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

Welcome to the Fishing Report.  This is a remarkable day in Townsend in the Great Smoky Mountains.  We had some snow last night, about an inch at our house.  The snow is soft and sticking to the trees.  It is beautiful here right now.  The temperature is 34 degrees so the snow is not sticking to the roads.  I like days where we get a pretty snow and the roads are fine.

The mountains are solid white.  There are some roads that are closed in the Park.  Laurel Creek Road from Townsend to Cades Cove is closed.  Little River Road from Sugarlands Visitor Center to Townsend is closed.  Highway 441 from Sugarlands to Newfound Gap is closed. The Dome Road and 441 from Newfound Gap to Cherokee is closed. These are temporary closures.  Check the Park Road Closure page on Twitter at for updates.

Little River is flowing closer to normal at 406 cubic feet per second (cfs).  Median flow for this date is 334 cfs.  The water temperature was 39.4 degrees at 7:40 am.

Fishing in the Great Smoky Mountains is going to be tough today.  First, the water temperatures are very cold.  The trout will be sluggish.  Second, most of the roads are closed.  I would consider walking into the Park, up the Middle Prong or West Prongs of the Little River.  That would be a great thing to do today.  You may not catch any or many trout.  But, what a super way to spend part of the day.  Don’t go too far in.  If you get wet you want to be able to get back to your truck fast.  Just hike a short distance or fish at the “Y”. Keep some extra dry clothing in your truck.

TVA is reporting they plan to shut down the generators at Norris Dam from 1:00 pm until 4:00 pm.  This is a long awaited moment.  They also say the generators will be off at Cherokee Dam from noon until 5:00 pm.  Check with the TVA website before you go.  This might be a good afternoon opportunity for a lot of anglers.  TVA may change their mind so check their site and be careful.

It appears Angler’s Spring will arrive next week on Friday.  The high temperatures will be in the low to high 60’s through Monday.  Lows at night will be in the 40’s maybe a little cooler Friday night.  It will take a few days for the water to warm up so don’t expect excellent dry fly fishing next weekend.  It may happen.  For sure, the fishing is going to be much better than it is now.  I think this is what we have been waiting for. 

Get ready with Quill Gordons and Blue Quills.  These aquatic insects have been hatching sporadically, especially on warm days.  This warm-up next week should bring them out.  Blue Wing Olives could be hatching too, so have some tiny dry flies to mimic that pattern.

I expect the smallmouth bass fishing in the lowland rivers to improve next weekend. 

But, right now, I’m looking toward the Great Smoky Mountains from my office window, and all I can see are a few buildings and snow falling.  The snow is falling hard right now.  I can’t see any mountains.

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

Update 1:00 pm - Little River Road and Laurel Creek Road are open according to the GSMNP Twitter Page. Watch for snow and ice. Cades Cove Loop Road may still be closed due to snow on the trees. Check with Twitter before you go. It is snowing heavy in Townsend right now. These roads that are open could close again.

Byron Begley
March 2, 2013

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