Townsend, Tennessee
August 10, 2009

Welcome to the Fishing Report.  It is sunny again this morning.  Townsend is quiet now but we were catering to visitors all around town this weekend.  Swimmers and tubers flocked to Little River and other streams to find relief from the scorching temperatures.  It is going to be hot again today then we will start cooling down back to normal.

Little River is beginning to show the signs of dry days and nights.  Though the flow is still above normal, rocks that have been wet for a while are starting to show themselves.  The water is getting warmer too.  The temperature was 69 degrees in town this morning. 

I’ve been telling customers to go up high where the water is cooler and hike further into the backcountry.  They also benefit from that advice by staying away from tubers and swimmers.  I believe that advice would still hold true for today.  But it looks like cooler temperatures and a much better chance for rain this week will improve the fishing conditions in the lower elevations. 

There are not any big hatches to report on so I would use terrestrials.  Beetles, ants and Green Weenies should work fine.  Attractor patterns like a Parachute Adams or a small Yellow Stimulator will do.  More important than pattern is stealth.  Don’t let those trout see you.  The game is over if they do.  Crouch down, blend in and fish the riffles.  You may see trout in the slow pools but they see you.  Lighten up your tippet.  If you are not doing well with 5X, switch to 6X.

Fish early and late.  Early gives you the advantage of fishing where another angler has not been in a while.  That is especially important on weekends.  When the sun is off the water trout are more likely to feed, especially on top.

I started tying Puglisi minnow patterns again last night.  Right now I’m making Threadfin Shad imitations.  Threadfin Shad is an important food source in lakes and tailwaters right now in the Southeast and as far north as Lake Cumberland in Kentucky.  I also plan to write a story with lots of photography about tying these flies for the September Issue of the Little River Journal.  A small Puglisi minnow can take 30 minutes to produce if you care about how it looks.  A large one for Tarpon can take as much as an hour.

But they work well and they are worth the time it takes.  I have tied the Threadfin Shad version for a few years.  That fly is deadly for trout, smallmouth and stripers.  I tie some very small ones using a #4 Tiemco egg hook.  They look like a tiny tarpon fly.  Trout on the Cumberland River eat them up.  I had to give my last one to a guide there one time.  He could not believe how well they worked for me.

I’m going to call TWRA this morning to tell them about this bear that is hanging around our house and “foaming at the mouth” according to one of our neighbors.  I don’t know if this animal is sick with distemper or rabies or maybe he just has a saliva problem.  Lets face it, some animals drool more than others.  I’ve had dogs that do and dogs that don’t.  He has not tried to hurt anyone but he is acting odd.  I know a lot of bear experts at TWRA, the Park and the Appalachian Bear Center which is located a few hundred yards from our house.  We’ll see what they say.

They say the new bridge spanning Little River at the end of town will be finished and opened by the end of the month.  This new bridge will replace the old Wilson Bridge which will be used for pedestrians after the new one opens.  We have about $200,000 to convert the old bridge to a covered bridge using timber frame construction.  The engineering has been done and approved by the State and County governments.  That will be a nice new addition to Townsend. We have been waiting for years for this.  The money has been held by the State and our County for around 10 years.

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

Byron Begley
August 10, 2009


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