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Old 02-27-2011, 11:29 PM
FishNHunt FishNHunt is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Maryville,TN
Posts: 223
Default Inform me please.

When it comes to fly fishing Iím no expert but, in the same token Iím no rookie either. Iíve fished the Smoky Mountains since Iíve been able to remember. Iíve fished tail waters in N.M. and the cold tea colored waters of Maine. Iíve fished small free stone trickles in the park and raging torrents on the Nantahala. In all my years of fly fishing Iíve never been one to solely, singularly and regularly target super sized fish. I do however try to better my odds and fish when and where the bigger fish are more likely to take a fly. Iím happy with just fly fishing and I donít measure success by the size of the fish. With that being said I would like to raise some question to the guys and gals who rove above the streams, binoculars in hand searching for that one giant fish that they will tend to for hours if need be to procure a bite from.

Letís set up a mock scenario here for someone like myself. Iím fishing the WPLR and am catching a fair share of bows with a peppering of browns mixed in the bag. Iím using a #16 bead head pheasant tail with a #22 olive midge (my favorite combination). Iíve fished up to a large pool and before I make my first cast in I notice an honest to gosh 22 inch brown lying beside a bolder just off to and down stream of a fast riffle. What do I do?
  • Present the setup that Iíve been catching fish on all day?
  • Set down and tie on my ďgo to big brown bugĒ?

Iíve chosen A. and made a perfect presentation with a dead drift right off the tip of his nose. He did not respond but, is not spooked. Again I make the same presentation and have a flawless dead drift right threw his feeding lane with the same results. Do I?
  • Keep hammering away with this rig setup until he bites or I spook him.
  • Now switch to my favorite big brown bug?
  • Throw everything in the fly box at him at least once?

Now, I would choose B. and try that 3 maybe 4 times and then move onto C and make 3 to 4 ties with each until I spooked him.

What are some of the tried and true tactics that may help others like me drop everything and pass up water knowing that I could have a 30 fish day but, instead keep marching to find that one lone, super sized, gluten of a brown trout?
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Old 02-28-2011, 12:32 AM
mcfly mcfly is offline
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Southeast Tennessee
Posts: 73

Option 1)Something big, preferably with rubber legs, and a drag free drift that nearly hits him in the nose.
Option 2) Swing a giant articulated streamer right in front of his face.
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Old 02-28-2011, 08:05 AM
Corbo Corbo is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Sevierville TN
Posts: 494

Big fish react best to big food; and on the first presentation IMO.
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Old 02-28-2011, 09:27 AM
Crockett Crockett is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Maryville, TN
Posts: 740

Off topic but Fishnhunt were you fishing the wplr saturday and driving a red dodge ram pickup?
Adam Beal


Hey Jack (JAB)...
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Old 02-28-2011, 10:04 AM
narcodog narcodog is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 145

Maybe she wasn't hungry!!!!
If I saw such a fish I would throw what I normally felt comfortable with. If there was no reaction I would just sit there and watch that biggie and see what it was interested in. Then go from there.

You might step down on your leader size, bounce it off the bottom once or twice. If there still was no reaction I'd watch her some more.
There is one more thing in this equation and that is water temp to low of a water temp will kepp them from feeding.
I am a very slow and patient fisher person. I very well could sit there all day and work that one fish. I have done it on several occasions.

Last edited by narcodog; 02-28-2011 at 12:20 PM..
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Old 02-28-2011, 11:39 AM
wizard wizard is offline
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Townsend
Posts: 40

no idea what the go-to method is in this scenario, but there's a 20+" (obviously a stocker?) bow down here that had me hoping for the right answer to that very question saturday! I wasn't in the park of course, so i even cheated and swapped off the fly to a spinning rod w/ a panther martin and then even my daughter's hannah montana rod that i had fitted with a juicy worm on it for her. no dice...
"TO FISH, OR NOT TO FISH.... WHAT A STUPID QUESTION!" -Fishing buddy Lewis West

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Old 02-28-2011, 01:20 PM
jross jross is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: southern Indiana
Posts: 207

Are big fish of any species likely to react the same? For instance, this scenario is more likely for me to be a big ole bass in a pond....

Do big browns and big bass think alike? I'd assume they do somewhat.

In my opinion, the first thing I would worry about doing is spooking a big fish. And then I tend to think like Corbo. If the she's feeding, then she'll hit it the first time.

