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

Welcome to the Fishing Report.  It is very foggy and 53 degrees in Townsend this morning at 7:45 am.  Traffic is light.  Human activity is low at this time of day. 

Little River is flow at about normal.  This morning the flow is 299 cubic feet per second (cfs).  Median flow for this date is 266 cfs.  The water temperature now is 56.4 degrees.  Yesterday that number topped out at 59 degrees.  Fishing conditions are perfect.

Most anglers are doing best with nymphs early in the day in the Smokies.  Dry fly fishing is picking up later in the afternoons.  The temperature today will be warm, in the 70’s.  Then, showers and cooler temperatures will arrive tomorrow.  We may get some rain tonight but the chance tomorrow is 70%.  Sunday should be cloudy.

The cooler temperatures will continue through next Tuesday.  Then we will see warmth again. The cool spell should not have an adverse affect on the mountain streams or the tailwaters.  Fishing will be good off and on as it always is in our sport. 

Anglers are experiencing some great fishing in the Smokies.  Aquatic insects and trout are very active.  Mayflies and stoneflies that you don’t usually see many of this early are out in force.  Light Cahill and Yellow Sally patterns should be in your fly box.  Parachute Adams and Thunderheads are a good choice for a dry fly too.  Elk Hair Caddis and Neversink Caddis will work.  Most anglers are using Bead Head Pheasant Tails and Tellico Nymphs in the mornings from what I’m hearing.

I don’t know how this slight drop in water temperature has affected the smallmouth bass fishing in the lowland rivers.  I can tell you this, the lake fishing was slow yesterday.  I found water temperatures in the low 60’s in the creeks entering the lake.  Two weeks ago that number was 70 degrees.  At that time the bass and shellcrackers were taking poppers and other topwater flies.  Not yesterday.  I fished for 5 hours and caught 5 fish and none were bragging size.  I should have been fishing with streamers, a black Wooly Bugger or Puglisi Threadfin Shad.  But I wanted to find fish on the surface in the worst way.  Other anglers I talked to at the ramp had the same kind of day I did.  One of them was a fly fisherman.  I seldom see a fly fisherman on the lakes.  Usually, I’m the only one. 

It was a great day though.  The weather was perfect, there were hardly any fishermen on the lake and I covered a lot of water.  Still, the smallmouth bass were not hitting on top.  I’ll try again next week.  I think I’m going to do some river fishing until then.

The Great Smoky Mountains are beautiful right now.  This is my favorite time of year.  The landscape is green and lush due to the early warm weather and an abundance of rain.  I talked to a traveler from Main this week.  He could not believe the greenery. 

We are having great camping weather too.  Our area attracts a lot of campers.  Little River attracts a lot of people.

I washed the boat last night and the trees in front of our house dropped some sap on it overnight.  Thank goodness we have a self service car wash in town now.  I’m going to run down there and spray it off before the sun bakes the stuff on permanently.

Boats are a lot of trouble.  Getting ready to go fishing and unpacking after you get home takes a much time as you spend fishing.  Or that has been my experience.  Packing and unpacking is an enjoyable process.  Planning a fishing trip is as much fun as going fishing to me.  I guess that is why I like tying flies so much.  I tie every night.  Last night I tied three flies. 

Since I have more flies than I could ever use, I sell them here.  In the fishing room at our house where I spend most of my time, there is an 8’ long desk that I built.  The drawers and doors are simply cabinet units.  The top is 1” thick oak.  On the left side I have a iMac and high speed router.  We have Cat 5 wire connecting our computers to the router.  But, we also have wireless so our iPads pick that signal up too.

On the right side of the desk is the fly tying area.  It is well lit.  My vise is connected to an arm which holds it securely over my lap.  A waste container is attached to the vise stem.  Knucklehead materials a neatly organized on about 5 feet of the desk.  Of course there is a television and stereo in the room.  My music collection is on the Mac and the stereo is connected to it.  I sit in a leather chair on wheels.  So, when I’m waiting for glue to dry on a fly I can scoot over to the computer to look at a website or change songs on the stereo.

The setup also includes a leather sofa in case I need to take a nap.  All my hunting and fishing stuff is in that room.  The closet is filled with fly tying materials and boat equipment.  Our house was built using oak timber frame construction so big oak beams and a pine ceiling add warmth and a rustic feel to the fishing room.  The floors are pine.  I like my little room.  I think I’ll tie some flies in there tonight.

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

Byron Begley
April 20, 2012 

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