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Thread: Streamer fishing tailwaters on zero generators

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
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    1

    Default Streamer fishing tailwaters on zero generators

    I'm from Knoxville and I had a guide tell me recently that it was essentially a waste of time to throw streamers when no generators are running -- so basically you can't throw streamers and wade. I was wondering if the board agreed or disagreed?

    I'm curious because I tend to mostly tightline nymph and when he saw my reel he said we'd have to rip that apart -- meaning my rig. I caught 3 fish in 8 hours with him on an indicator, then went back the next day and caught 10 fish in two hours tightlining -- not to say that indicator fishing doesn't have its merits, I just don't trust everything I was told now regarding streamer fishing.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Louisville, TN
    Posts
    538

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    Guides say all kinds of stuff, I would say throw whatever you want and if it ain't broke don't fix it. There's a guy on this forum that throws streamers in high elevation brook trout streams...... and it works

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Crossville, TN
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    2,397

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    Streamers definitely don't work on low water on our tailwaters...not at all! In all seriousness though, it may not produce the most fish, but you should just about always be able to catch at minimum a fish or two on streamers. I fish them all the time. High water, low water, you name it...
    "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

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    knoxville tn
    Posts
    223

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    If streamers don't work on low water then all those guys chucking lures on spinning rods are wasting their time too.
    Last edited by 77punk; 04-05-2017 at 07:45 AM. Reason: I'm having a rough mornin

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Maynardville, TN
    Posts
    115

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    Well most of the guys chucking lures on low water are wasting their time usually haha

    But I think weather, water levels and where you're fishing depends on how much success you'll have throwing meat on zero generation. Chucking streamers in shallow flat water on a blue bird day probably doesn't up your odds. 🤔

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    140

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    I have always done better with streamers on high water, whether freestone streams or tailwaters. I think the higher water gives the fish cover and they feel more comfortable coming out to chase bait fish. The higher water may move bait fish as well creating a type of hatch so to speak. Not to say that you can't catch fish under other conditions, but high water is ideal for streamer fishing.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    1,325

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    Will streamers work on low water, sure especially if it's rainy or early/late when light levels are low.

    Is it the best option to use? No

    I've always done well on high water with streamers and done fair on low water. It also depends on what you're calling a streamer. A size 10 booger will work most of the time but be less effective on high water. If you're throwing a 2/0 Sex Dungeon which is what I consider a streamer then high water is your friend.

    High water gives fish ambush cover and protection. They get more ballsy with a little flow and are more apt to aggressively feed

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
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    I tie micro streamers for water like that, leech and bugger patterns on a 12 or 14 hook, and have caught several 20 inch fish with no generators rolling. But I'm not a guide so you better just put on a bobber and keep nymphing.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Posts
    27

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    At last winter's Clinch River Chapter fly tying meeting of TU one of the flies demonstrated was a Guacamole Stick Bug, which is a sparsely tied small streamer that is known to be effective on the Caney Fork. The tier indicated it works well on the Clinch when wading.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Location
    athens, al
    Posts
    101

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    I don't own a boat or have access to one so all my tailwater fishing is wading exclusively. I'm also a streamer junkie and have had great luck on tn tailwaters when no generation was going....sometimes I can hit areas on falling water but mostly its on normal flow. I fish it like I do my smallmouth streams.....and they eat decent size streamers.



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