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 60 degrees in Townsend this morning.  The Fall colors are beautiful.  Traffic is light this morning though we had plenty of visitors this weekend in our town.  There were plenty of anglers here too. 

We got some rain last night.  Our gauge at the shop indicated .65 inches fell.  As a result, Little River is rising. I stopped at the swinging bridge on my way here.  The water was clear.  There were plenty of yellow leaves in the water.  It was windy yesterday and some species of trees shed their leaves.  Other species held on and they make up the majority of the trees.

Little River is flowing at 91 cubic feet per second (cfs) and rising.  Median flow for this date is 86 cfs. The water temperature at 8:10 am was 59.5 degrees, quite a bit warmer than it has been lately in the mornings.

Fishing is very good.  The Smoky Mountain anglers are doing very well.  Dry flies are working as well as nymphs.  We had beginners out on the rivers yesterday for a class.  They did well.  Of course, they missed a lot of strikes.  That is usually the case.  But, trout were caught and the fish were active.  Spawning and pre-spawn browns are out in the open.  The brook trout are wearing colors that are spectacular.  Stream conditions are great for fishermen.  The forecast for this week is awesome.

The tailwaters are fishing very well too.  I was wrong about Ethan’s 25” to 26” trout again yesterday.  At first I reported the catch in the Park.  Daniel told me he actually caught the bruiser on the Clinch so I reported that.  Ethan was here yesterday for a meeting and told us he caught it on the Watauga tailwater.  So, I stand corrected again.  It was the Watauga.  He and Will caught some other nice trout that day.

Josh had a banner day guiding some clients for smallmouth bass.  He told me yesterday they caught about 80 fish.  He was on a tailwater but I’m not sure which one.  So, smallmouth bass fishing in the tailwaters is excellent.  Josh did say his clients were very good fishermen.  I know who they were and they are.

Fishing for smallmouth bass in the lowland rivers is excellent.  I’m hearing some great reports about angling on Little River.  Evidently, the fishing is better than it has been since Spring.  The smallmouth bass are taking streamers, nymphs and top water flies. 

Trout fishing in Townsend is great too.  TWRA stocked the river a couple of weeks ago.  Angling pressure has been light.  Fishing is good.  I saw a man and his son casting spinners below the swinging bridge this morning. 

The weather conditions this week are going to be great for fishing.  Expect lows in the 40’s and highs in the 60’s to low 70’s every day.  Rain may return on Thursday.  The ten day forecast looks the same until October 24th. 

So, this is what you have been waiting for.  Get out and fish. 

The Little River Chapter of Trout Unlimited held a called board meeting yesterday here.  The vote was unanimous.  We will not hold Troutfest in 2013.  The Chapter is taking a year off to re-focus.  I think they made a wise decision.

I plan to download the form and begin working on the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC) permit to re-build Laurel Lake.  I will be watched by professionals during this process.  They will provide the brain power.

We need $2,500 for a permit fee.  I’ll turn that over to Carl and General T.  They can get that done by making a few phone calls.  We don’t want to raise any more than that right now.  If for some reason the permit is denied, we’ll forfeit that money but any extra funds we raise would need to be returned to the donors.  So, we’ll only ask for donations up to that amount.

A special fund will be set up by the County so the donations will be tax deductible.  That will save us the hassle of setting up a non-profit organization.  We may do that later, but for now, this will work fine.

A sign will be erected on the lake property announcing that we have applied for a permit.  Also, we will be required to announce it in the Daily Times.  The article and sign will explain the scope of the project and where to send comments.  If TDEC receives reasonable unfavorable comments, they will hold a public meeting to determine who is against this project and why.  We intend to hold public meetings before the permit application is submitted so we will learn about any opposition.  So far, we have heard of no opposition, only reasonable concerns.  We are addressing those.  I am contacting all stakeholders now to seek out more concerns.

So, this is a very good time in East Tennessee for fly fishers. 

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

Byron Begley
October 15, 2012


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