Townsend, Tennessee - Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Welcome to the Fishing Report from Townsend, Tennessee.  It is sunny and cool this morning, 32 degrees.  The high today is going to be 65 degrees.  Yesterday’s high was 65.  And tomorrow the high will be 69 degrees.  This is still February.  What is even more remarkable, the low tonight will be around 51 degrees. 

The water is warming up in the streams of the Great Smoky Mountains.  This morning the water temperature was 45 degrees in town.  I expect that to be over 50 degrees tomorrow morning.  Flow is low in Little River.  It’s not really low, just lower than normal.  Right now the river is flowing at 234 cubic feet per second (cfs).  Median flow for this date is 357 cfs.

Fishing is going to be great this week.  This afternoon should be good.  The water is a little chilly this morning.  The higher the elevation, the cooler the water.  Sunshing and a warm rain tonight and tomorrow will turn up the btu’s and fishing is going to be great.

Quill Gordons and Blue Quills will be hatching among other insects depending on where you are fishing and especially at what elevation you are.  Trout will be rising to dry flies.  I would probably fish a Quill Gordon dry and drop a Quill Gordon wet fly off of that.  I would start with that combination this afternoon.

We are going to have some thunderstorms tomorrow and they could be strong.  Expect plenty of wind maybe up to 30 miles per hour.  That will make fishing tough.  Thursday looks much better unless we get too much rain.  We could use some water in the streams.  More rain will return on Friday and Saturday.  But the temperatures will be very warm and the streams will come alive.  This is an excellent week to be fishing in the Smokies if you don’t mind the rain.

Smallmouth bass fishing should pick up this week.  I know it will.  They get active when the water temperature rises over 50 degrees.  That is certainly going to happen downstream in most of the Smokies watersheds. 

Our boat is clean and ready.  I spent the day yesterday on that project.  Somehow I lost my device that hooks to the outboard motor, attaches to the water hose and allows me to run the engine out of the water.  I looked everywhere.  I was at the shop looking again yesterday and talked to Bill.  I told him I was going to Knoxville to buy a new one.  He told me to try Walmart in Alcoa. 

I go to Walmart maybe twice a year.  I didn’t think of that.  The Walmart in Alcoa had about two dozen of these things.  They were $5 each and I bought two.  Now, I’ll have three if I find the one I lost.

I don’t like crowded stores unless it is ours.  Yesterday that store was not crowded, everyone working there was very nice and helpful and the store is clean.  I know the manager.  We have served on the Chamber of Commerce Board together several times.  He runs a great store. 

The boat is spotless.  The motor fired up instantly thanks to the tune-up I gave it last Fall. I change the spark plugs, the oil filter and the oil more often than is recommended.  I probably do it three times a year. There is a good inventory of parts for a tune-up in my truck.

I saw a lot of folks pulling boats yesterday.  Hopefully they were going fishing.  Ronnie, our Police Chief drove by the shop with a fishing buddy on Sunday.  They were pulling a boat.  I happened to be outside the shop when they drove by.  I walked over to his house.  They had some nice walleye in the live well.  The boat belongs to another Townsend resident.  It was a 20’ G3 Jon with a 115 Yahama motor and an additional small kicker motor for trolling.  It was certainly a walleye rig.  Ronnie has two or three boats. 

Walleye fishing is a big sport around here.  And I don’t know many people who fish for them.  Peanut came by last week and told me about his walleye fishing recently.  Peanut has it down to a science.  He’s a big crappie fisherman too.  He said he pushes tobacco sticks into the lake bottoms and makes crappie attractors.  He said he has hundreds of waypoints on his chart plotter indicating exactly where the crappie attractors are. He told me he bought 1,500 tobacco sticks recently from a farmer who got out of the business.  He uses a long PVC pipe to push the sticks down to the lake bottom and into the silt. 

I run into Peanut’s father on one of the lakes I fish fairly often.  He fishes by himself and if you want to talk to him, you better be at the boat ramp at daybreak.

TVA is instituting new fees for marinas next year.  Some marina owners are saying they will go out of business.  I found several articles about this subject online.  Here is one in the Maryville/Alcoa Daily Times.

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

Byron Begley
February 28, 2012

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