Townsend, Tennessee
June 13, 2009

Welcome to the Fishing Report.  It was foggy earlier but the sun is shining now.  The forest is damp from the rain yesterday.  Little River is up from normal but it is not too high to fish.  And it is dropping.  The water temperature is 64 degrees in town.  There were a lot of people riding bicycles this morning.  And I’m not talking about people on the bike path.  I mean serious cyclists on the road.  Tubing is picking up too.  The donut regatta is back.

Fishing is good.  It is especially good in the evenings.  A lot of bugs are hatching just before dark but the Yellow Sally Stonefly is the fly I would fish.  As the water begins to warm up you should probably think about fishing the higher elevations.  We are not at that point yet but it’s coming as we move into summer.  We are at the point that fishing is better early and late. 

I would use dry flies with a dropper during the day or go deep with nymphs. Areas of the Park are going to be crowded.  The road to Cades Cove will be closed today at noon for a 75th Anniversary event.  The Knoxville symphony will play in the Cove.  Lamar Alexander will be playing the piano with them.

The unique species of fireflies are mating I guess, at Elkmont.  That draws a lot of people, so many in fact you can’t drive to Elkmont in the evenings unless you are camping.  You can take a shuttle from Sugarlands.  So, stay away from Cades Cove today unless you are there for the concert and don’t go to Elkmont in the evenings unless you are there to see the fireflies.     

I’m sure you all read the Tennessee Department of Tourism e-News.  Of course you did.  If not here is the link:

Big news in Knoxville, I-40 will re-open June 12th.  That was yesterday.  Under the title “Americans Warming up to Travel” the newsletter reports more Americans are planning a vacation this year.  And due to economic or financial concerns people will be looking for less expensive motels, spending less on eating, reducing entertainment costs, taking fewer trips and spending fewer nights away from home.

I like the idea that less expensive motels will do well this year.  A lot of my friends own less expensive motels in Townsend.  I think they are all family owned except maybe one of them.  I was at one of the older Motels the other day watching the owner paint his swimming pool.  These old motels that have been renovated here have a charm about them that takes me back in time. There is no telling how many nights I have stayed at the Talley Ho.  Since we moved here the Talleys have become some of our best friends.  Michael and Maria are third generation operators.  They are a lot younger but they treat me like a buddy.  Michael’s parents are also close friends.      

There is a small article about the Elkmont Cabins.  The Park Service plans to restore and preserve 18 of the 74 remaining structures and use them for interpretive exhibits about the logging camp that was once there.  The clubhouse formerly known as the Appalachian Club will be available for day-use rental.  It didn’t say this but the Park got a chunk of the economic stimulus money and I bet they are going to use some of that for the renovations.

Some surprising news appeared in the Newsletter.  “The National Park Service reports that visitation to Great Smoky Mountains National Park was up 22.6% over April 2008.  All entry points recorded an increase.  This brings the year-to-date numbers up by 5.7%.”

I guess that supports the notion that people are taking vacations closer to home.  The Smokies are within a one day drive of 1/3 of the population in the United States. We are going to spend our vacations this year in the Great Smoky Mountains.  I’m looking forward to that.  I love the Smokies. 

Not only is our vacation destination only two miles from our home but our accommodations expense is only utilities and property taxes.  What a bargain.

Have a great day and thank you for being here.

Byron Begley
June 13, 2009


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