Townsend, Tennessee - Fly Fishing in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, East Tennessee and Western North Carolina

Welcome to the Fishing Report.  It is foggy, frosty and 29 degrees in Townsend this morning. It feels and looks like a typical Winter day.  The sun is beginning to burn off the fog.  This week is going to be sunny and cold until Friday, when rain is expected.

Little River is slowly dropping.  Right now the flow is 639 cubic feet per second (cfs).  Median flow for this date is 293 cfs.  The water temperature at 8:05 am was 43.1 degrees.

Fishing is going to be slow in the Smokies due to the cold water.  The water is going to become colder as the week progresses.  The low temperature tonight and tomorrow night is predicted to be 18 degrees. 

If you go fishing today, use nymphs with plenty of weight.  Pinch on one or more split shot a few inches above your fly.  Present your offering on the bottom of deep and slow moving water.  The trout will be congregating there and they won’t go far for a meal.  Their metabolism is moving slow.  They don’t need much food.  Put your fly right in front of their noses. The trout will also be avoiding current, which requires energy to remain in place.  They won’t be expending much energy until the water warms.

You can catch trout under these conditions but you will have to work for them.  Don’t expect to be catching these fish hand over fist. 

TVA is scheduled to be generating at Cherokee, Douglas, Norris, South Holston, Tims Ford and Watauga Dams all day.  They are trying to lower the lake levels in these secondary impoundments.  Check their schedule online before you go.  The schedules are subject to change.

I’m working like crazy on the website.  Yesterday I spent most of the day working on the fly department in the online store.  I’ll probably spend the whole week on that project.  So, if you visit there, you will see it is under construction. 

Something new we are doing is sorting the Smokies trout flies by seasons, Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall. Then, in the main website I’m working on 13 new pages that will describe what flies work best each month with links to the appropriate fly selections in the online store.  There will be links from this Fishing Report to the monthly fly pages.  The whole thing will be similar to a hatch chart but with a lot more information. 

There are other new fly categories such as Tailwater Trout and Smallmouth Bass.  I will be taking a lot of fly photographs over the next week or two.  In this office we have a macro photography setup that is always ready to go.  There are three flash units hooked up to a Digital SLR with a macro lens that shoots at f32 for maximum depth of field.  I try to blow the background out to solid white.  That is hard to do sometimes, especially if the fly has a lot of white fibers or pearl Krystal Flash.  These fly components disappear against a white background with three flash units triggered simultaneously.

Photographing flies can be frustrating at times. 

It is about opening time so I better go.

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

Byron Begley
January 21, 2013

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