Fishing Report from Townsend, Tennessee in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and East Tennnessee.

Welcome to the Fishing Report from Townsend, Tennessee.  It is a little chilly outside, 36 degrees. The sun was coming up when I left home for work though not over the mountains at that time.  Right now the sky is blue for the most part.  Some white clouds are scattered around.  Great Smoky Mountains National Park is in clear view from here this morning. 

At the river it looks, smells and sounds like Spring.  Birds were chirping, Little River sounded perfect and this is going to be, what most people would refer to as a Spring-like day.  The high temperature should be near 63 degrees.  It is supposed to be mostly cloudy.  The water temperature in town was 46 degrees at 7:50 am.

We are going to be busy here today and hopefully tomorrow.  Walter is teaching a fly tying class.  That will start in about an hour.  Bill Hall and Tim Ivey will be demonstrating their fly tying skills.  Tomorrow, David Knapp will by demonstrating too.  All of these demonstrations are free.  Just show up between 10:00 am and 2:00 pm.  They stop tying at 2:00.  Come by and watch.  All you have to do is show up.

Little River is in great shape.  This is the level most anglers love.  Flow is 227 cubic feet per second (cfs).  Median flow for this date is 358 cfs.

Fishing is great.  You can read one account by a fellow on our Message Board here.  He fished yesterday and posted his report last night.  This is not your typical winter fishing.  What we had yesterday was Spring fishing.  Bugs were hatching and trout were rising to them.  The fish were ignoring nymphs and going for the dries.  Hatches of Quill Gordons, Blue Quills, Blue Wing Olives and Brown Stoneflies were happening in the lower elevations.  Daniel told me last night about the stories he heard yesterday.  I was up here working on the website’s fly line department and missed it all.

Everything is favorable to great fishing for now and maybe tomorrow too.  The moon phase is right.  The water temperature is warming up during the day.  If it is cloudy today that will be another benefit and it is supposed to be cloudy.  Don’t forget to take your Spring fly selection.  Have some early year dry flies in your box.  You may need to start with nymphs early until the water warms up some but be ready for the hatches. 

Tomorrow we will get some rain.  The rain will be warm in the lower elevations.  Fishing should be good again.  Then, tomorrow night the party will be over for a couple of days.  Rain and snow are likely.  The low tomorrow night will be in the mid-20’s.  It will warm up later in the week and the bite will be on again.  What a nice Winter we have had in the Smoky Mountains.  I don’t remember when the fishing has been better than it has this year.

I got an e-mail from Lefty Kreh. If you read yesterday’s fishing report you know that Lefty and Josh Pfeiffer will be taking some lucky person smallmouth fishing on the Monday after Troutfest.  We will auction that trip on Friday night.  I sent Lefty an e-mail and told him about the smallmouth bass fishing we have here.  Here is his reply.  I know he won’t mind me sharing this with you.

“HI Byron,
            Normally when I donate a day of fishing for an auction I just do it because it helps that organization. I am pumped about this one—you know smallmouths are my favorite and I look forward to seeing Josh's patterns and maybe he will enjoy seeing some of mine. I KNOW we will have a good time.
            Looking forward to coming down—as always.
                                                                                    All the Best To You and Paula,”


I love Lefty like a Father.  I told him that one time, recently.  His advice to me over the years has been right on and hugely beneficial to us, and our business.  Of anyone in the fly fishing business I have come to know, Lefty has been the most helpful to me.  He really does talk to me like a son. He cares about people very much. 

Once, Paula and I were at Lefty’s house.  She was sitting in his office in a black leather chair.  Lefty told her, “President Carter sat in that chair.” 

If there is one compelling reason to attend the Troutfest Banquet on May 18th, the chance to buy this trip is a once in a lifetime opportunity.  I wish I could afford it. 

I have not had a day off since Super Bowl Sunday.  I’ve only had two days off this year.  Last night I dreamed about our website.  I never dream, or I don’t remember if I do.  It’s time for a day off.  I will be at home tomorrow, tying flies and listening to Pink Floyd.  I will do the Fishing Report from home.  I’ll take the water temperature tonight.

Have a great day, thank you for being here with us, and do yourself a favor, go fishing.

Byron Begley
February 18, 2012


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