Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 18

Thread: November Brook Trout Adventure: Part One

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Crossville, TN
    Posts
    2,397

    Thumbs up November Brook Trout Adventure: Part One

    November is the time that my work guiding starts to slow down, and I am able to usually take some time for myself beyond a few hours here and there. Accordingly, I scheduled a camping trip with my two cousins, Nathan and Luke, for the first weekend of the month. Fires were already burning in the area, but we were fortunate enough to enjoy full access to the Park and fish waters that are now inaccessible. Hopefully the trails are cleared and reopened soon, but until then, here is a story of our adventure to get you thinking about warmer weather and hungry brook trout!

    We arrived at various times, but were all excited to get on the water. Nathan's favorite thing to do is fish for brook trout, while Luke had not really fly fished before. We decided that would be our goal for the trip.

    Before heading out, we did a quick casting lesson for Luke. He picked up the timing and motion very quickly and we were ready to fish!


    Photo Courtesy of Nathan Stanaway, ©2016

    Day one found us hiking into a well-known brook trout stream. Things started off well as I caught a gorgeous fish on my new toy. Before I go on, I have to say something about this new rod. I have always said I preferred longer rods, but finally broke down and got this little 6' 3 weight Redington Butterstick glass rod for small brook trout waters. On the streams we fished, a longer rod would have definitely been more efficient, but wow was the little Butterstick fun! Definitely not the best tool for the job, but maybe it was the best tool for the most fun... My all time favorite rod is an OLD Orvis Superfine 8' 4 weight and this rod was every bit as fun as that rod. Here is my first catch on the new toy!


    Photo Courtesy of Nathan Stanaway, ©2016

    Glad to get that fish out of the way, it was time to get Luke on some fish!


    Photo Courtesy of Nathan Stanaway, ©2016

    His first fish was really small. He enjoyed it as much as some of the big bass and bream he has caught on a spinning rod though. Once, during one of our days of fishing, I asked him what he thought of fly fishing. He said it was great, because he enjoyed the stealth component, sneaking around, stalking the fish, and presenting just the right cast. With the low water we had, it was true ninja fishing!


    Photo Courtesy of Nathan Stanaway, ©2016

    Once Luke caught a fish, it was Nathan's turn. He is very good at this type of fishing, and is really an excellent fly fisherman, especially considering he only has the time to get out once or twice a year.


    ©2016 David Knapp

    He caught some fish quickly although nothing particularly noteworthy. As we kept fishing, we finally realized that my first catch would be the best of the day. For some reason, this particular stream only wanted to produce small fish for us on this particular day. I know the larger specimens are around, and I'm also certain that the low water was not helping our cause. For day two, we would make some changes that would hopefully help improve the fishing!

    The highlight of day one was right before our lunch break. Luke saw a beautiful large pool and decided to go fish it on his own while we started eating. He picked the spot, made the cast, and caught a fish all on his own without any help or guidance.


    ©2016 David Knapp


    ©2016 David Knapp
    "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

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Crossville, TN
    Posts
    2,397

    Default November Brook Trout Adventure: Part Two

    The next morning, we woke up early and decided to make a run to the top of the ridge to enjoy the sunrise. We all jumped in Nathan's car and were soon flying uphill with a surprisingly large number of other people who apparently had the same idea. The smoke on the North Carolina side was thick and added an interesting component to the sunrise.


    ©2016 David Knapp

    Before long, we headed back down the mountain to prepare breakfast and get ready for hitting the water again. After some delicious breakfast burritos in camp, we headed out with a new destination in mind. This particular stream is in a very steep drainage. The plunge pools were perfect for fishing during low water times. High water would probably be scary here though!

    We started up the stream after hiking in, intending to fish beginning a short distance upstream. As were were jumping from rock to rock, I happened to glance over and saw a nice fish finning in a small pool. I froze in time to avoid spooking it and quickly made a short cast. Sure enough, it was a nice brook trout!


    ©2016 David Knapp

    We continued on upstream, moving slowly and usually spotting fish first and then sight fishing carefully from some type of cover. As long as you kept your head down, the fish were generally willing. Let them catch a glimpse of your shadow, however, and it was all over.

