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P.O. Box 505
Townsend, Tennessee 37882
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Beautiful River in the Great Smoky Mountains

The Fishing Report 04/06/18 Great Smoky Mountains National Park and East Tennessee
Time of Readings 5:55 am Eastern Time Zone : CFS=Cubic Feet Per Second
Fishing Gauge Indicating Fishing is Between Slow and Good

Water Temperature Little River
Stream Flow
Rainfall 2018 YTD Knoxville Apt
Rainfall Normal YTD Knoxville Apt


48.2 Fahrenheit
2.16 Feet 271 CFS

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

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Welcome to the Fishing Report from Townsend, Tennessee in the Great Smoky Mountains. At 5:55 am, the temperature outside is 34.3 degrees.

Today will be fairly warm, with a high temperature in the low 60’s. It will be breezy. Rain will move in later this afternoon or tonight and continue through Saturday. Tonight’s low will be in the low 40’s and tomorrow’s high will be in the mid-40’s. Saturday night will be cold, in the upper 20’s. Sunday will be sunny and cool.

Rainfall tonight and tomorrow could amount to ¾” or more.

Little River is flowing at 271 cubic feet per second (cfs) or 2.16 feet on the flow gauge. Median flow for this date is 381 cfs. The water temperature is 48.2 degrees this morning.

The fishing conditions today and through the weekend are not going to be perfect by any stretch. I would call these conditions “fair”. I think the water will be warm enough for decent trout activity. Water temperatures are OK right not but not great. Saturday night will be cold. Water temperatures will fall. Fishing may be slow Sunday.

The rain will likely play into our fun this weekend too. If we get over an inch of rain in the Smokies, the streams will rise and could be stained.

If you are planning a trip here soon, and your choices are this weekend or next weekend, I would wait and come next weekend. Unless the long term forecast changes, next weekend could be perfect. Rain is predicted next weekend, but it will be much warmer. The water will be warmer.

I am looking forward to writing about excellent conditions and excellent fishing. So far this year, that has been tough to do.

If you go this weekend, nymphs will probably work best. You may see hatches. I think Blue Wing Olives are your best bet, considering how much those bugs love bad weather. Then, I wonder if trout will be rising to them. They water may be high and the water may be cool.

Wet flies and soft hackles may work too. They represent emerging aquatic insects, below the surface. A Hare’s Ear wet fly is a good choice. A dark colored soft hackle is another.

CLICK HERE to read a good article, explaining the soft hackle fly on the MidCurrent website. I am an avid reader of the MidCurrent site.

I started tying and using soft hackle flies during the early 1980’s. I was having trouble catching trout at times, in shallow, slow moving water, on the Caney Fork River in Middle Tennessee. At the time I lived in Nashville, and fished that river almost every weekend.

My fishing buddies and I were reading books written by Gary LaFontaine. Most fly anglers were talking about Gary. His book, Caddisflies made a huge impact on the way I thought about fly fishing for trout. I learned to tie his caddis pupa patterns. Those flies worked then, and still produce now.

I started tying soft hackle flies, which are simple to tie. My favorite was, an olive body that resembled a caddis, with a partridge feather wing. I used these flies in that slick water that had frustrated me for so long. I would cast these flies upstream and across, let them drift with the slow current, and watch for movement in the area where I though my fly was drifting. If the water moved, I set the hook, and caught lots of trout.

Often, trout took the fly near the end of the drift, as the fly moved toward the surface, or when I was retrieving it back to make another cast. I learned to slowly retrieve the fly upstream, at the end of the drift, and caught many trout that way. I also broke off a lot of trout doing that, but learned to use a light hookset. I suppose the trout thought they were seeing an emerging caddis.

Whatever those trout thought, it worked.

We do not sell many wet flies or soft hackles at the shop. Most fly fishermen today use either nymphs or dry flies.

Maybe you should consider using these emerger type flies. Maybe you already do.

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

Byron Begley
April 6, 2018   

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