Townsend, Tennessee - Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Welcome to the Fishing Report from Townsend, Tennessee.  It is chilly and foggy this morning.  I saw a lot of people out and about, mostly us locals.  I drove to the river and noticed a truck parked at the swinging bridge.  A fellow was standing on the big rock casting a spinner into the river.  I asked permission to dip my thermometer into the water near him.  He said it was fine.  We talked for a few minutes.  He had caught one trout.  So, we both assume that the river was stocked this week.  The published stock date was Sunday.  I bet they did it during the past couple of days.  This is the first trout I’ve heard being caught since stocking was curtailed for the Summer.  But, don’t come running to Townsend based on this man catching one trout.  Maybe they have not stocked.  This is a good time to fish for stockers here, from now until winter.  I don’t do it often but some people do.  And, it is never crowded this time of year.

Little River is low.  Flow is currently 48 cubic feet per second compared to median flow for this date of 70 cfs.  The lowest recorded flow on October 6th was 24 cfs in 2008.  I’ll never forget that year. 

I was off yesterday doing chores and did not talk to anyone about fishing all day.  I did manage to tie two dozen Stillwater Stealth Bombers.  I can only assume the fishing is fair but low water tactics are required.  And, I would fish the larger rivers, probably the East Prong of the Little River from Metcalf Bottoms to Elkmont and above.  And, I would use a dry fly, probably a Orange Stimulator or an Elk Hair Caddis of some sort.  A Parachute Adams or Thunderhead will work.  Terrestrials might still be working too.  Right now, pattern does not matter as much as presentation and stealth.  The trout are going to be in the riffles or choppy water where riffles enter a pool.  They feel safer there and you can get closer to them, which is necessary to get a good drift in most places.  You might want to drop a nymph off the dry.

I got an e-mail from Gary Troutman.  He fished one of the lakes on Monday.  He said the fishing was slow.  He is an excellent fly fisherman and likes to target smallmouth bass and other warmer water species.  If he can’t catch them there is no reason for me to go.  I have learned a lot from Gary about this sport of using larger flies for fish with larger mouths.  I’ve learned a lot about tying from him too.

I’m leaving here in an hour to meet Mark Brown, Sales Manager at Chota Outdoor Gear.  We plan to shoot a video to promote their new Hippies and the deadline is day after tomorrow.  So, I’ll shoot the video, load it into my computer at home tonight and try to piece together something for them to use.  I am barely familiar with the video editing software I have and even less adept at using this fairly new Hi-Def video camera.  I hope I don’t mess this up.  Mark sent me a sound track of rushing water and birds chirping.  I have never imported sound into a video before.  I hope this work out!

Steve Jobs died and that man was one of my hero’s.  I heard him compared to Thomas Edison, Henry Ford and Walt Disney last night and it’s true.  He was the greatest inventor and innovator of our time.  He was 56 years old, four years younger than me.

I opened a printing company in Nashville when I was 23 years old.  At that time, typesetting was beginning to emerge as a photographic/computer driven system using a laser.  We would take the type, cut and paste it on a sheet of paper, add photographs and illustrations, then take a picture of that using a camera that was huge.  It weighed several hundred pounds.  Chemical processors in the camera would produce a plate that was attached to an offset printing press and away we went.  It was an expensive and time-consuming process.  Back then, that was state of the art.

In 1984, I was attending a printing equipment show in Minneapolis.  A lot of my friends who were also in the printing business from all around the United States were there.  We all watched as Apple Computer folks demonstrated their new baby, the Mackintosh.  Type was set on this small box then output to another new invention, the laser printer.  Using these machines we could set type, arrange it and get almost camera-ready art in seconds.  We all looked at the output quality and said, “It will never sell”.  Customers won’t settle for a non-photographic original.  Boy, were we wrong.  Within a few months I bought several Macs.  I’m typing on one right now.  I have one at home that has a 27” monitor.  I guess you could say I’m a Mac person and have been for over 25 years.

Steve will be missed.  He was a genius.  The world will not be the same.  This makes me sad.  He and his partner started making computers in a garage.  Ten years later they had 4,000 employees.  What a great man.

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

Byron Begley
October 6, 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 October 8 – Beginner Day One
Saturday October 22 – Beginner Day One
Sunday October 23 – Beginner Onstream Day Two

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