Townsend, Tennessee - Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Welcome to the Fishing Report.  It is cloudy and 22 degrees in Dry Valley.  I am at home.  Our internet connection is out again at the shop.  Actually, we have an internet connection, it is not working on our network.  We’ll get that fixed today.  The holidays are over or at least most of them.  The visitors have returned home.  Great Smoky Mountains National Park is quiet.  Now, begins the slow season in our vacation town.  Business will be slow, traffic will be light and most business owners and staff will get a break, except for me.  I’m going to be very busy this winter.

I checked the water temperature at the swinging bridge yesterday evening.  It was 43 degrees.  I’m guessing it is 40 degrees right now.  The low temperature in the valley tonight is supposed to be 17 degrees.  The high today should be 30.  I expect the water temperature to drop into the 30’s tonight.  Little River’s flow is 284 cubic feet per second (cfs) right now.  Median flow for this date is 341 cfs.  That is unusual.  For weeks, the flow has been above normal.  The river is not low.  The median flow is high. 

We rented a 7-bedroom home in the mountains for the New Year holiday and shared it with some of our friends.  Jack Gregory and Ron Becker were two.  They fished on New Years Eve during the day and did well.  They usually do.  And yesterday, after we finished breakfast they were back in the Park fishing again.  I don’t know how well they did.  It was cold!

If you go fishing today in the Smokies, use nymphs and get them down.  Also, don’t fall in.  It is going to be cold and windy all day.  I wouldn’t go.  Wait until this weekend.  It is going to be warm again with high temperatures near 60 degrees.  Fishing in the Smoky Mountains and all around East Tennessee will be much better then.

We started our website count over on Sunday.  The website and fishing report numbers you see on the left are for two days.  We ended the year with over 1.3 million visitors.  You are only counted once in a 24 hour period.  This Fishing Report was opened over 200,000 times last year.

It is fly tying time.  Whiting Farms told me they would have some saddle hackle available by the first of this year.  I placed an order last week.  I ordered a few Dyna King vises too.  We are well stocked with hooks and other materials.  I have some Metz necks on the way.  I hope this hair extension fad is over. 

Dry fly necks have been in short supply for months.  The saddle hackle that is normally used for tyers was bought and re-sold on the internet for way more than we could pay to tie flies.  That put pressure on the neck supply.  I ordered 8 or 10 Keogh necks last week.  I don’t expect to get any of them. They have not been available for months.  What a year it was for the fly tyer.  Those of you who had a good supply of hackle were lucky. 

I got an e-mail last week from a lady who is growing roosters for fly tyers.  She and her brother founded this chicken farm, for lack of a better word.  I don’t know her well but we have met.  She worked for another chicken farm, again, for lack of a better word.  So, we’ll see where this goes.  I told her to stay in touch with me and when they bring some hackle to market, we will be interested. 

Well, I better wrap this up and go to the store. 

Have a great day and thank you for being here with us.

Byron Begley
January 3, 2012

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