Townsend, Tennessee - Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Welcome to the Fishing Report.  The air is clear and the temperature is 47 degrees in Townsend this morning.  There was a lot of traffic on the streets compared to what I have been seeing in the mornings.  Visitors are here for the Holidays.  Right now I am looking at the Great Smoky Mountains.  Puffs of fog are scattered around the landscape.  It is a beautiful morning in East Tennessee.

It rained all night and Little River is rolling this morning.  We got almost an inch of rain in our gauge at the shop.  Flow in the river is currently 1,060 cubic feet per second (cfs).  Median flow for this date is 253 cfs.  But, today’s flow doesn’t come close to the water we saw on this date in 1991.  On that date the flow was 3,130 at the crest.  The water temperature is a warm 51 degrees.

I know, for a fact that some of the guys who hunt the brown trout this time of year will be out today.  Due to the high water, many will be using spinning rods.  The river is slightly discolored right now.  And it is overcast.  The water is unseasonably warm.  They will be out there.

This looks like a “High Sticking Nymphing Day” to me.  This is a streamer day too.  The trout should be fairly active but beware, the current is strong.  Visibility is not great either.  Somebody is probably going to fall in today.  Make sure if you do you are not in the strong current.  Plan your plunge in shallow water.

Big dark nymphs are what I would use today.  I would probably tie on a Girdle Bug and use it all day long.  Plenty of weight might be necessary, you can experiment with that.  I would be fishing for a big trout today.  A Prince Nymph or Pheasant Tail might work. 

The rain in our area is over for a few days.  It is going to be fairly warm this weekend, lows in the mid 30’s and highs in the 50’s.  Those visitors who are here for the Holidays should be able to catch some trout but they are going to work for them.

The lowland rivers are swollen due to the rains and fishing for smallmouth bass will be slow.  You will probably encounter some turbid water and it will be high.  Be careful if you try that game.

TVA reports don’t offer many opportunities for the wading angler today.  Check before you go.  Here is what I see right now.  The Holston may be off from noon to 5 PM.  The South Holston has a window of opportunity between 11 am and 5 pm.  The Clinch is generating all day at Norris Dam.  Expect Apalachia Dam on the Hiwassee to be generating.  And it looks like Wilbur Dam is going to be inactive today.

We are going to close the shop at noon tomorrow and be closed Christmas Day.  I will write a fishing report in the morning before we open.

Wow! A column of fog is moving through town following Little River's path. Beautiful!

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

Byron Begley
December 23, 2011

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