Townsend, Tennessee - Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Welcome to the Fishing Report.  It is overcast and comfortable early this morning.  The roads are somewhat busy.  I saw some travel trailers driving out of town earlier.  I suspect all the campgrounds are busy.  Some people leave before the weekend and other come here for the weekend.  I’m one of those who leave before the weekend when we are on vacation. 

Little River looks good.  We had a shower yesterday and probably more rain in the Park.  The water level spiked up for a brief period.  Flow is 128 cubic feet per second at 8:00 am.  Median flow for this date is 120 cfs.  So for now the water is right at normal.  The water temperature was 70 degrees at 7:45 am.

There are thunderstorms on the way.  A large swath of red and green on the radar is moving this way from the west.  Additionally, small storms are already hovering nearby.  The chance for thunderstorms is 70% today.  That usually means we’ll get them.  We could use the rain and the fishing would improve with higher water.

If you are fishing in the Park today keep an eye on the water turbidity and depth.  There could be a strong storm in the higher elevations dropping water into the watershed where you are fishing.  That can be a good thing.  That can also be bad.  Color in the water and food washing in the stream can turn the trout on.  A flash flood could ruin your day.  Opportunity or adversity follows rain storms in the Smokies.  Just be careful.

Dry flies are working best.  Ants, beetles and Yellow Sally patterns will work for dry fly anglers.  If you want to fish under the surface try a Green Weenie.  For those who don’t mind fishing two flies at once, try a foam beetle with a Green Weenie as a dropper.  Fishing will be best in the evening or when the sky is cloudy.  Right now I’m seeing sun over the Smokies.  Earlier it was cloudy.  This could be a good day to fish unless a rising barometer really slows down the feeding activity of trout.  I can’t prove it one way or the other. 

When I pulled into the parking lot this morning there was a lot of activity around here.  A survey team is finally working on our lot.  I met the two guys and talked to them.  They were doing work for the State of Tennessee.

You may remember, last August the Tennessee Department of Transportation sent certified letters to around 80 landowners in town.  The letters demanded that any encroachments on the state right of way should be moved in 30 days or the department would move them for the landowners.  The cost of removal would be charged back to the landowners.

This started a domino effect that will never be forgotten here.  Many people have said this problem is the worst crisis the town has been through.

TDOT did some kind of satellite survey.  They based their opinion of who had encroachments on the ROW on that.  According to that survey our parking lot and sign were clear by five feet, which matched the two surveys we have.  But other people were not so lucky.  Initially, swimming pools, signs, parking lots and other structures including buildings and porches had to be moved.

I was asked to be the liaison between the city, it’s citizens and the Department of Transportation.  To me that represented the largest volunteer project I had ever taken on.

We asked for a true survey of the town.  TDOT hired a company at the cost of about $30,000 to complete the survey.  They did the work and guess what?  The new survey indicated that four to five feet of our parking lot and sign were on the right of way.  So, Paula and I have a boundary dispute with the State of Tennessee.  During one conversation with TDOT I was told, “the only way to solve the dispute would be in court”.  I told the folks at TDOT that would not happen.  It would be much cheaper to simply buy the land they said was in dispute.  TDOT decided to work further on identifying the actual ROW boundary line.  That’s what those guys were doing in our parking lot this morning.  They’ve been all over town for weeks.  This process is supposed to take 18 months.

Well, this morning, these guys found a buried pin and marked it.  The company that placed the pin there was one I have never heard of.  But, I remember seeing that pin when I had this lot surveyed.  And you know what?  That pin is five feet toward the road from our parking lot.  And, it is about 10 feet from where the last survey company thinks our property line is.  So, opportunity or adversity, right now I’m feeling good about what they found.  Maybe the dispute will be settled in our favor after all.  You never know.

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

Byron Begley
July 8, 2011

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Our fly fishing classes will be offered from March to October 2011.   To sign up just call the shop at 877-448-3474.  You can read more on our website in the Schools Section.  The fly fishing class schedule follows:

Saturday May 21 – Beginner Day One
Sunday May 22 – Beginner Onstream Day Two
Saturday June 11 – Beginner Day One
Saturday June 25 – Beginner Day One
Sunday June 26 – Beginner Onstream Day Two
Saturday July 9 – Beginner Day One
Saturday July 23 – Beginner Day One
Sunday July 24 – Beginner Onstream Day Two
Saturday September 10 – Beginner Day One
Saturday September 24 – Beginner Day One
Sunday September 25 – Beginner Onstream Day Two
Saturday October 8 – Beginner Day One
Saturday October 22 – Beginner Day One
Sunday October 23 – Beginner Onstream Day Two

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