Townsend, Tennessee
October 29, 2009

Welcome to the Fishing Report.  It is still dark but the sky looks somewhat backlit this morning.  It’s early, I’m at home working on the Journal.  I walked outside earlier.  It was pitch black and light rain or heavy dew was dropping on the leaves in the forest.  The air is a cool 45 degrees.  I stood, listening to the forest wake up.  It reminded me of the many turkey hunting trips over the years when you walk into the woods an hour before daybreak, find your pre-determined spot using a small flashlight, then waiting, watching and listening as the forest wakes up. 

Due to our modern technology I can see that Little River is still high.  It is fishable at 379 cubic feet per second but one should be careful wading.  Again, like yesterday, the river is at it’s highest level in 44 years on this date.  The closest it came to today’s discharge was in 1978 at 333 cfs.  It has been a wet year and certainly a wet Fall. At the Knoxville Airport they say rainfall this year is 11” above normal.  We have already passed the 50” mark there.  We’ve probably had a lot more than that here, next to the mountains.

Paula said we were slow at the shop yesterday.  Again, thanks to technology you can determine what the water conditions are in the freestone streams of the Smokies without talking to someone who is standing there looking at the river.  Just a few years ago you couldn’t do that.  Sure, I could look at the gauge and take the temperature, but how could I let hundreds of people know what I know without the internet?  I couldn’t. Or maybe I could.

Mary Dette Clark, who still runs a fly shop her parents founded on the Beaverkill River in Roscoe, New York had one of the first automated and remote fishing reports.  I bet she still does it the same way.  You can call a phone number at the shop where she posts a recording that gives audible river report. A lot of people called and they probably still do. 

I was in her fly shop one day, probably ten or more years ago and asked her if she would tie some flies for me.  I wanted to mount the selection in a shadow box.  She wrote down the order and told me it might be a while.  I waited.  About a year later a small cardboard box came in the mail.  It was the flies I had ordered.  In the package was a hand written invoice from her.  I quickly wrote a check and dropped it in the mail.  Some things change and others remain the same.

Yesterday I got an e-mail from a man in Australia.  He was interested in buying a discontinued fly line that we have on our website.  Instead of ordering it online he contacted me.  I was at home and didn’t know if we had it or not.  So, I forwarded the e-mail to Paula and Daniel. They will take care of his needs.  Things have changed haven’t they?

I can’t tell you what the fishing will be like today.  I can tell you the conditions are improving.  We are going to have warm days and nights but there is more rain in the forecast starting Friday through Saturday night. If I went fishing today I would start out with nymphs, weighted with a split shot or two and dredge the runs and eddys.  I would be standing close to the bank on the Middle Prong of the Little River.  I heard they closed the road between Metcalf Bottoms and Elkmont Campground yesterday due to a rock slide.  If that road is open today, that’s where I would be.  I just checked the Maryville Daily Times and they report the road may re-open today.  I wouldn’t take any chances.  I would fish the Middle Prong.

I’m going to the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Commission meeting today in Knoxville to support changes in trout regulations on the Caney Fork River.  After that, I’ll go by the shop, hook up the boat and bring it home.  Hopefully, Paula and I can go fishing tomorrow.  I can’t wait to see what the lake looks like surrounded by these beautiful fall colors.  Maybe we’ll catch a fish or two.

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

Byron Begley
October 29, 2009

                                                                                                                                   
Respond to: byron@littleriveroutfitters.com  


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