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Beautiful River in the Great Smoky Mountains

The Fishing Report 04/18/18 Great Smoky Mountains National Park and East Tennessee
Time of Readings 5:58 am Eastern Time Zone : CFS=Cubic Feet Per Second
Fishing Gauge Indicating Fishing is Good

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


50.5 Fahrenheit
2.49 Feet 416 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 5:58 am, the temperature outside is 65.5 degrees.

Today will be sunny and warm, with a high temperature in the upper 70’s. Tonight’s low will be in the mid-40’s. Tomorrow will be sunny again, but cooler, with a high in the low 50’s and a low tomorrow night in the mid-30’s. Friday through Sunday will be warm. Showers are predicted Sunday afternoon and night.

Little River is flowing at 416 cubic feet per second (cfs) or 2.49 feet on the flow gauge. Median flow for this date is 266 cfs. The water temperature is 50.5 degrees this morning.

Except for a couple of chilly mornings, this is going to be a beautiful week to fly fish for trout in the Great Smoky Mountains. Fishing conditions are good and they will remain through the weekend. The streams are flowing on the high side of good. The water temperatures will be good all week.

This is the time to be here.

Trout are actively feeding. You do not have to worry about matching the hatch most of the time. The aquatic insects are varied and active. Trout may be feeding on top or fishing could be best using nymphs. Experiment yourself to find what works best. Nymphs may produce best on the two cool mornings this week. Dry flies will likely produce later in the day, on those days.

I would go armed with Parachute Adams, Elk Hair Caddis, Smoky Mountain Candy or any reasonable dry patterns. I think you will do best using #14 and #16. Most nymphs we normally use during the Spring will work. I would keep it simple and use the standard Prince, Hare’s Ear, Tellico or Pheasant Tail nymph patterns.

Shaded areas in streams are becoming a little easier to find in the lower elevations. We have leaves sprouting down here. I still think fishing will be best late in the day. I can only image what is happening at dusk, on Abrams Creek right now.

You may see some Yellow Sally stoneflies on the water. You will see more as April moves into May. By all means, try a Yellow Sally Stonefly pattern. They may work well. Trout in the Smokies love yellow. Our best selling Yellow Sally pattern is a Neversink Caddis in the size #16. I know, it is a caddis. The trout think it is a stonefly. That fly produces well in the Spring and exceptionally well during the Summer and early Fall.

Tennessee Valley Authority is blessing anglers with more friendly flows on the tailwaters. Look at the Norris Dam generation schedule today. Check Cherokee Dam. The links are below. Both the Clinch River and Holston River, below these dams are great trout fisheries. Always look at the TVA website, on the page of the river you plan to fish before going. Generation schedules are subject to change.

Wildflowers are showing their colors on the forest floor. Look around and you will find them. Wild ferns popped out of the ground in the woods around our house two weeks ago. Now, they have grown to be adults again. They are everywhere. Dogwoods are in bloom. Trees are bearing leaves. It is beautiful here right now. Spring-like weather is finally here once again, hopefully to stay.

May is just a few days away. May is my favorite fishing month in the Smokies. There are so many options. Of course, there are trout. “We’ve got lots of trout streams”, over 800 miles of wild trout streams in the National Park. There are more in the many National Forests that border the Park, many more. We have many tailwaters, with excellent trout fishing on several.

Smallmouth bass will be active soon, in the lowland rivers and lakes. They will be active on the tailwaters.

Smallmouth bass will move into the shallows on our lakes in May. We have nine large lakes to choose from. Paula and I usually tow our boat to a couple of lakes that are close to home, on the Little Tennessee River.  

White bass should still be spawning in the lower reaches of the lowland rivers.

Bluegill and shellcrackers will be spawning soon.

I am scheduled to be off for two weeks beginning a week from Saturday. I plan to fly fish every day. Daniel will be writing the Fishing Report while I am off.

I can’t wait!

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

Byron Begley
April 18, 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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