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Welcome to the Fishing Report from Townsend, Tennessee in the Great Smoky Mountains. At 5:20 am, the temperature is 45.1 degrees.
We got 1.37” of rain in Townsend yesterday. The Knoxville Airport reported 1.08”.
We have a 60% chance for rain this afternoon, 100% chance tonight and a 90% chance tomorrow. There is a 40% chance Thursday. Thursday through Saturday will be cold, with highs in the 30’s and lows in the teens to high 20’s. More rain is predicted the following week.
Little River is flowing at 199 cubic feet per second (cfs) or 2.11 feet on the gauge. Median flow for this date is 218 cfs. The water temperature is 46 degrees this morning.
According to the National Park Twitter page, Little River Road from Sugarlands to Townsend is closed due to fire fighting operations. Laurel Creek Road is open, giving you access to the Middle Prong, West Prong, Abrams Creek and all of their tributaries. Highway 441 is closed.
Fishing may be pretty good today. I would probably fish the Middle or West Prong or Lynn Camp Prong. I would use nymphs first, and maybe try dry flies later.
Rain has brought much needed relief to firefighters in East Tennessee. As of December 1st, when the State Fire Report was updated, there were only 5 active fires listed. I think there were 60 at one point a couple of weeks ago. Of those listed, three were in Hamilton County, with one in our County (Blount) and one in Sevier County. The one in our County is the East Miller Cove fire. It was listed as 95% contained. The fire in Sevier County is the Chimney Tops 2 fire, which covers 17,108 acres and was 0% contained in that report.
Due to that fire, updated news indicates, 14 people died, 134 people injured and 1,684 structures were damaged or destroyed. 2,539 Sevier County customers were without power as of 5 pm last night. You can read all the updates on the WBIR website by CLICKING HERE. This is a very long report, updated over the past few days.
A recent report indicates the Chimney Top 2 fire is 38% contained. I read that on a news report on the WLOS website, a TV station in North Carolina. There should be more updates today from the Tennessee Division of Forestry. You can read it by CLICKING HERE.
The U.S. Drought Monitor will be updated Thursday. The most recent version, released last Thursday, did not indicate a positive change in the southern drought, but that data was collected before we started getting rain.
We have had over 3” of rain since that date in Townsend, and more than that at the Knoxville Airport. It has rained in many other areas in the south. More rain is expected today through Thursday in the region. This Thursdays report should show vast improvement in our drought situation, throughout the Southeast United States.
For instance, the rainfall deficit for the year, at the Knoxville Airport, was over 10” last week. Now, the deficit is 4.45 inches. So, the rainfall deficit, over an 11 month period, was cut by over 50% in one week. That may not represent what we will see over our entire region. It is probably an exception.
But, we have more rain predicted over the next three days and more again next week.
Things are certainly looking up right now, from a drought standpoint.
Home and business owners in Sevier County and Gatlinburg, are returning and planning to clean up and rebuild. Many people lost their homes, businesses and jobs. Many people lost friends and family. I have never seen a disaster, of this magnitude, close to home, in my life. I personally know some of the people who were devastated by these fires.
Law enforcement officers are protecting Gatlinburg and other areas affected by the fire. There is a curfew in Gatlinburg. I’ve heard of no looting. Only home and business owners are allowed into Gatlinburg right now. That will change soon, as workers will be arriving to clean up and start re-building.
A large number of firefighters are working on the Chimney Tops and other fires. I think that number is close to 800 firefighters. I’m going by memory. Several helicopters and many fire trucks, along with other earth moving equipment are deployed to fight this fire. Among the fire fighters are local departments, Park Service, Forest Service, and people from other places in America.
There is a huge outpouring of financial and volunteer support going on right now. Paula and I will be donating money to those affected. We just haven’t decided how or where. Thousands of people were displaced from their homes and businesses. They need help and they will get it.
We will never forget what happened here.
Have a great day and thank you for being here with us.
December 5, 2016
Respond to: Byron@littleriveroutfitters.com
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