Townsend, Tennessee - Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Welcome to the Fishing Report.  The temperature was 25 degrees when I drove to the shop.  But, again, like yesterday the sky is pure blue.  This shade of blue is something you don’t see much during the summer but when the air is cold and clear we get this color here.  We see stars too.  The absence of light pollution creates this nightly view that people who live in cities don’t see.  Night skies in the Smoky Mountains are something to see and enjoy.  I’ve spent many hours laying on the ground and staring up into the sky.  I did that more when I first moved here.  I guess now I’m just used to it.

Little River is flowing with less water than normal.  Flow is currently 214 cubic feet per second compared to median flow for this date of 284 cfs.  The water temperature was 36 degrees at 8:30 am.

The trout are going to be pretty much inactive until this water warms up.  The high today is expected to be 60 degrees and each day for the next 7 will be warm too.  Anglers are catching fish.  I talked to a couple of the best Smokies fishermen I know yesterday.  They are catching a few but both claim it is slow.  A slow day for them is a good day for most people.  They’ve got it figured out. 

If you go fishing use weighted nymphs.  I did talk to one fellow yesterday who encountered a blue wing olive hatch and saw some trout rising to them.  We’ll see more hatches and active trout soon.  It appears we are going to have an early Spring.  One of our local guides told he yesterday morning he is convinced of it.  In fact, he is planning a two day flow trip down Little River in mid-March with some friends.  That could be a little early.  Or, it could be perfect timing.  It all depends on the water temperature.  A two day float down the river, passing through some excellent smallmouth bass water in the Spring sounds like a great idea to me.  When that time comes I’ll be on the lakes throwing Wooly Buggers and Stealth Bombers.  That reminds me, I need to tie some more Stealth Bombers.  I probably only have a little over 50 of them.

I’m expecting to see some fishermen out today.  And I think the Park will be busy.  Park visitation was up last year.  There is an article on the KnoxNews Website HERE. The Townsend entrance had a 3% increase.  That is close to the increase we have seen in our hotel/motel tax revenue since July.  Tourism is up and everyone around here is glad about that. The Smoky Mountain Convention and Visitors Bureau begins their year in July so we have almost 8 months under our belt so far. Also, bookings at our properties are looking good for Spring and early Summer. I did talk to one campground manager who commented that August booking look sluggish so far. I don't know why and neither did he.

Troutfest Banquet Ticket sales are strong. I'm going to buy ours today. Tomorrow our shop will buy a ticket for Joe Humphreys. Joe is our guest at Troutfest so we always buy his. Paula and I buy ours personally. I'm thinking we might sell out earlier this year. You should probably start thinking about buying yours now. They never sell out until the week of the event but this year could be an exception. Click in the box below to find out how to buy yours.

There is a lot going on during the Troutfest weekend. Book you rooms or cabins now. Don't wait. The largest motel in town is full already. I talked to the manager of the Airport Hilton on Tuesday. I told him we may be sending people to his motel and others in the airport area for Troutfest Weekend. We're going to have a packed house.  

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

Byron Begley
February 13, 2011

2011 Tennessee Trout Unlimited Summer Camp

Tennessee TU is sponsoring a week-long summer aquatic biology and trout fishing camp at Great Smoky Mountain Institute at Tremont. The camp will be held Monday, June 20 - Saturday, June 25 and is for middle school-age boys and girls. Cost of the camp is $465. Go to TU Clinch River Chapter website, for more information and an application.  Applications are due March 1st.  This is an opportunity of a lifetime for young people.

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Volunteer for Troutfest


Our fly tying classes will be offered in January and February 2011.   To sign up just call the shop at 877-448-3474.  You can read more on our website in the Schools Section.  The fly tying class schedule follows:

Saturday January 8 – Beginner Fly Tying
Saturday January 15 – Intermediate Fly Tying
Saturday January 22 – Advanced Fly Tying
Saturday February 5 – Beginner Fly Tying
Saturday February 19 – Intermediate Fly Tying
Saturday February 26 – Advanced Fly Tying


Our fly fishing classes will be offered from March to October 2011.   To sign up just call the shop at 877-448-3474.  You can read more on our website in the Schools Section.  The fly fishing class schedule follows:

Saturday March 26 – Beginner Day One
Saturday April 9 – Beginner Day One
Saturday April 30 – Beginner Day One
Sunday May 1 – Beginner Onstream Day Two
Saturday May 7 – Beginner Day One
Saturday May 21 – Beginner Day One
Sunday May 22 – Beginner Onstream Day Two
Saturday June 11 – Beginner Day One
Saturday June 25 – Beginner Day One
Sunday June 26 – Beginner Onstream Day Two
Saturday July 9 – Beginner Day One
Saturday July 23 – Beginner Day One
Sunday July 24 – Beginner Onstream Day Two
Saturday September 10 – Beginner Day One
Saturday September 24 – Beginner Day One
Sunday September 25 – Beginner Onstream Day Two
Saturday October 8 – Beginner Day One
Saturday October 22 – Beginner Day One
Sunday October 23 – Beginner Onstream Day Two

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