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

Welcome to the Fishing Report from the Great Smoky Mountains.  It is overcast and 41 degrees in Townsend this morning.  I noticed a lot of traffic going home last night.  That would indicate that we have out of town visitors in Townsend.  We should see more as we get closer to the New Year holiday.  Business in the shop yesterday was brisk for a Sunday during the Winter.

Little River is still flowing high at 723 cubic feet per second (cfs) or 3.11 feet on the flow gauge.  Median flow for this date is 286 cfs.  The water temperature at 8:10 am is 46 degrees.

We didn’t see many fishermen going out yesterday.  The high water kept them away.  I did talk to a guide from Middle Tennessee, Mike Anderson.  He and a buddy fished at Cherokee for those big stocked fish.  He said he saw one guy doing very well using a San Juan Worm kind of fly. Mike has a great website. Check it out by CLICKING HERE.

Instead of using Ultra Chenille, his fly was tied using the rubbery spikes found on a toy.  I have seen these toys and heard about tying flies using the spikes.  Mike said this guy was catching plenty of fish, high sticking the pink fly.  I’ve got to try that.  Dave told me he bought some at Dollar General.  I found a story about these flies on Gink & Gasoline. CLICK HERE TO SEE WHAT I’M TALKING ABOUT.  I would not be surprised if bluegill didn’t scarf these flies up.

If you go fishing today be careful wading.  You might do fine in some streams since the water has warmed and receded some.  Just don’t take any chances wading.  I would use nymphs, weighted well and fished deep.

 It looks like New Years Day has some fishing potential.  The high is supposed to be over 50 degrees here. I know there will be a good number of anglers on the streams later this week.  The water will be lower in the Smokies streams.

We are always open New Years Eve and we are usually pretty busy.  We close on New Years Day then open the day after.  We are busy again.  Anglers like to visit here during the winter holidays and they bring their gear, just in case.  We may have decent weather until Thursday and Friday.  It is going to get colder and we do have a slight chance for snow Thursday and that night.

Snow in the mountains would be nice. We can see the Smokies from our house.  It’s better when the mountains are covered and the valley is not.  I do have some brand new tires I’m anxious to try out for a day or so.  

I think I’ll tie flies and watch football on New Years Day.  I don’t see many football games since I’m always working on the weekends.  I’m not a huge football fan but I do enjoy watching a good game occasionally.

Saturday will be an awesome day at the shop.  John Thurman and Josh Pfeiffer will be here, tying flies and talking to you about fly fishing, our favorite sport.  John is an aquatic biologist.  He is also a excellent fly fisherman and upland bird hunter.  If he’s not fish’n, he is hunt’n.  I would say he fishes the Clinch River most often since he lives in Norris, Tennessee.  That is his home water.  The Clinch River is an awesome fishery.  John ties flies that work there.  He should know because he knows what insects live in that river.  He says his flies are simple and quick to tie.  Small flies are not simple for me.  To me, anything tied on a hook smaller than a #10 is tiny.  He does it and his flies work.

Josh guides in the Smokies, on our local tailwaters and on Little River.  He targets trout and smallmouth bass.  He uses a drift boat at times and a full size raft at other times.  You can visit his website by CLICKING HERE.

I saw one brown trout he caught in the Smokies this year.  It was 26” long. 

Josh and I share a love of fly fishing for smallmouth bass.  I consider him an expert and I’ve learned a lot about catching these fish from him.  He knows how to do it.  He and I have floated one of the tailwaters together and had a great time.  He is enthusiastic about fly fishing, about as much so as anyone I know.

So, you should be here Saturday.  It’s free.  These guys will be here between 10 am and 2 pm.

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

Byron Begley
December 30, 2013  

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