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Thread: Caney report from 6/2/07

  1. #1

    Default Caney report from 6/2/07

    My buddy (Blake) showed up at my house around 6:00 AM for us to start the ride over the plateau. We met up with his brother-in-law (Todd) just a little after 7:00 central, 8:00 eastern, at the Center Hill Dam, Buffalo Valley Road exit. TVA had shown no water to be released from 7 am to 5 pm.

    We put in at that Buffalo Valley put in just below Center Hill Dam in a blanket of fog amongst an army of canoes, kayaks and a couple of Hyde drifters. It was literally insane. There were a couple of homemade fishing rigs that beat anything I had ever seen before.

    Todd, caught the first fish of the day on a black rooster tail. Todd had never fly fished before, but was deftly skilled with spinning rig in his hand. He has bass fished his entire life, but this was all new. We had fish rising all around us and they continued to pitch rooster tails as I rigged up a double midge rig. I pushed us down river a bit to try to get away from all of the chaos but as I would come to find out as the day wore on that would be nearly impossible to do. There were people wading, floating, flinging, paddling and doing just about anything that was humanly possible to do in this river from the get go. So we decided we weren't going to get away from the masses so we just made do and fished to rising trout when we came across them.

    I was pulling fish out on my midge set up, while all Todd and Blake had to show for there efforts was the one little Brown they caught earlier on the Rooster Tail. They finally both had me hand them a long skinny stick. So what went from being a listless day of floating and fishing turned into Fly Fishing 101. But with-in 10 minutes of handing Todd a fly rod I had him hooked up with his first trout on a fly rod. After that he was hooked. He must of hooked and landed 15 trout before noon and he missed many more. He landed a couple of quality fish in the process. He landed a nice fat Brown along with a nice fat Bow. ( I will post pictures later, Blake took them and they are presently on his camera). I too continued to land trout between rowing and working around all of the people in the water. Blake also was able to land a couple of trout as well.

    It got to be about 1:00 when TWRA stopped us, made us show them our licenses and prove we had proper flotation in case the current-less water threw us from the boat. I hadn't ever floated this upper section of the Caney so I wasn't really sure what was ahead. But I hadn't seen any current at the present time that made me think I wasn't going to have to row hard. We had to be back at the house to meet the girls at 5:30 in Mt. Juliet. So that meant being at the boat ramp at 4:00. So I started to row. We would stop occasionally and fish to pods of rising trout but they became more and more stubborn and elusive as the midday sun continued to climb. Also there was a lot of stagnant water I was having to row through. The entire time Todd was just in amazement at the number and size of trout in the water. It seemed around every corner there was a man with a stringer that was full of 15" - 18" rainbows. We probably counted 30 or more full stringers throughout the day, and there were at least 100 + people wade fishing.

    We came across a loan fisherman in a Hyde that was nice enough. We made small talk and threw a few pointers our way that we listened to eagerly. He said he had seen my boat before, asked if I was from Knoxville. Come to find out he use to live in Knoxville and fished the Clinch quite a bit. He was rowing Ian Rutters old boat, a Hyde. We talked about the Caney a bit and how he had never seen it this crazed with the crowds before. We said our good bye's and floated on.

    We finally cleared all of the mad chaos and had happened upon a sweet section of river that wasn't being over fished that happen to hold some seriously large trout. You could look over the side of the boat and see these brutes scatter. I told the boys in the boat that if you want one of these fish you are gonna have to get rid of the strike indicator. That wasn't received so well. So I showed them just what I meant. I easily anchored the boat in the smooth water and made a cast down stream about 30 feet off the nose of the boat to where I had seen the back of a rather impressive fish break the water. I fed line as my midges drifted and kept an eye on my slowly sinking leader. My leader had sank about half way to my fly line when I saw a silvery flash and rest of the leader disappear. I lifted the rod tip and felt a pull. It was on. I landed a fat bow a few minutes later and was instantly peppered with tons of questions. What did you see? How did you know? Did you feel it? Could you see him the entire time? I tried to answer them to the best of my ability but in end just said, "Hey, you boys are gonna have to get your own gear and just go fish"

    We rowed out from there and was able to make it home on time. We had caught fish, each of the guys had landed a trout on a fly rod and we just had a blast letting the hours of the day slip away down the river.

    You can't depend on your judgement when your imagination is out of focus. - Mark Twain

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006

    Default Caney Chaos

    Nice post Petey,
    I have never fished the Caney. I grew fishng for bass with hardware, the flyrod has a bit of a learning curve but well worth it. It has a very calming effect on me just the rythm of the whole process. Need to get over there! I wonder if the fishery can sustain all the kept fish. I suppose it has so far.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Murfreesboro, TN

    Default Nice to Meet You Petey

    I had just dropped my partner in crime off at Lancaster and was trying a few new patterns out when you drifted by. It was a pleasure to meet you and put a face with a name. Next time you want to come this way let me know, maybe we can hook up and
    take my boat. That way you wouldn't have to drag your boat all that way. I skipped this Saturday's crowd, however I may slip out tomorrow for another shot at 'em.

    BTW: That looked like a nice fish you had on just after you passed by me ;^}

  4. #4

    Thumbs up Good to meet ya Luke

    Good to meet ya too. When I passed ya I was prepared to keep rowing until we got to the boat ramp because I knew we were pushed for time. But the guys in the boat kept seeing those trout scatter and were freaking out. So I had to give them a chance.

    That trout I landed was not real long, maybe 15-16", but it was fat as a football.

    I was really impressed with the fish quality of the river. The sluice gate they have added has done wonders for those trout.

    I don't get up that way as much as I like, but the next time I do I will give you a holler!

    You can't depend on your judgement when your imagination is out of focus. - Mark Twain

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