Townsend, Tennessee - Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Welcome to the Fishing Report.  It is quiet and peaceful in Townsend this morning, or at least it appears that way.  This is quiet a contrast from what I heard about the traffic in Great Smoky Mountains National Park yesterday.  It must have been packed with people and cars.  Tourists and locals are finding relief from the heat in the high mountains where the temperature is 10 degrees cooler than here in the valley.

Little River is flowing slow and low through town.  Water passage is calculated to be 68 cubic feet per second (cfs).  Median flow for this date is 134 cfs.  We need rain in a bad way.  We’ve got a pretty good chance for precipitation starting tomorrow.  And listen to this.  Daytime high temperatures are expected to peak in the 80’s next week.  That’s great news.  According to the Weather Channel website, the average high temperature in August is 84 degrees in Townsend.  The average low is 60 degrees.  “Average” would be a welcome change.

Fishing is good in the Smokies if you don’t mind walking a couple of miles or driving to the higher hills.  Ethan fished early yesterday on Road Prong.  He did well.  The water there was 65 degrees.  There are miles of high elevations streams that are fishing well.  The water is low though.  Be careful not to spook them.  The trout are hiding in the riffles and choppy water and down as deep as they can get.  Dry flies are working.  The fish are not picky about patterns right now.  At those elevations, where food is scarce, they’ll attack anything that looks like a meal.  I would probably use a beetle or other terrestrial imitation.  Those bugs provide plenty of protein and the trout know it.  Insects rank high in the trout’s basic food groups.

An ice cold tailwater might be the place to fish too.  Fishing has been good on the Clinch.  I hear that every day.  Yesterday didn’t provide much of an opportunity for wading anglers, or that’s what I heard.  Quite a few people ended up fishing here as a result.

I don’t know about the lakes.  I hope to find out this week.  We may “lake and bake” Friday.  The smallies are down on the bottom a few feet below the surface.  The bluegill are hitting on top early and maybe late.  I don’t know about the largemouth bass.  We rarely fish for them.

We are expanding the fly tying department at the shop and got in some new materials yesterday.  I ordered 8 colors of grizzly matuka soft hackle.  This stuff looks good.  And we added a new line of synthetic chenille.  Also available is palmering chenille for making great baitfish patterns.  I’ve been using this material for a couple of weeks and the flies look fishy (to me, maybe not to them).

I’ve been trying to find a cabin, on Dale Hollow Lake that has a high speed internet connection.  This has been a futile endeavor.  That beautiful lake is tucked so far in the back woods that a modern convenience like cyber space involvement is either not an option or anglers don’t ask for it.  The internet comes in handy on a fishing trip when the weather turns sour and you find yourself waiting in the cabin for conditions to change.  The internet is also handy for you to find out when the conditions will change or how bad the conditions are.  I don’t know how many times I’ve sat in a condo on the gulf, doing nothing but waiting. 

The internet has become an important fishing tool.  You can find stream flow data for freestone rivers and tailwaters.  You can watch weather radar and get up to date forecasts.  Lake levels and expected changes in those levels can be found.  You can look up wind direction and expected speed.  That information is essential for small craft on large bodies of water for safety.

Who knows, maybe they will invent a cell phone that can connect you to the internet without a plug and be available from almost anywhere, including a boat. 

They have?

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

Byron Begley
August 10, 2010 

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