Townsend, Tennessee - Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Welcome to the Fishing Report.  It is very foggy and 57 degrees in Townsend this morning.  I talked to a guy fishing from the big rock under the swinging bridge.  He had just started fishing with no luck so far.  The river looked peaceful.  The water temperature was 62 degrees at 7:45 am. 

It is going to be warm today and tomorrow then cool temperatures will arrive in the valley.  Highs will be in the 70’s through the weekend.  Lows will be in the 50’s.  This is perfect fishing weather. 

Flow is normal for this time of year.  Today the flow in Little River is 91 cubic feet per second.  Median flow is 83 cfs.  The water is clear.

Fishing conditions are perfect.  Though the water is at a normal level, normal is fairly low this time of year.  The trout will be hiding in riffles, under rocks and downed tree cover.  Most important now is to not be seen by the trout.  Second in the list of importance is getting a good drift.  Dry flies will always work well when the streams are low and the water is cool.  I would use a dry fly that floats well and is easily seen by you or me.  Terrestrials will work.  An Elk Hair Caddis or Stimulator will score.  And, always have a Green Weenie or two in your box or attached to your leader. 

Water in the direct sun might not produce for you.  Pick the shady areas.

The higher elevation brook trout streams are fishing well though the water level is dropping.  There is a fairly good chance for rain on Thursday.  That would help the fishing conditions if it occurs.

I talked to some guys yesterday who are going to float Little River downstream from Perry’s Mill in their pontoons.  I can’t wait to hear how that went.  They plan to hire River John’s as a shuttle and fish that 7 mile stretch from the mill to his campground.  They should do well.  Fishing in the free flowing rivers outside the Park is good right now.  If we don’t get some rain it could slow down in the shallow water.  The deep pools should continue to fish well for smallmouth bass.

After work I plan to change the oil and tune up our boat’s motor.  I do both more often that the manual recommends.  I want this engine to last a long time and always run well.  The motor is a 20 hp Mercury 4 stroke.  It was 2 years old in August.  There is one year left on the warranty.

I bought our boat at Tri-County Marine in Morristown, Tennessee.  I told the owner I wanted to learn to do all the service work myself.  It takes about an hour and a half to drive from here to the dealership.  The guys at the dealership gave me a complete training session.  They taught me to change the fuel filter, change the oil, change the oil filter, replace plugs, and drain and change the lower unit oil.  There’s nothing to it.  It can be done in half the time it takes to drive to and from the dealership.  I do keep all the necessary parts and oils on hand.

These 4 stroke engines use almost no gasoline.  I can usually fish two days on 3 gallons of fuel.  To make sure I don’t use ethanol-laced gasoline, I fill the tanks up at a Harley Davidson outpost on Tellico Lake.  They even sell racing fuel there. All of their fuels are 100% gas.  That’s the only way to go. I also have a self-service card that I can use 24 hours a day at the Blount Co-Op in case I need fuel in Maryville.  Their gasoline station is un-attended.  Without their credit card, you can’t purchase gasoline.  Some of their fuels do not contain ethanol.  That is what you want to buy and burn in your outboard.

“The Minnow” will be running clean and lean for the next fishing trip.

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

Byron Begley
September 13, 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 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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