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

Welcome to the Fishing Report from the Great Smoky Mountains.  It is cloudy and 52 degrees.  The flood watch has been lifted.  It never happened.  In fact, we got almost no rain at all in our part of the Smokies.  All of that bad weather barely moved around us.

Little River is flowing at 247 cubic feet per second (cfs) or 1.97 feet on the flow gauge.  Median flow for this date is 235 cfs.  The water temperature at 7:55 am is 60 degrees.

This is going to be an awesome weekend.  High temperatures will be in the 70’s.  Lows in the mid 40’s to low 50’s are expected.  There is no rain in the forecast. 

Get ready for some super spring fly fishing in the mountains.  If you cancelled your reservations because of the flood watch, re-book and come on down, or up. Though the water levels are a little higher than normal, you need to be careful not to be seen by the trout.  We are going to have lots of sunshine over the next few days.  If you cast a shadow over the water where you are fishing, you will spook the trout.  Wear muted clothing and stay hidden as much as possible.  Try not to wade much.  Stay out of the water when you can.  Sending ripples spooks the trout too.  

Here you will find excellent dry fly and nymph fishing all weekend long.  You will see many different species of aquatic insects on the water.  After all, this is May.  I would use a Parachute Adams, Yellow Parachute Adams, Neversink Caddis or Elk Hair Caddis.  If you want to nymphs fish, try a Pheasant Tail or Green Weenie.  A Prince Nymph is always good.

I don’t think it matters much which fly you use.  The trout’s metabolism is going to be in high gear.  They will be hungry.  The water conditions could not be better.  Activity will be high. 

The ten-day weather forecast is very encouraging.  Next week there is a very small chance for rain and it will be warm with lows in the low 60’s and highs in the 80’s.

People ask me which month is the best.  When is the fishing best in the Smokies.  I always say May.  In May we have lower chance for cold weather.  The water levels are usually very good.  The water temperatures are usually perfect.  May is always our busiest month in the shop.  This is usually the best month to plan your fishing trip.

Paula and I always take a week off in May to go fishing and we are doing just that next week.  Daniel will be writing this report every day, starting Sunday.  I’ll be back Monday May 12th.

Our business association, The Townsend/Walland Business Alliance will meet at 4:00 this afternoon.  This is going to be fun.  We are meeting at the new Cades Cove Cellars Winery.  We will tour the plant and learn how they make the wines.  We’ve been told to wear warm clothing, it’s cold back there.  Then, we’ll go to the front store and taste wines. 

The Townsend/Walland Business Alliance is fairly new.  We have a website and you can view it by CLICKING HERE.  I haven’t been to many of the meetings lately.  It’s not because I don’t want to.  It’s because I’m busy at work.

I was with Michael Talley yesterday.  He is a very close friend and also happens to be our Mayor.  I told him I was about to embark on a total re-do of our online store.  I said it would take hundreds of hours.  He looked at me as if I was making something up.  Then, I told him the store has 2,000 pages.  His eyes flew wide open.

This is a huge website.  Just think about the Fishing Report Archives.  I started archiving the fishing reports on this exact date in 2009 in the box below.  That’s 1,800 pages right there.  I have no idea how many pages are on the Message Board.  There is so much information written in these thousands of pages, it would take forever to read it all.  I actually have Word Documents of the fishing report going back further than 2009. 

But, we have several thousand different people visit this website every day.  Yesterday there were 4,170 visitors.  Of those, 735 visited this Fishing Report.  Those 4,170 visitors opened 34,954 pages in this website.  And yesterday, we had 77,507 hits.  I think a hit is a click but I’m not sure.  I look at visitors and page views every morning.  I never look at hits.

My plan is to spend 30 to 40 hours per week, all year, improving this website.  I’ll spend the rest of my work-week doing the bookkeeping and other stuff.  This is not going to be my most fun year out of the 20 I’ve been doing this job.  But, I think it will be the most productive from a business perspective.  Some of that work is boring and repetitious.  I am tenacious.  I can do 8 or 9 hours of boring work, go home, then, start again the next morning. 

I think you will see a big difference in this website 10 months from now and it will begin to show improvements this week.

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

Byron Begley
May 1, 2014 

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