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 66 degrees in Townsend this morning.  Traffic is very light.  I saw only a handful of vehicles on my way to work.  That is typical on a weekday in August.

We had a brief light shower yesterday at the shop that amounted to nothing.  Heavier rain must have fallen in the Smokies.  Little River rose slightly yesterday until midnight.  Right now, flow in the river is 224 cubic feet per second (cfs) or 2.05 feet on the flow gauge.  Median flow for this date is 109 cfs.  The water temperature at 7:50 am is 64.6 degrees and the water is clear.

What we have today is an excellent flow for fly fishing in the Smokies, at least in the Little River drainage.  The flow is double normal for this date.  Normal in August is low.  Though the sun is shining right now, we should have cloudy conditions later today and tomorrow.  Higher water, cloudy skies and water temperatures like we are having now equate to very good fly fishing.  Fishing is good.  You may find some streams to be higher and flowing stronger than normal.  Little River is fine.

The flows are conducive to dry fly fishing. Terrestrials will work.  Try a foam beetle and drop an ant or Green Weenie off the dry fly.  Anglers are doing well with many different mayfly patterns including the Parachute Adams.  Yellow Stonefly imitations are what I would use.  Try a Yellow Stimulator or Yellow Neversink Caddis.  The trout think the caddis is a stonefly, I guess.  It works. 

Looking into the future, we are going to have cooler nights and always a chance for rain in the form of afternoon thunderstorms.

If you plan on fishing the Clinch River today you should be there now.  TVA plans to turn on one generator at 11:00 am then crank out more at noon.  The schedule looks similar at Cherokee Dam.  Check the TVA website yourself before you go fishing and plan accordingly.  Don’t take my word for it.  These schedules change.

Tomorrow is my day off.  Paula and I are going to the lake to fly fish for bass and carp.  Of course, there is a 50% chance for thunderstorms tomorrow.  After all, it is my day off.  We are going anyway.  It’s going to be cloudy.  I love cloudy days.  Plankton moves to the surface and shad follow their food source to the top.  Predator fish such as smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, trout and white bass follow the shad to the surface.  We’ll be out there waiting for the action to begin.  Due to expected thunderstorms, we’ll be close to the ramp.  I hate lightning, wind and whitecaps on the lake.  It makes me tense.  You should not be tense on your day off.

We reached our normal annual rainfall amount over two weeks ago and we’ve still got 4 months left in the year.  It has been wet.  Some of the Western states are suffering from a long drought.  I read an article on the website this morning about the problems facing the Colorado River and those who rely on the water for consumption and agriculture.  Things are getting bad out there.  You should read this article.  I had no idea.  CLICK HERE to read it.

What’s with the bears?  I think there have been 7 bear attacks on humans in the United States over the past few days.  None of the attacks were here.  I do know from talking to customers, that many bears have been seen lately but as far as I know, none of them showed aggression.

READ THIS ARTICLE on the CNN website.  The latest attack involved a black bear and a young girl who was jogging in Michigan.  Just reading about her experience gives me the chills.

Bears roam around our house and property frequently.  We don’t think much about it.  Paula and I saw a mother and two cubs right behind our house a few weeks ago.  The sow was the largest black bear I have ever seen.  This bear family frequents the Appalachian Bear Rescue center near our house.  One of the people who work there told me the sow probably weighed 500 pounds.  She looked larger than that to me but we were standing about 15 feet away.  They all look big when you are that close to them.

We’ve lived with bears for 20 years.  We don’t take any special precautions.  Paula doesn’t carry a gun when she walks down to her garden though she has a .45 auto and knows how to use it.  If I go out to my truck at night, I’m not packing heat.  Except for the two bears that tried to get into our house last year, I have never felt threatened by a bear.  They always take off when they see me.  I find comfort in that. I hope that continues.

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

Byron Begley
August 20, 2013

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