Townsend, Tennessee - Fly Fishing in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, East Tennessee and Western North Carolina

Welcome to the Fishing Report.  It is partly cloudy and 70 degrees in Townsend this morning.  Tomorrow I will be able to say the temperature is in the 60’s.  Can’t wait for that.  Townsend appeared very active this morning.  People are getting out early.  The restaurants were not busy.  Again, there seems to be a lack of appetite in the mornings lately. 

Little River looks awesome.  Flow is back above normal at 125 cubic feet per second (cfs).  Median flow for this date is 115 cfs.  The water temperature at 7:55 was 71.3 degrees.  Our gauge indicated 1.10” of rain.  The water was slightly turbid.  If that is the case in the Park, fishing will be excellent today. 

I checked some of the other free flowing streams in our area.  Cataloochee is running normal.  Oconaluftee at Birdtown is flowing at 621 cfs.  Median flow there for this date is 296 cfs.  The Davidson River in Brevard, NC is flowing at normal.  Tellico River is flowing at normal.

And of course, we don’t know what is happening on the Little Pigeon because that gauge does not have a sponsor.  The City of Sevierville used to sponsor that site and for some reason they dropped it.  Blount County sponsors our gauge here.  I think the cost is about $2,000 to $2,500 per year or it was the last time I checked.  Why doesn’t someone get a group together, raise some money and sponsor the gauge on the Little Pigeon? Why don’t the people in Sevier County insist that one of the Government agencies sponsor that gauge?  Ask your City or County Commissioner.  I don’t live there.  I don’t have clout there.  Some of you do.  I bet you could get it done.

Fishing should be very good in the Smokies right now.  We are probably going to get some more rain so there is a possibility for a blowout.  That would be the down side of fishing today.  I would go if I could.  The conditions are good to perfect depending on where you fish.

I would go to the East Prong of Little River above Elkmont.  I would be prepared to fish with nymphs and drowned terrestrials. Or I might fish with a dry fly. Maybe noth. Drop a Green Weenie off a beetle.  Drop an ant off a beetle. Drop a San Juan worm off a beetle. 

Yesterday I discussed Kent Edmond’s theory about UV light penetration of water.  Evidently the UV light penetrates deeper and highlights some colors more than others.  Chartreuse is one of the colors that respond to UV light really well.  Maybe that is one reason the Green Weenie catches so many fish.  They are great for trout ad bluegill.

Kent also told me that red stood out as a dominant color when he shined his UV light on flies tied in that color.  Now that is interesting.  Think about this.  A lot of bass llures have a red gill.  Somebody thinks that is important.  Actually a lot of people do. 

Either Lefty Kreh or Joe Humphreys told me one time that red is their favorite color for the Green Weenie (Red Weenie) is red.  Now that I think about it, Lefty told me that.  He went home from one of his trips here and called back to order some red Ultra Chenille.  Lefty also told Brian Courtney when they were talking at the shop one day, that he considers the Green Weenie to be one of the top ten trout flies. He wrote an article about it.  Brian ties our Green Weenies.  Brian was here tying some of the flies when Lefty walked in with me.

Joe Humphreys likes them to.  His deceased best friend, George Harvey is credited with inventing or drawing attention to the most popular version of the Weenie, the one with the loop tail.  It is well known to many and only recently known to me that the loop gives the fly action in the water.  The loop makes it swing from side to side.  Joe Humphreys told me that sometime during the last 8 years.  I remember the conversation and we were downstairs in this building.  We’ve been in this building for 8 years.

All of our beginner fly tying students start with the Green Weenie.  It is one of the easiest flies to tie.  They work too.

Last night before dark, Paula answered our phone.  It was our security company, ADT. They monitor our house for fire and intruders.  They were calling us to say that they had an alert at our neighbors house.  They monitor their house too and we are on their call list.  The police were on the way. 

I grabbed my Ruger .357 mag and drove Paula’s Jeep to our neighbors house.  It was still daylight but almost dark.  Everything looked OK.  I thought about the possibilities of the police arriving and seeing me standing there armed.  That pistol is made from shiny stainless steel.  It would have shown up easily.

I jumped in her Jeep and drove home.  I wasn’t afraid of the intruder, which did not exist.  I was afraid of the police.  If the police officer was from Townsend, they would have recognized her Jeep and they know where we live.  If the officer was a County Deputy, they may not have known me.  I was glad to get out of there. 

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

Byron Begley
August 6, 2012


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