    Nathan finally got in on the action with a beautiful brook trout of his own. This fish was nice enough that he finally agreed to a photo of one of his catches.


    ©2016 David Knapp

    Luke was doing very well also for his second day of fly fishing. He caught fish methodically each time his turn came up. His accuracy was improving and he was enjoying fishing for brook trout in the Smokies! I think it is fair to say he will join us again on another camping trip as soon as possible.


    ©2016 David Knapp

    I found a couple of the most beautiful brook trout that it has been my good fortune to encounter, and I've seen some amazing fish over the years. The colors were incredible with these fish since they had just finished up spawning. One thing I should mention here, is how important it is to avoid walking on gravel this time of year. We stayed off of all the sand and gravel parts of the stream that had any possibility of having been spawned in. This can be tough to do on these small streams, but it is essential to the future of these special fisheries!


    Photo Courtesy of Nathan Stanaway, ©2016


    ©2016 David Knapp


    ©2016 David Knapp

    Here are a couple of shots of us fishing on this drainage. If you've fished here, then these will be a dead giveaway. If not, then continue exploring and you will find these hidden gems in the Smokies!


    Photo Courtesy of Nathan Stanaway, ©2016


    ©2016 David Knapp

    To wrap up the trip, we made an evening run up to Clingmans Dome. Nathan had never been up there at night. With the haze from the smoke, I wasn't sure if the stars would be very good, but I never turn down an opportunity to go up there. As it turned out, the haze made for an interesting scene!


    ©2016 David Knapp

    I'm hoping that the Park heals quickly from the burn and we can be back to fishing some of these drainages again quickly. Until then, I have some great memories of my last trip there!
    Last edited by David Knapp; 12-18-2016 at 07:32 PM.
    "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

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    172

    Default

    Wow! Terrific post!

    Saw your article on Flipboard a few days ago. Nicely done.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    Chattanooga, Tennessee
    Posts
    38

    Default

    Digging the new butterstick bro! I've always used my 8' 4 weight Orvis Superfine Touch for specs, but I'm tempted to get a 6' or 6'6" 2 weight sepecifically for the fun! Glad y'all had a memorable and productive trip.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Maryville
    Posts
    1,103

    Default

    Great stuff. Thanks for sharing.
    My posts are worthless without pictures

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Knoxville, Tennessee
    Posts
    1,549

    Talking

    Nice stuff! Glad to see you getting a chance to post now that your season is slowing. And even managing to keep on sharing your passion with other while off

    Great pictures as always, and on a positive note we won't have to worry about all those leaves in the stream

    Keep the posts coming
    Call me if you want to go fishing, boating, hiking, or if you want to buy a foamie
    www.foamiefriends.com

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Birmingham, AL
    Posts
    243

    Default

    Wonderful pics and write-up (as always)! So, i'm assuming if this is part 1, there's a part 2 looming?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Crossville, TN
    Posts
    2,397

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by AL trout bum View Post
    Wonderful pics and write-up (as always)! So, i'm assuming if this is part 1, there's a part 2 looming?
    Sorry for the confusion. Part two is just the second post in this thread since there is an image limit for each post.

    Thanks everyone for reading and for the kind words!
    "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 2014
    Location
    athens, al
    Posts
    101

    Default

    great as always david! those lil buttersticks are a lot of fun to cast too!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Harvest, AL
    Posts
    4

    Default

    Great pictures David! I agree that short rods are a lot of fun. I'll have to give the Butterstick a try.

Similar Threads

  1. November Trout Month TN/NC 2015
    By BRAFF in forum Fly Fishing for Trout in Other States
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 12-05-2015, 12:34 AM
  2. Shenandoah National Park Brook Trout Part 2
    By softhackle in forum In The Backcountry
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 09-02-2014, 11:24 PM
  3. 6/5/14 Brook trout
    By Fishballard in forum Smoky Mountain Fishing
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 06-08-2014, 09:41 PM
  4. Native Trout Road Trip - Part I
    By WVBrookie in forum Fly Fishing for Trout in Other States
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 08-21-2010, 08:11 PM
  5. KY Brook Trout
    By eku_brookie_biologist in forum In The Backcountry
    Replies: 22
    Last Post: 12-24-2009, 04:03 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •