Townsend, Tennessee
July 10, 2009

Welcome to the Fishing Report.  It is sunny and fairly warm this morning.  Traffic was light on my morning commute.  I might have seen 15 cars.  There were a couple of guys at the swinging bridge.  One is from Florida and has been a customer here for years.  He said the fishing was really good in the Park yesterday  but when the thunderstorms arrived the Middle and West Prongs of Little River became muddy.  Those storms went around us.  We did get .18” of rain at the shop but there must have been more in the Park.  The river is clear this morning.  I looked at the flow charts from the gauge located below the “Y” on Little River.  There were three substantial peaks in water levels late yesterday and early this morning.  You can see them by clicking on the link below or go to “Stream Info”, one of the options to the lower left of this page. Here’s the link.

Fishing in the Smokies is very good.  It is better early and late but you can catch them during the day too.  I would use terrestrials such as ants and beetles but for sure I would use a Green Weenie and it would probably be weighted.  The guy I talked to at the swinging bridge caught his trout on Green Weenies yesterday.  I would switch over to a Yellow Sally stonefly pattern in the evening and maybe use one during the day.  A #16 stimulator works well for both the Yellow Sally pattern and as an overall attractor.

Today and tomorrow the sun will be shining.  During the day I would concentrate on the shady areas.  Rain will be with us in the form of scattered thunderstorms throughout the next few days.  The chance is slight tomorrow and higher on Sunday and Monday.

Rainfall and high elevation mountains are why we have trout here.  This is about as far south as you will find wild trout in a natural setting in the Eastern United States.  The brook trout’s natural habitat extends a little further south into North Georgia.  The water is colder because these streams are born at elevations as high or higher than 5,000 feet above sea level.  The air is cold up high.  Mount Leconte which is near here has an elevation of 6,500 feet.  A temperature of over 80 degrees has never been recorded there.

The Smokies are also a temperate rain forest.  According to Wikipedia a temperate rain forest has annual precipitation of over 1,400 mm.  Clingman’s Dome in the Park has an average annual rainfall amount of 2,000 mm.  We get a lot of rain here.

By definition a temperate rain forest has a mean annual temperature between 39 and 54 degrees Fahrenheit.  We fall into that category. 

Other characteristics of a temperate rain forest include plenty of fog, uncommon wildfires, abundant mosses and the trees are of the species that don’t need wildfires for regeneration of seedlings.  The trees here can regenerate under shade and in natural openings.

Temperate rain forests occur here, the North Pacific United States, Valdivian and Magellanic forests of South America, South Africa, Britain, Turkey, Georgia (not US), Iran, Taiwan, Japan, Australia, New Zealand and some southern ocean islands.  Here’s the Wikipedia link.

If you come here to fish bring a rain jacket.  If you come here at all bring a rain jacket.  I keep one in my truck, two in my office and we have several at home.

I have said this before but if you look at a map of East Tennessee this area resembles an ocean with mountains poking up.  It is hard to find more blue on a map anywhere else in the country than you will find in East Tennessee. We have a lot of streams feeding rivers.  Many of the rivers have been backed up by TVA dams into lakes.  Below those lakes are rivers.  Further down stream those rivers are backed up again by a dam.  If you love water like I do, East Tennessee is the place to live or visit.

The water is diverse.  And the fishing is diverse.  We are known as the Smallmouth State.  We have unbelievable trout fishing.  We have excellent fishing for brook trout, brown trout, rainbow trout, lake trout, largemouth bass, bluegill, walleye, stripers, musky, smallmouth bass, gar, carp, catfish, paddlefish, white bass, crappie and red eye,  I don’t know, what else am I missing. You get my point, this area is a fisherman’s paradise. 

That is why I live here. Oh, and the people are friendly here too.  Maybe that is because they get to enjoy a diverse fishery and they are always happy. 

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

Byron Begley
July 10, 2009    

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