Townsend, Tennessee - Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Welcome to the Fishing Report.  The church bells just rang across the street.  It is 8:00 am.  The fog is thick and the temperature was 30 degrees when I drove to work.  Traffic was very light.  Crows are flying by my windows right now, very close to the building.  My office is on the second floor of our building.  They are circling the field behind the shop.  Another crow just flew by only a few feet from the window.  What are they up to?

Little River looked great this morning but the current is strong and the level is high.  About 5” of wet rocks, soil and wood were visible along the banks.  The river is dropping but not very fast.  The water temperature was 44 degrees, down one tick from yesterday morning.  Flow is 855 cubic feet per second.  Median flow for this date is 198 cfs.

Wading is going to be tough.  Don’t try anything that you would do under normal conditions.  You could easily lose your footing and get swept away. Stay close to the bank.  You can make casts though they may be short.  Short is all you will probably need to do. 

I would use nymphs and weight the heck out of them.  You might get the surprise of your life just blind casting in likely spots.  I would also be using heavy tippet, maybe 8 pound or better.  I would be using big nymphs too, maybe #8 or larger.  My nymphs would probably have rubber legs.

Today is going to be a nice one.  It’s going to be chilly with a high of about 50 degrees down here and cooler in the mountains.  The water is cold and the trout will be lethargic except for the brown trout that have been spawning.  They will be hungry.

Our town is getting ready for the holidays.  Most of the stores have wreaths hanging on their doors.  Our local Kiwanis club sold them to raise money.  Evidently it was a very successful fundraiser.  We bought two.  Visitors will start arriving early Christmas week.  Visitors will come and go until after New Years day.  Then, the tourism business slows down until Valentine’s Day.  Then it will be slow again until the fishermen come back in the very early Spring.  And that is not really far off.

David Ezell and I are going to start working on the Troutfest website now.  I usually update the site in February.  Our marketing committee wants it done earlier.  David will be learning to manage the site and will probably take it over from me next year.

Some of the Troutfest Committee members came by for a short meeting this week.  We had our full committee meeting two weeks ago.  Lefty Kreh and Bob Clouser are coming back.  There will be a few new faces from the fly fishing industry here next year.  One is Jason Borger.  I have met his dad, Gary a couple of times but I never met Jason.  Jason worked on the movie, “A River Runs Through It”. 

The committee is working on a showing of the movie on Saturday night.  The movie will be shown at the Heritage Center.  The venue will be the covered theater that holds several hundred people.  Jason will be there to describe how the movie was made.  Sony has granted Troutfest permission to show the movie at a profit.  We have to pay them a fee.  Believe it or not, next year marks 20 years since the movie was released.

I remember one day I was in Dan Bailey’s Fly Shop in Livingston, Montana.  One of the guys working there told me he was taking Robert Redford fishing that afternoon.  I asked why Robert Redford was there.  The fellow told me he and a huge crew were in town filming a movie called “A River Runs Through It”.  He told me there was a book that the movie was based on.

I was out there for two or three weeks so I picked up the book in Jackson, Wyoming.  And, on that trip I read the book.  Then, I had to wait for three years for the movie to come out.  I was dating Paula when the movie was released.  We saw it in a theater.  It was one of our early dates.

So this should be an even more interesting Troutfest.  Thanks to Rob Fightmaster for working out the details with Jason and Sony.

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

Byron Begley
December 9, 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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