster County brookies can't let alone. I'll be sure to stop in at Little River as well before setting up camp.

    What is the weather like in early October down there? In our mountains, we've seen snow as early as October (though it usually melts by morning). Is this a factor down there? We expect cooler, damp conditions in PA by this point, with overnight lows dipping as low as the 30s up in the hill country.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
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    Knoxville, Tn
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    Quote Originally Posted by The-Sasquatch View Post
    Thanks! I got no problems chucking big dries. I have some huge stimies that the Lancaster County brookies can't let alone. I'll be sure to stop in at Little River as well before setting up camp.

    What is the weather like in early October down there? In our mountains, we've seen snow as early as October (though it usually melts by morning). Is this a factor down there? We expect cooler, damp conditions in PA by this point, with overnight lows dipping as low as the 30s up in the hill country.
    The weather in October is anyone's guess. This year nothing has been normal and in October it can be snow/below freezing (actually that can start by late sept, or can be warm and summer like. I think several people can vouch for this, but orange dries are often a good bet in october

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    South Central Pennsylvania
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    51

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    We get a BIG orange caddis up in the central PA area (October Caddis). It's like, a size 12-10. Maybe I'll chuck a couple of these around, if orange works well.

    I wouldn't mind snow, I just don't want the criks to freeze up on us!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Knoxville, Tennessee
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    1,546

    Smile

    Quote Originally Posted by The-Sasquatch View Post
    We get a BIG orange caddis up in the central PA area (October Caddis). It's like, a size 12-10. Maybe I'll chuck a couple of these around, if orange works well.

    I wouldn't mind snow, I just don't want the criks to freeze up on us!
    Orange Caddis would be perfect. Might want a few in 14 I believe LRO sells an orange neversink also.

    And I wouldn't worry about the creeks freezing up, although if it is cooler, you better bring your nymphs

    And trying to guess what the weather will be around these parts could drive one insane. All I can really tell you is that and forecast more than 48 hours out will most likely be changed every 12 hours where they will still get it wrong in the end Somewhere between 15-85 degrees air temp, and 46-59 water temp is my best guess

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
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    South Central Pennsylvania
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    Well at least the water will be warm. I'll be looking for flies like orange never sinks when I stop at LRO.

    I'm really encouraged by the weather reports...thanks for that one, guys! Oh well. Might as well be realistic and well prepared.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    Crossville, TN
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    I would add BWOs to your fly list as the NC side can get some pretty good hatches of those little mayflies. All add a second (or third or w/e) to the orange caddis recommendation...
    "Then He said to them, 'Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.'" Matthew 4:19

    Guided Fly Fishing with David Knapp
    The Trout Zone Blog
    contact: TroutZoneAnglers at gmail dot com

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    South Central Pennsylvania
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    Wink

    I'll have BWOs (I always do!).I did read that your fall BWOs can be heavy sometimes! I like to use BWO comparaduns, and I have a few hi-viz BWOs as well.

    I"m glad no one is suggesting streamers

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
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    89

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    Quote Originally Posted by The-Sasquatch View Post
    I'll have BWOs (I always do!).I did read that your fall BWOs can be heavy sometimes! I like to use BWO comparaduns, and I have a few hi-viz BWOs as well.

    I"m glad no one is suggesting streamers
    Brown trout always like a nice streamer , you know that I will certainly be throwing some for Browns later in the fall.

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