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Beautiful River in the Great Smoky Mountains

The Fishing Report 04/08/18 Great Smoky Mountains National Park and East Tennessee
Time of Readings 5:41 am Eastern Time Zone : CFS=Cubic Feet Per Second
Fishing Gauge Indicating Fishing is Slow

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


45.7 Fahrenheit
2.70 Feet 531 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 5:41 am, the temperature outside is 35.8 degrees.

Today will be sunny with a high temperature in the low 50’s. Tonight will be cloudy with a low in the upper 30’s and a 30% chance for rain.

Little River is flowing at 531 cubic feet per second (cfs) or 2.70 feet on the flow gauge. Median flow for this date is 362 cfs. The water temperature is 45.7 degrees this morning.

U.S. 441 (Newfound Gap Road) is temporarily closed due to ice and snow.

The streams are flowing fairly high this morning. They will slowly recede today. You can fish, but be careful wading.

The water is chilly. It could have been worse. Last night was warmer than predicted.

I tend to be conservative when writing this report. I don’t want anyone to be disappointed. So, I am going to predict that fishing will be slow, due to high water and cool water temperatures. Both will change for the better, as the day progresses.

That does not mean you can’t catch trout in the Smoky Mountains. You can. I think nymphs will work best. I would use one or rig two with plenty of weight. I would use a Bead Head Pheasant Tail, Prince Nymph, Hare’s Ear, Tellico Nymph, or any reasonable Smokies pattern.

You will find strong current in many streams. Drift your nymph rig along the edges of runs. Cast short. Keep your line and leader tight so you can feel a strike. I would keep my fly line off the water as much as possible, to get a better drift. Do that by making short casts. You want your nymphs moving at the same rate of speed as the current.

The deeper water, near the streambed is moving slower than the surface water. Current slows due to friction, as it moves along the bottom of the stream. I believe you will get more takes near the bottom, where I think the trout will be, due to the colder water temps. That could change as the water warms today.

If your fly line or strike indicator, is dragging your nymphs at the water’s speed on the surface, you nymphs below may be moving too fast. That would seem unnatural to the trout. To entice them, you want your presentation to be natural. Keeping your fly line off the surface helps. If you are casting further, and your fly line has to be on the water, mending your line helps.  

You may see aquatic insects on the water, especially later today. You may or may not see trout rising to them. I would have a few sizes of Parachute Adams dry flies, just in case.

Check the generation schedule at Cherokee Dam on the TVA website. The link is below. See if that schedule works for you. It may.

Fishing in the Smoky Mountains will improve significantly, later this week. It will be warmer, day and night, especially Thursday through Saturday. We will see high temperatures in the 70’s to near 80 degrees during that period. The water will warm and fishing will be good. There is no heavy rain in the forecast, except maybe on Saturday.

I hope you can go fishing today. I would wait and go later.

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

Byron Begley
April 8, 2018

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USGS Stream Gauges

Abrams Creek Below Cades Cove    

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Lake Information and Tailwater Generation Schedules


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