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Old 05-27-2012, 01:09 PM
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troutslayer3393 troutslayer3393 is offline
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Default Awesome Week on Hazel Creek

This Year I got invited to be a part of an annual 5 day trip into Hazel Creek. The forcast showed rain for the first few days so I made sure to pack all of my rain gear and several pairs of clothes. All 8 of us met up Monday in Waynesville to get a hearty breakfast at the Blue Rooster, then we were all off to Fontana Lake. We arrived at the boat dock around noon to catch a trip on Miss Hazel across the lake to the mouth of Hazel Creek.



Once we got all of our gear unloaded off of the boat and loaded onto our carts, we hiked 3 1/2 miles up to Sawdust Pile where we would be camping. No sooner that we pitched our tents and got our tarp set up the heavens opened up. It rained all night and partway into tuesday morning. The good thing about Hazel Creek and most streams is that if the water is high, which it was, you can always hike up and find smaller water that is much more managable to fish. On tuesday, I hiked about a mile up from our campsite and got in the water. I only got about an hour of fishing in and then it came a hard rain again. I did however manage to land several fish in the 8 to 10 inch range including this beautiful Hazel Creek Brown on a Green Weenie.



Wednesday was about the same as Tuesday as I only got a few hours of fishing in before it started pouring. I stayed around the campsite and caught a decent amount of fish before I decided to call it a day and warm up by the fire. I did manage to catch my biggest fish on the trip so far which was a 12 inch rainbow with Bug Eyes



When all of us woke up on thursday, the sun was shining and there wasn't a cloud in sight. We knew this was our last full day of fishing and most of us stayed out all day. I decided to start of fishing the lower part of the creek and walked 3 miles downstream before I started fishing. I spent a solid 6 hours fishing the lower section and brought 40+ fish to hand but none were of any size. I decided to head back up towards the campsite and fish some of the deep holes for the "Big Boys." I hiked 4 miles from where I was to a good stretch of water with some deep holes above the camp. Although I had been fishing dries and green weenies all week. I decided to put on a size 12 Golden Stone Nymph with a split shot to get it deep in search of some bigger fish. I approached a nice deep run and on the first cast I caught a hard fighting 14" brown which would have made the trip worth while in itself.



I was about to call it a day, but it was around 6 o'clock which is prime feeding time for fish IMO. So I walked up to a very deep long pool about a mile above Sawdust Pile (Hazel Creek regulars probably know which hole im talking about.) I threw a few casts with no luck so I decided to move my indicator about 6 feet above the fly. On the first cast I watched as my indicator slowly ticked as the fly was bouncing along the bottom and all of a sudden it stoped and jerked under the water. I set the hook and my 9 foot 5 weight rod double bent. I knew it was a good fish. The fish swam to the bottom of the deep hole and I could feel it shaking its head trying to free the fly from its mouth. Finally after 5 solid minutes of sitting there, the fish decided to come up to the surface, when I finally got a glimpse of the fish, my heart rate shot up and my adrenaline kicked in. This thing was HUGE. He pulled me all over that pool for another 5 minutes until I finally landed it. It was a Big Brown and I got an accurate tape of 20" on the fish. After a few pics, I released him and watched him swim slowly back into that deep dark pool from which he came.




This is my biggest fish in the GSMNP so far and it made the trip beyond my expectations. It also made me a little sad that I had to leave Hazel Creek and return back to the hustle and bustle of city life. Im definately going back next year and cant wait to fish it again!
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Old 05-27-2012, 03:42 PM
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David Knapp David Knapp is offline
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Now that's what I'm talking about...what a fish!!! It is amazing how a big fish can make a good trip into a great trip...congrats on a nice fish!
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Old 05-27-2012, 04:09 PM
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troutslayer3393 troutslayer3393 is offline
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Thanks! Big fish definately give you something to look back on. And make you eager to get back to where you caught them.
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Old 05-27-2012, 04:31 PM
Oldman Oldman is offline
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Thats the kind of trip people your age would consider boring. So good to see you had an unforgetable trip. Nice, real nice.
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Old 05-27-2012, 07:08 PM
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Troutslayer,

You did a really nice job on your report, made me feel like i was their with everyone.

I have been fishing Hazel since 1984 and have made that trip many many times over the years but never caught a fish as nice as the one you caught.

Congrates, sounds like the start of a new obsession.
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Old 05-27-2012, 09:43 PM
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troutslayer3393 troutslayer3393 is offline
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Thanks Mac, it is definately the start of an obsession. I think the trip also re-sparked my passion for flyfishing as a whole, which had been clouded by college golf and school.
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Old 05-28-2012, 12:29 AM
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Default Good job

Nice brown, good pics! Way to get r done!
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Old 05-28-2012, 01:07 AM
bamafisherlady bamafisherlady is offline
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excellent!!
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Old 05-28-2012, 11:19 AM
rbaileydav rbaileydav is offline
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great trip report thanks for bringing back some memories.

rbaileydav
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Old 05-28-2012, 11:23 AM
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duckypaddler duckypaddler is offline
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Talking Wow!

I've been wanting to fish & kayak Hazel for some time now. Your trip report makes it sound even more inviting.

Thanks for sharing
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