Townsend, Tennessee - Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Welcome to the Fishing Report.  It is very foggy in Townsend this morning.  Traffic is light and the bike trail was vacant.  It’s not much fun being in business, in Townsend, in August.  Well, every day is fun for me at work.  And we were pretty busy yesterday. 

Little River is low right now.  Flow is 58 cubic feet per second.  Median flow for this date is 112 cfs.  The lowest flow on this date occurred in 2007 at 23 cfs.  It has been hot and dry lately.  It looks like we’ll see more normal temperatures after today and probably some rain.  So, everything could change soon.

Fishing is best in the mid to high elevations of Great Smoky Mountains National Park.  Anglers are not having any trouble catching trout if they know how to fish low water.  I did notice one thing that effected my job this week.  We ran out of 6X tippet.  Anglers switched from 5X to 6X when the water levels dropped.  I had 20 spools of 6X ordered from Rio and Orvis.  I order from them almost every week.  But I wondered if those shipments would come in before the weekend.  They did.

So, use light tippet, stay hidden and get a good drift.  The trout will be in the riffles or hidden under structure.  You probably won’t catch any in the slow moving pools.  Terrestrials are working well.  Ants, beetles and Green Weenies would be my choice right now in the Park.  Yellow Sally stonefly patterns and other dries are working too.  The Yellow Neversink Caddis is still a good producer.

The water is warm in Little River.  This morning at 7:30 am the water temperature was 72 degrees.  That is not hurting the smallmouth bass fishing but the low water and bright sun is not helping at all.  I’ve talked to several smallie fishermen this week and they are reporting slow fishing.  I found that out for myself on Wednesday morning. The larger rivers and deeper pools on the lower Little River are probably fishing fine. I was wade fishing Wednesday in shallow water. The smallmouth bass were spooky.

I hear the lakes are warm too.  They have to be.  I quit lake fishing about 3 or 4 weeks ago.  It has been too hot.  Even if you launch at daybreak you should expect high water temperatures.  That makes it tough to catch smallmouth bass near the surface.  I guess using a sinking line might work.  I always have a rod lined up with one in the boat but rarely use it.

All of us who live here are used to having bears around. I hardly ever give it a thought. Sometimes an aggressive bear hangs around our neighborhood and that causes a stir until it moves on. We live in their territory and they are usually nearby but I hardly ever see them. We just know they are there. We do not have bird feeders and we can't put our garbage outside.  

A big bear is terrorizing a Townsend woman.  It was on all the local news websites this morning.  I had heard there are bear problems outside the Park.  Evidently, the wild berry crop was not good this year.  I guess the heat got them.  I drove by Ronnie’s house the other day and saw a bear trap in the back of his truck.  Ronnie is our Police Chief.  I can see his house from my office window.  Kerry, who I’ve known for years is having more bear trouble than most of us here are used to.  This big animal won’t leave her alone. 

She fired her .357 magnum pistol over his head and he didn’t even run.  Now that surprises me.  And, when a reporter from a Knoxville TV station came out to do a story, the bruin ran them into her house.  Hmm, .357 magnum?  That's what I carry. I need a louder gun.

You can read the story here on the KNOXNEWS website. Ronnie has the trap set at her house.  I bet he’ll catch it. Ronnie knows about the power of Honey Buns.

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

Byron Begley
August 20, 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 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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