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Old 08-26-2009, 05:10 PM
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fourx fourx is offline
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Default Holston questions

Howdy,
I consider myself a somewhat veteran of our local tailraces and mtn. streams but strangely enough I fished the Holston the first time this past sat..
First off, what a nice river! Lush bottom vegetation and virtually no in/out river trash (unlike the soho!). Only fished a couple hrs. and brought 3 very chunky, heard fighting, and beautifully colored rainbows to hand. I lost/missed 4 or 5 more and saw several really nice fish rising randomly in slick water.
My questions are:
This river seems to have a rep for gullible trout. I was out of 6X and fished 7X seaguar and dang if these trout wouldn't borough in vegetation the second they got hooked causing me to lose some of them. Are these trout uncatchable on 4-5X?
I was also told that a standard bhpt is all one needs to get into these fellas. Should I be fishing ultra-realistic patterns like I do on the Clinch and SoHo?
Also, I noticed that this water is much warmer then any other tailrace I fish this time of year. Is it common practice to lay off these trout by late August? Does early morning fishing actually move the tailrace temp much?
Should I not even consider this river a prospect until late fall? Does the river lose a large volume of its trout population yearly due to water temps?
I know I should do my own homework by actually fishing this river but I don't want to "overthink" this river and I definetly don't want to strain these trout by fishing them anymore this summer if early morning fishing isn't a possibility.
If anyone wants the "lowdown" on the Clinch, SoHo, Smokies, or Watauga I'd be more then happy to help.

Thanks in advance,
4X
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Old 08-27-2009, 07:57 AM
waterwolf waterwolf is offline
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Originally Posted by fourx View Post
Howdy,

My questions are:
This river seems to have a rep for gullible trout. I was out of 6X and fished 7X seaguar and dang if these trout wouldn't borough in vegetation the second they got hooked causing me to lose some of them. Are these trout uncatchable on 4-5X?
I was also told that a standard bhpt is all one needs to get into these fellas. Should I be fishing ultra-realistic patterns like I do on the Clinch and SoHo?
Also, I noticed that this water is much warmer then any other tailrace I fish this time of year. Is it common practice to lay off these trout by late August? Does early morning fishing actually move the tailrace temp much?
Should I not even consider this river a prospect until late fall? Does the river lose a large volume of its trout population yearly due to water temps?


Thanks in advance,
4X
I have never fished anything other then 5X on the Holston, but that is just me. I also rarely if ever fish dries there either. IMO, and this is just me, but the Holston fish are by far the dumbest trout in this area. With that being said this time of year they seem less so, mainly because they are just trying to survive the warm water for another year. So no IMO they are not uncatchable on 5X, 4X is something I have never used mainly because I feel it effects drifts negativley.

I don't know where you fished, but I have never had the weed issues you describe with trout, I have had smallmouth further down get into the weeds as the weed beds (milfoil, elodea, and something that looks like turtle grass) are quite dense and span large stretches of the river.

A standard BHPT is all a man needs on the Holston IMO. In the early years we tried all sorts of rockworms and other caddis imitations, cranefly larvae, etc etc. Sure we caught fish on everything, but one thing proved to work ten times better then others. Now of course we tie our PT's differently then most, so maybe it does make a difference. You know what our PT's look like, so you should be fine fly wise.

The water has warmed for the year, the same as it does every year about this time. The fish will be fine if left alone, but if they are caught and stressed the likelihood of them dying is much higher.

The Holston is a good river and grows some nice fish, it is ditch like and somewhat ugly IMO, but nice to have around. IMO it does not grow near the quality of fish that the Clinch or South Holston are capable of producing.
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Old 08-27-2009, 02:29 PM
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fourx fourx is offline
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Thanks for your reply Jim.
I was introduced recently to Alex Taylor and he took me for the first time sat.
Where we go into the river I promised to keep secret and I will say that there wasn't one fisherman around us for the short time we fished. Alex pretty much mirrored what you said to me about the fishing (he was super helpfull) I just am an information hound and major trout freak.
I will say this: We fished a long section of riffles with a spring-fed stream coming in at the bottom of the run. I know you know where this is.
There was what I consider "healthy" water vegetation on the bottom not unlike the Henry's Fork and it was very present in the riffles and not as much in the slicks.
I thought the river was gorgeous in the area I fished.
You know, it's not the pigs I'm specifically after, it's the solitude dude!
It's incredible the way our tailraces and gsmnp have changed in the years! You've got to bring your own rock to stand on anymore. But, that being said, it would be selfish of me to rail on these fisherman that are crowding our rivers because it's just too good a sport.
Good to talk to you Jim, boy you've got a rep on this board!

