Townsend, Tennessee - Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Welcome to the Fishing Report.  It is 59 degrees this morning in Townsend, Tennessee.  Wow, does that feel good.  Hold on though, it’s likely to top out at 94 degrees this afternoon.  Listen to the weather forecast for Saturday.  Sunny with a high of 78 degrees and a low of 55.  Now we’re talking.

Activity in Great Smoky Mountains National Park is low.  Herb said he was camping at Elkmont last weekend and it was quiet there, very few campers.  Jack was here yesterday.  He commented “There’s nobody in Townsend”.  This is the week before a holiday.  That’s the way it always is before a holiday, peaceful. 

You should see some much improved fishing this weekend.  We need rain though.  That would help.  The water is going to get much cooler after Friday.  Actually it is already cooler thanks to the low temperatures at night.  The water temperature was 68 degrees in town this morning. 

The water flow in Little River is 53 cubic feet per second (cfs).  Normal is 93 cfs. 

I would fish around Elkmont or below.  You might try the upper end of Tremont.  Early mornings would be best and it will be comfortable then.  With this low water you need to make every effort to stay hidden from the trout.  They are going to be hiding too, in the riffles and under cover along the banks.  Terrestrials and attractor patterns are what I would use.  Try a Beetle or Yellow Rubber Legged Stimulator as the dry and drop a nymph off that.  Hit the pockets in the riffles.  Stay low and use light tippet. 

I’m hearing the smallmouth bass fishing is picking up in the rivers and some lakes.  That is good news because the fishing was very slow a couple of weeks ago when Little River’s temperature was in the 70’s and the lakes felt like bathwater.  The surface temperature on some lakes on the Tennessee River was approaching 90 degrees.  As it cools off we’ll see the smallmouth bass come back closer to the surface.

The Townsend City Council will meet tonight.  Michael Talley will be sworn in as a new City Commissioner. He will replace Shannon Skidmore.  Then, the Council will select a Mayor to serve two years.  I think Mayor Pat Jenkins will be selected again.  I think he has done a great job and I like serving under him on the Planning Commission.  You can see a list of our City officials BY CLICKING HERE.

We are a small town. We have no property tax.  The city revenue is derived mostly from sales taxes and a portion of the state’s Hall Investment Tax.  With only 275 residents, we have 3 to 4 police officers.  Why so many police officers?  We are a tourist town so the effective population is much greater than the sum of local residents.  Due to the small physical size of the town, most of the residents in our valley live in the County.  Our property taxes outside and in the city are paid to the County. Over 2,000 people live in our valley, called Tuckaleechee Cove.

Our City Commissioners and Planning Commissioners are basically volunteers.  Our City Commissioners are paid $30 per month.  Planning Commissioners are not paid.  So, most of us have other jobs.  We also have a part-time Building Inspector, a City Recorder and a Maintenance Person. Our Fire Department is all volunteer. It works.  I think it works well.  We have our ups and downs but as a community we are very friendly to each other and get along well for the most part.  I really love living and working here and I like the people very much.

You can Google “Townsend” and add “TDOT” to the search and read all the publicity caused by the recent changes in how use of the right of way through town.  This has caused a lot of anxiety.  I’m hopeful these problems will be resolved soon and someday we’ll look back on this as a bump in the road or maybe a blessing.

I’m looking forward to the meeting tonight.

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

Byron Begley
September 1, 2010

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