Townsend, Tennessee - Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Welcome to the Fishing Report.  The sun is shining and it is going to be hot again today.  There is not much traffic on the streets.  I counted 9 cars on the way to work.  I did leave home earlier than usual.  Little River is getting low.  I stepped on a rock this morning when I took the water temperature.   I have not stepped on that rock all year.  This is the first time I have noticed it actually out of the water.  I think Little River is at it’s yearly low.  Flow is 117 cubic feet per second (cfs).  Median flow for this date is 168 cfs.  There is no chance for rain today or tomorrow and the chance is slight for the three days following. 

I have not heard anything bad about the fishing.  Most people know they need to be on the streams at daybreak and in the evenings.  And we should use fine tippet.  We should stay hidden and blend in.  Smaller flies will work best.  Anything yellow is working.  That could be a Yellow Elk Hair Caddis or Yellow Sally Stonefly pattern of some sort.  I would use a #16.  Terrestrials are fare game for trout at this time of year.  Beetles, ants and inchworms make up a substantial part of a trout’s diet during the Summer. Bill and I were just looking at the glass door exit to our fire escape.  In webs and on the glass are several different varieties of mayflies and a Yellow Sally.  The mayflies are all various shades of cream colored and in different sizes from tiny to rather large.  The stonefly is a #16. 

The higher you are in the mountains the cooler the water will be.  Smaller shaded streams are a good choice. 

We need rain.  I hope it doesn’t come in the form of a hurricane.  That would be awful considering the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.  It is supposed to be cool here tonight, 63 degrees.  That is close to normal.  

For the first time in a long time I checked the Drought Monitor and the U.S. Seasonal Drought Outlook.  Everything looks fine here.  We are not abnormally dry and there is no drought expected.  I guess this is a temporary situation and there is no reason for concern.  I still wish it would rain for a few days.

I talked to a guy yesterday who is coming to our area in July.  He wanted me to tell him what the fishing would be like.  He wanted to catch some trout.  That’s a tough one.  I mentioned the fact that water could be low and warm.  I told him about the tailwaters in our area.  I talked about fishing in higher elevations.  But, I don’t know what the fishing will be like in July.  It could cool off and we might have higher water.  Or maybe neither.  Fishing success in the Smokies depends on both.

I’m tying a new fly that looks like a shad but it is much faster to produce than a Puglisi.  I’m using white marabou for the tail and wrapping the hook using Pearl Chenille.  The color is pearl.  I am making a few extra wraps up near the head to give it bulk.  Then I trim the chenille fibers to form a flat area to glue on hologram dome eyes.  Next, I use a gray marker and darken the back of the baitfish all the way back into the marabou.  The final step is to mix up a little 5 minute epoxy and using a tooth pick, apply some to the eye sockets and the thread wraps at the head.  I’m waiting a minute for the glue to set up then using another tooth pick I place an eye on each side.  The whole process takes very little time.  And this fly looks killer.  It is tied on a Gamakatsu stinger hook in sizes from #6 to #2.  It will be used for smallmouth bass, white bass and stripers.  If it works I’ll take pictures and show how it’s done.  I think it will work.

There is an organization in Tennessee called Pride of Place (POP).  The mission is to legislate a 5 cent deposit on all bottles and cans.  Currently we are paying a litter tax on these containers and under the proposal by POP that would be eliminated.  They have a bill in the State Legislature, it’s been there a while and it is currently in a non-action status.  This deposit has been in place in several states and evidently it works to keep litter off the roads and out of the rivers.  POP says it provides jobs and saves oil.

I’ve been asked to look into this and possibly support it in our County and State.  I believe the Tennessee Council of Trout Unlimited has signed on as a supporter.  I’m just looking into it at this point and don’t have a lot of knowledge.  You can visit POP’s WEBSITE HERE.

Here is how I think it works.

The beverage distributor pays the initial 5 cent deposit into the bottle-bill fund along with a 1/8 cent container-recovery fee.

The beverage distributor gets back the 5 cents when it is sold to the grocer or retailer.

The grocer/retailer gets it back when he sells the beverage to the customer.

The customer gets the 5 cents back when he redeems the empty container at a certified redemption center.

The redemption center owner gets back the 5 cents plus a handling fee of 1 cent when he sells it to the certified scrap processor.  The processor is reimbursed for his 5 cents plus a 1 cent handling fee.  He also receives a fee of 1/10th cent to cover record keeping.

All POP expenses, including the handling fees paid to the redemption centers, will come out of the accrued unclaimed deposits.  The State’s litter program will be paid by the 1/8 cent fee collected from the beverage distributor. 

This sounds like a good idea on the surface.  POP says that 80.4% of Tennesseans support this idea.

So far I’m liking this.

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

Byron Begley
June 17, 2010

Little River Outfitters will be hosting a book signing with Ron Ellis on Saturday June 26, from 1 to 3pm. He will be signing copies of the new book "In That Sweet Country, Uncollected Writings of Harry Middleton".

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