I've heard of big browns being caught on giant streamers all the way down in size to little nymphs. That leads me to think that it's stealth first, presentation 2nd, then subtle but spaced out changes in lure/presentation.

I am no trout expert, so someone correct me if my thinking is off....please! I wanna do it right if I get the chance on a big 'n
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Old 02-28-2011, 04:11 PM
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whitefeather whitefeather is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Bean Blossom, Indiana
Posts: 357

Wooly Buggers, Streamers, attractors!

I had nearly the same scenario happen to me on the "popular" stretch of the Davidson years ago. Nymphers, elbow to elbow just off the hatchery parking lot, I moved down to a fallen tree about forty feet away. Had no idea what to try. So I did what I always do on strange water, tied on an attractor (Royal Coachman wet) and cast to the other side of the river up against the tree trunk. Something swirled and moved downstream quickly to the riffle. It looked big. I let the wet fly drift down to the beginning of the riffle, water about a foot deep. When the fly swung around I twitched it lightly like an emerger trying to escape the waters film. Big brown that had swirled on the fly just minutes earlier, took it with a healthy gulp this time.

Twenty two inch brown. I released it and it swam away a few feet out of sight. I turned to cast back upstream standing in about three feet of water. As I stood there, the big brown swam back toward me and stopped between my legs. Talk about a smart fish. Safest place he could have gone. Up against that "new" tree growing in the middle of the river where no one could cast! LOL!

-don't tell me why we can't, tell me how we can.- whitefeather
Blue skies, warm gentle winds, and trout filled waters to all!
(Wilu Sgis, Wami Tsenitli Winidis, Ani Tiwuti Wiledi Weitas Do Ali!)
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Old 02-28-2011, 08:48 PM
FishNHunt FishNHunt is offline
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Location: Maryville,TN
Posts: 223


I havenít been on the Townsend side of the park yet this year. Once the river settles back to a reasonable flow I plan on roving around over there someone. I drive a black Toyota Tacoma 4 door with a white GHG and Tennessee Bear Hunters Assoc. sticker on the back glass. If you see me by all means stop and chat a while.

I know there are more numerous scenarios than could possibly be answered in a weeks worth of postings. What I was trying to ask is just a general scenario to the stalkers of the ďover 20Ē club. Iíve caught big trout donít get me wrong. Iíve caught them after spotting them and by shear luck. My most memorable ďspot and stalkĒ came where Slick Rock Creek enters Calderwood Lake. I got out of my boat and was tying on a double nymph rig when I noticed a large dark torpedo darting in and out of a feeding lane. I watched her for a fair amount of time and saw where she was feeding in the lane the most and observed that she was obviously feeding on something subsurface. I stuck with my current setup and made my approach. I low crawled to a flat rock that set 2-3 foot above the water. I laid flat on rock in order to stay hidden, only raising my arm to cast the fly. In this most awkward position it took 3 attempts to get the right drift. I could see the line entering the lane and the torpedo sped from the slack water and my line went tight. I set the hook and instantly knew this one had ďshouldersĒ and it would be only luck if I brought this fish to hand on the little 6 foot 3 wt I was packing. The fish took me into the lake and back to the riffles and then to the far bank where she made a half hearted attempt to hang me on some limbs. I was down to the last few final raps of the backing more than once. I held steady pressure on the fish until I finally broke her will and started taking up line. When she slid into my net I let out and auditable sigh of relief which drew a startling ďwowĒ from behind me. Seems a man and his girlfriend had hiked in and found me laying flat on the rock. At first they said they thought I was hurt but, quickly realized that I was fishing. They took my picture with the well over 18 inch rainbow and if I can find it I will post it to this thread. The ole gal took the #22 olive Midge which would be a miracle in itself to land a hard fighting fish on but, to land her with all these odds stacked against me made her one of my most memorable ďspot and stalkedĒ fly caught trout.
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Old 03-01-2011, 07:07 AM
JayB JayB is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 138

Great story FIshNHunt. I havent been fishing for trout for long, and had my first chance to sightfish to a big one last weekend. There were three of them, each at least 14 to 16 inch rainbows, in the tail of a pool. My heart has never beat so fast before! I tried fishing my regular rig, dropper/dry, and one guy nosed the dry but didnt take, then I hung up and broke off, and by the time I retied and tried again I spooked them. Came back a couple of hours later and they were gone. Still a great learning experience, and I hope to have a chance to do that again, it was thrilling.
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