Townsend, Tennessee - Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Welcome to the Fishing Report. It is a hot and sunny Friday here in Townsend. Highs for the Tennessee Valley are forecast to be in the 90's. The mountains will be cooler in the high elevations.

I stopped at the Swinging Bridge here in town to get the water temperature. I can't hardly believe that the water is still murky. The streams in the Park are pretty much clear. Usually the river has cleared up by now. There was no rain in the rain gauge and the flow of the Little River continues to drop. Water levels are looking great. This morning it was 2.02 feet or 221cfs. This is a great flow to fish. With water levels higher than normal there is always a larger chance that an afternoon thunderstorm could cause a flash flood. Keep vigilant on water flows and weather.

The water temperature was 69F. That isn't too bad considering how low of elevation it is taken and that it is the end of July. Higher elevations will definitely be better fishing if you are heading out through the middle part of the day. Early and late will produce the best.

Fly patterns this time of year are a mixed bag. Now we understand why we carry every fly box we own when we go to the stream. Try nymph patterns and some split shot in the deeper runs. A bushy dry fly will make a good indicator. Terrestrial patterns such as ants, beetles and green weenies continue to produce well. Yellow dries like Stimulators, Neversink Caddis, Paralyzer's etc have been doing well also.

Raz Reid stopped by Wednesday night so I could see the new Sage rods since my day off was Thursday. I am generally a skeptic when it comes to new products, especially ones that are really hyped by sales reps. The new Sage ONE is a good looking rod. It isn't off the charts pretty like a Winston but looks good with its glossy black blank. I do have to say one word about how it casts. WOW. I tend to like more moderate action to slower action rods, many Sages are too fast for my liking. The ONE casts really nice. It is a fast action with high line speed and a very crisp feel. Loops are tight and smooth. The first rod was a 4wt and we were casting it with a RIO Trout LT line. The rod cast nice, feeling very light and laying out pleanty of line. On the 5wt we had a RIO Gold. This line loaded the rod more and I could feel the cast better. Even with the faster action the ONE makes the cast easy. Raz rigged up a 9' 9wt. It will pick up way more line than you should with very little effort. Just picking up the line, one back cast and letting it go the rod cast 70+ feet and would have gone further if I had more line off the reel.
These days with so many good quality rods on the market a rod company has to make something destinct for it to make a splash. Fancy marketing campaigns can get people excited but if the product doesn't stand out it won't make it. I've got high hopes for this one.

I just checked the clock and this report is already getting late. Water levels look good. Air temps are hot and it is late Summer so fishing isn't going to off the charts fantastic but if you find some cool water you should have a good time. The weekend forecast is calling for chances of rain like every other day in the Summer. Sneak away to the mountains if you get the chance.

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

Daniel Drake
July 29, 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 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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