Townsend, Tennessee - Fly Fishing in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, East Tennessee and Western North Carolina

Welcome to the Fishing Report.  Frost is covering the ground and rooftops in Townsend this morning.  The temperature was 32 degrees at 7:45 am when I arrived at the shop.  Fog is forming along Little River but other than that, the air is very clear.  I saw some snow covered mountain tops at daybreak.  Mount LeConte is still reporting three feet of snow on the ground.  Hikers and anglers are seeing snow in the higher elevations.  We’ll see some of that go away quickly over the next few days.  The high temperature today is predicted to be 68 degrees in the valley.

Fishing will be slow this morning.  The water is cold.  I would wait a while before going to the streams in the Smokies.  You will see some brown trout spawning if you look closely.  I would leave the females alone.  Let them spawn or prepare to. 

Nymphs would be my choice.  You may see some surface activity but that is unlikely until later today.  Watch for blue wing olives. You won’t see many if any terrestrial insects.  Do watch out for yellow jackets.  They may still be active when the ground heats up.  

Little River is flowing above normal as are most of the streams near here.  Flow in the river is currently 145 cubic feet per second.  Median flow for this date is 106 cfs.  The water temperature was 45.5 degrees at 7:45 am.  Flow is up from yesterday.  That has to be due to melting snow.  It didn’t rain yesterday.  But, the water temperature is actually warmer than yesterday by 1½ degrees. 

This is going to be a great day to be outside.  Yesterday was beautiful too.  I walked about 3 miles yesterday afternoon.  The local residents were outside doing all kinds of things.  On my walk I got a tour of a house that is being remodeled.  I stopped and talked to other people who were enjoying the great weather.  Today will be the same. 

We do have a 60% chance for showers tonight and it is going to be much warmer.  There is a 30% chance for rain tomorrow.  I think tomorrow will be the best fishing day, all day.  It should be cloudy and the water temperature should shoot up if we get that warm rain.  Snow melt could give us the opposite effect.  I doubt it though.  I’m still betting on tomorrow and I know, my friends are too.

For me, fly fishing in the lakes is over for the year.  I’m not a striper fisherman yet and the smallmouth bass are deep.  Maybe I should take up striper fishing again, or musky fishing. There is something uncomfortable to me about fishing out of a boat this time of year.  When I think of falling out of a boat into cold water then climbing back into the boat in cold air, I just can’t get excited about going.   

Glenn just walked in.  He said he caught several trout on Thursday.  He said the trout were on the small side.  They were fishing in the Park but I’m not sure where.

Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) is lowering the lakes more every day.  I am changing the elevation numbers on the lower left of this page every morning.  Now that the pleasure boating season is over, the drawdown occurs.  The impoundments will be used for reserve capacity should a large rain event happen.  And, TVA can optimize the turbines to make cheap electricity.  There will be plenty of power generation at the dams for a while.  Hmmm, two lake levels went up a foot since yesterday.  And, two lakes dropped by a foot.  They are still dropping. 

It is fly tying time.  And we have scheduled our winter fly tying classes.  If you have ever thought about learning this fascinating and enjoyable hobby, now is your chance.  We offer BEGINNER, INTERMEDIATE AND ADVANCED classes.  Click on the links to read about each one.  Then, call the shop to reserve your spot.  We furnish everything, including lunch.  Each class lasts all day and they are held on Saturdays.

Wow, the sun is shining and it is warming up outside.  This will be a great outdoors day whether you fly fish or hike or both.  The crowds are gone on this side of the Smokies.  That’s why they all Townsend “The Peaceful Side of the Smokies”. 

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

Byron Begley
November 3, 2012

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