4X aka Steve Staab
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Old 08-27-2009, 03:21 PM
waterwolf waterwolf is offline
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Originally Posted by fourx View Post
Thanks for your reply Jim.
I was introduced recently to Alex Taylor and he took me for the first time sat.
Where we go into the river I promised to keep secret and I will say that there wasn't one fisherman around us for the short time we fished. Alex pretty much mirrored what you said to me about the fishing (he was super helpfull) I just am an information hound and major trout freak.
I will say this: We fished a long section of riffles with a spring-fed stream coming in at the bottom of the run. I know you know where this is.
There was what I consider "healthy" water vegetation on the bottom not unlike the Henry's Fork and it was very present in the riffles and not as much in the slicks.
I thought the river was gorgeous in the area I fished.
You know, it's not the pigs I'm specifically after, it's the solitude dude!
It's incredible the way our tailraces and gsmnp have changed in the years! You've got to bring your own rock to stand on anymore. But, that being said, it would be selfish of me to rail on these fisherman that are crowding our rivers because it's just too good a sport.
Good to talk to you Jim, boy you've got a rep on this board!

4X aka Steve Staab

I know where you all fished and understand now the weed issues.
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Old 08-27-2009, 04:03 PM
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Petey Petey is offline
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Cool Funny

Thats funny.... I think the Clinch for the most part looks like a ditch but produces nice fish and the Holston a beautiful meandering river. Except for a couple of stretches that have that Clinch feel. Slow moving water (when the wheels aren't turning) with a lot of downed or uprooted trees.

I guess beauty is truly in the eye of the beholder.

I enjoy it that is for sure. Not sure what it is going to be like when a couple of those subdivisions are finally finished out and fully developed on the lower end. I hate progress.

Petey
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Old 08-27-2009, 04:54 PM
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The South Holston has got to be the trashiest river I've fished.
It's middle and lower portions have tires, bicycles, 100ft. sections of 1" pipe(?),sofas, and brown trout that fight like nuclear powered freight trains.

4X
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Old 08-27-2009, 05:07 PM
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Grannyknot Grannyknot is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Petey View Post
Thats funny.... I think the Clinch for the most part looks like a ditch
Each to his own I guess....sometimes when I look up and down the clinch, I think its one of the nicest tailwaters in the south.



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Old 08-27-2009, 06:11 PM
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Petey Petey is offline
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Default Don't get me wrong...

Granny, don't get me wrong. The Clinch is pretty. I was just ribbing Wolf with the ditch comment. But for my pallet there is just something more appealing to me about the Holston. Now none of them compare to the Upper Hiwassee starting at the powerhouse. At least from my view of things. We will leave the fishing out of it.

But this is really like comparing girls at a Miss America contest. Not a bad one in the bunch. it is just some like blond's other dig brunettes.
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Old 08-27-2009, 08:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Petey View Post
Granny, don't get me wrong. The Clinch is pretty. I was just ribbing Wolf with the ditch comment. But for my pallet there is just something more appealing to me about the Holston. Now none of them compare to the Upper Hiwassee starting at the powerhouse. At least from my view of things. We will leave the fishing out of it.

But this is really like comparing girls at a Miss America contest. Not a bad one in the bunch. it is just some like blond's other dig brunettes.
Rivers ARE like girls except I prefer one of the two to be dirty.

4X
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Old 08-28-2009, 06:52 AM
waterwolf waterwolf is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Petey View Post
Granny, don't get me wrong. The Clinch is pretty. I was just ribbing Wolf with the ditch comment. But for my pallet there is just something more appealing to me about the Holston. Now none of them compare to the Upper Hiwassee starting at the powerhouse. At least from my view of things. We will leave the fishing out of it.

But this is really like comparing girls at a Miss America contest. Not a bad one in the bunch. it is just some like blond's other dig brunettes.

You are right to each their own. The Holston is pretty drab in terms of the color of the bottom and the mud banks and so forth give it a ditch like feel. Nothing compared to the giant ditch which is the Cumberland.

Don't get me wrong, I do love the Holston, I made a living on it for the better part of 7 years and still haunt it quite often now. It just lacks the gin clear water of the clinch and the trout are not nearly as pretty there as they are on the Clinch IMO.

Naturally I am biased a little though, having fished the Clinch from 8 years old until now and it being the river I learned how to fly fish on, leads itself to being ranked a little above the other in my book.
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