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

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Welcome to the Fishing Report from the Great Smoky Mountains.  It is sunny and 67 degrees in Townsend this morning.  It will be mostly sunny all day.  Tomorrow will be cloudy with a good chance for thunderstorms.

I drove though town this morning and it is quite remarkable, how many new businesses have opened this year.  We all know business is slower than it was 10 years ago in our town.  Before the financial meltdown, business was booming.  We lost some businesses over the last two years.  Some have been replaced.  I hope they do well.

Little River is flowing low again.  Flow is currently 89 cubic feet per second (cfs) or 1.50 feet on the gauge.  Median flow for this date is 161 cfs.  The water temperature at 8:05 am is 67 degrees in town.  The water is cooler in the Park due to higher elevations and shade.

Fishing is good.  If you don’t believe me, look at the reports on our Message Board.  I don’t know if it’s just me, but I’m seeing more pictures of good-sized brown trout being caught in Little River this year. 

Today, fishing will be best early and late.  In the backcountry, you will probably do well all day on those shaded smaller streams.  Trout are taking dry flies.  Most anglers are using Yellow Sally Stonefly patterns.  Nymphs will fetch.  I would use a Green or Pink Weenie.  Ants, beetles and other terrestrials will produce too.

Rain is likely tomorrow.  It could be an opportunity for you.  Clouds and showers will be helpful to anglers.  Too much rain in a short period of time can be a negative if the rivers rise too much.  If you decide to go fishing in the mountains, be on the lookout for rising water.

You have until Tuesday to comment about TVA’s proposals for continued trout stocking in Tennessee, Georgia and Alabama.  They want to back out after 2016.  Right now, TVA is contributing about $900,000 to our trout stocking program.  If they back out, we don’t know what the end result will be and we don’t want to know.

I told them I wanted TVA to continue funding the stocking permanently after 2016, Option 4.  The more people who comment, the better our chances are our trout program will continue as it is now.  Let them know you want the trout funding to continue.  CLICK HERE to comment. It just takes a minute.  You don’t have to go into a lot of detail.  They will be looking at the number of responses.  You don’t have to make a compelling argument. 

Yesterday, I also sent Senator Lamar Alexander a comment directly from his website.  Senator Alexander is a fly fisherman.  He has visited our shop several times over the past 15 or so years.  He always goes to bat for the fishermen.  Recently, he got involved with the Corps of Engineers idea to limit access below their dams.  My e-mail to him was a thank you for supporting fishing in Tennessee.  Do the same thing.  Let him know we appreciate him supporting anglers in our State.  I’m sure, he’s working with TVA on this.  Tennessee Valley Authority is a federal government agency.

I saw something on our website yesterday I didn’t know about.  We are holding a beginner “Fly Tying Class” next month.  I do remember discussion about it a few months ago.  We are going to give it a try again.

CLICK HERE to learn more about this class.  I can assure you Walter Babb and Brian Courtney will get you started in this fascinating hobby.  They’ve been teaching our fly tying classes for years.  This is a test, to see if customers are interested in learning to tie during the Summer months.

I tie something just about every night.  I started a batch of Sand Shrimp to take to Florida this Fall.  Paula and I wore the fish out in Florida last month on Sand Shrimp.  This is my favorite pattern for saltwater, for just about any species.  They are especially productive when fishing for speckled trout and redfish.  CLICK HERE to learn how to tie them.  It’s easy.

Fly tying is not hard to do once you get the basics down.  Tying tiny trout flies is not easy for me anymore.  I shake too much.  I do well tying bass and saltwater flies.  They are big and not tedious to tie.  I like tying poppers too.  Actually, you make a popper, not tie a popper.  CLICK HERE to see how I make mine.

I hope all of you can get out on the water this weekend.  I’m floating one of the tailwaters for smallmouth bass Tuesday with Rufus and Josh.  I’m looking forward to that.

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

Byron Begley
June 7, 2014

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