Townsend, Tennessee - Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Welcome to the Fishing Report.  What a morning.  I hit some ice going down the hill to the main road and slid off.  I didn’t hit anything but I could not move.  I walked back to the house, called the shop and Ethan brought me some ice melt.  After struggling to stay on my feet I finally got some chemical on the concrete.  Then I waited.  I heard sirens in the distance a few times.

At work I heard other stories about a bridge closed, a bad wreck that close West Millers Cove Road and other ice related problems.  Ethan’s feet went out from under him at his house and he ended up laying on his back on the ground. 

This problem will be over soon if not already.  We should see highs near 50 today and 60 tomorrow.  We are all tired of ice, snow and very cold temperatures already and Winter is just getting started.  I remember this Summer when we had record breaking high temperatures, a span of about 45 days with highs in the 90’s I said, “I’ll never complain about cold weather again”.  Well, I lied.

Maybe fishing will pick up a little.  I think it might.  Everyone is suffering from cabin fever and ready to go fishing.  I talked to a fellow yesterday and he said he will be fishing the Clinch River this weekend no matter what.  There will be anglers in the Park too.  Fishing may not be great in the Smokies but just getting out on the water will be enough to bring on relaxation and ease of mind.

This is going to be a great weekend.  It is the New Year holiday.  A lot of visitors have showed up in Town.  I talked to one couple downstairs a few minutes ago.  They were on their way to Blackberry Farm and the road was closed so they came to the closest fly shop to wait.  I’m glad they found us.  There is quite a bit more traffic than normal.  Many of the folks are tourists.

I’m learning to tie flies with the vise about two feet in front of me.  How weird does that sound?  It is hard to do with your arms stretched out almost straight.  That also causes visual problems.  It’s hard to see what I’m doing.  I tend to shake more than normal too.  But, I’ll learn to do it.  So, why do something stupid like that?  Well, I have a high definition video camera mounted on my desk in front of my chest and I’m trying to make tying videos.  I want the viewer to see the flies tied from a true perspective and on a solid background, not my shirt. 

It is working.  But it is not easy.  I think I’m going to start using a single edge razor blade to cut materials and thread.  Working with scissors at that distance seems to be the hardest part.  

One thing I have noticed on many tying videos is the condition of the tyers fingernails.  And sometimes there is dirt under their fingernails.  So I got an emery board that I use to sand poppers and actually filed my fingernails after clipping them.  I think that is the first time I have ever done that.  Paula makes it look easy.  Maybe I’m being too picky.  My name is not going to be on these videos, only Little River Outfitters so, who cares?  I guess I do.

We held hour third Town Hall Meeting Tuesday night.  I was hoping to get input from the citizens about how they would handle our problem with the State right-of-way.  Some people want to purchase more land and other want to preserve the greenspace.  People were frustrated and so am I.  Our problems are huge.  I did come up with one idea that some people liked but this problem is too complicated for a single fix that is fair to everyone.  I was hoping someone would have the answer.  (Google TDOT Townsend if you want to read about our problem.)

Ronnie, our Police Chief came to my rescue Tuesday night.  After giving a heartfelt and excellent speech about working together he told me that the two of us were going to visit every business on the State Highway and take measurements.  We will do that next week.  Then we will develop a plan or to be more specific, a proposal.  Then we’ll call another Town Hall Meeting and present it.

Due to the complexity and the hundreds of thousands of dollars it will take to solve this, no one person wants to present a solution or maybe they feel funny about walking around town taking measurements.  I don’t feel funny doing it especially when I’m doing it with Ronnie.  I bet we can get the job done in one day, maybe two. 

Of utmost importance to everyone is the bicycle trail.  Our bike trail was voted as second best in East Tennessee by a magazine.  The best bike trail is just up the road in Cades Cove.  There may be places in town where the bike trail could be adjusted or moved a little so there is a buffer between business and the path.

Have a great day and sorry this report was late.

Byron Begley
December 30, 2010

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Our fly tying classes will be held in January and February.  To sign up just call the shop at 877-448-3474.  You can read more on our website in the Schools Section.  The fly tying class schedule follows:

Saturday January 8 – Beginner Fly Tying
Saturday January 15 – Intermediate Fly Tying
Saturday January 22 – Advanced Fly Tying
Saturday February 5 – Beginner Fly Tying
Saturday February 19 – Intermediate Fly Tying
Saturday February 26 – Advanced Fly Tying

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