Townsend, Tennessee - Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Welcome to the Fishing Report.  The sun shines bright in Townsend, Tennessee this morning.  It felt cool outside earlier.  There were a lot of people walking this morning.  Townsend offers great infrastructure for that activity.  But we all know, it is going to get hot.  Highs this week will be in the mid 90’s every day.  There is a chance for scattered thunderstorms starting Wednesday.  We could use some rain.

Little River is low.  Flow right now is 72 cubic feet per second (cfs).  Median flow for this date is 110 cfs.  If you go fishing get up higher in the mountains.  The anglers who are doing that are catching trout.  One customer told me about his fishing experience at Greenbrier.  He and his son started fishing in the lower sections early yesterday morning.  They didn’t catch anything.  Then they hiked up about two miles and started catching trout.  They didn’t know it but they were fishing behind someone else.  The Dad said he caught 14.  I don’t know how many his son caught.  They ran into the man fishing in front of them.  He had caught over 40.  He was a local angler who certainly knew the stream well and how to fish that water. 

I would use dry flies, probably terrestrials, a Parachute Adams or small Yellow Stimulator.  I might drop a Bead Head Pheasant Tail or Green Weenie off that.  Concentrate your efforts on the faster water where the trout are hiding in the low water.  Watch your fly.  These trout attack fast in the moving water.  You have to be on your toes. 

I’m looking at a different weather website right now.  It reports a high of 91 on Friday with a 40% chance of scattered thunderstorms.  I think I’ll go fishing Friday.  We’ll probably fish for smallmouth bass in deeper water using a small Puglisi Shad pattern.  And, we’ll have rods in the boat with light tippet and small poppers for the bluegill and shellcrackers.  We’ll go early and come home early.

Jack and I were sitting around here last night after closing time.  We were talking about flies among other important things.  The subject of damsel flies came up.  I wonder how well they would do around here on the lakes?  I’m talking about the adult foam patterns. 

Years ago Frank and I were staying at Hubbards Yellowstone Lodge in Pray, Montana.  They have a beautiful 80 acre lake that is loaded with huge rainbows.  There were also jon boats available for guests.  We picked one out and used it all week.  The lodge personnel told me before we left for the trip to bring some damsel flies.  I tied some olive damsel nymphs and I think Frank did too.  We had used them before out there.  We always stripped them over the grass beds and did well.  What we found out when we got there is, the staff were recommending adult damsels, blue and tan.  Lucky for us they had some for sale. 

In the afternoons, on the lake the damsels were thick.  They would land on the water and some appeared to be dead.  The trout were sipping them down like M & M’s.  We each tied on an adult dry damsel and cast to cruising trout.  These fish were in the 18” to 22” size range.  Sometimes the trout would ignore the fly.  Other times they would pick them off the surface.  We decided to both cast at the same fish.  That was fun.  We would spot a big fish cruising and both cast out in front of it.  It was a game.  Sometimes they would take Frank’s fly, sometimes mine and often the trout would pass them both by.  We did this for a few hours almost every day if we were not fishing the Yellowstone River or in the Park.  It was a memorable fishing trip.  I don’t know when I’ve ever caught that many big trout.

So, I’m going to tie some and try that this week on the lake.  If it works I’ll let you know.

Thank you for being here with us and have a great day.

Byron Begley
August 9, 2010

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