|Reports for the Smoky Mountains and East Tennessee Tailwaters|
Fishing Reports for The Smoky Mountains
|Dry Flies||Nymphs and Emergers||Nymphs
Emergers - Page 2
|Wet Flies/Soft Hackle Flies||Tailwater Trout Flies|
|Realistic Flies||Tailwaters Hatch Charts||Smoky
Top Tailwater Trout Flies
Top Smoky Mountain
Top Smoky Mountain
SEE MORE REPORTS
Reports 1-23 have been deleted due to website disc space
|JULY 25, 2007||KENNETH MURPHY ON THE MIDDLE PRONG OF THE LITTLE PIGEON RIVER|
Murphy, from near Chicago, met with me today and we decided to fish at
Greenbriar. The creek is good shape and we spent most of the day there
working on skills. Ken had a tough time mastering the casting and
mending techniques so we just fished awhile and we went back to a good
open area, where we practiced those disciplines, which were hard for him
to master. All of the fish that Ken caught were pretty small, but the
practice was really the better part of the day.
In the middle of the afternoon , it clouded up, so we packed it up and drove back to Townsend. I hope Ken works hard on the skills that we found to be troublesome and maybe we can get together again one day.
|JULY 18, 2007||RIVER TIME FOR BOOMER|
got Boomer out this morning and we drove down to the Holston River,
below Cherokee Dam. I have not been able to spend as much time with him
as I would like for the past 5 months. Today seemed like a good time to
do a little fishing and let him get some exercise.
We didn't have to go too far and we were in the water pretty fast. I just struggle with him most of the time because he is so aggressive when he is around water. No amount of training seems to allow me to get out in the river and fish, without having him swim right along side of me. When I hook a fish, there is no stopping him. He goes right for it. I barely got started when I hooked the first one. I only had him for a second and he was off. I cast again and had another very nice fish to take my fly. He ran from the middle of the river to the near side and stopped. That was only a breather. Boomer went after him instantly and he set my reel on fire. He ended the run with a jump and went back across the river again toward the other side. Boomer was right after him and I was yelling my head off. It took almost 20 minutes to get the fish to settle down and Boomer is right behind him the whole time. He followed the fish right up to my hand. It was a beautiful chunk and it was so thick that I could hardly get my hand around it. I saw that I needed to get out and let Boomer just have some play time, so that is what we did. He had a great morning!
The fish in the Holston River, below Cherokee Dam have sure put some growth on this summer. They are pure brutes and it is looking like they might make it thru another season. If this happens, we are going to have fish in the 20-30 inch range scattered all up and down this stream.
If we can help with a guided wade or float trip, just call us at 423-586-6198.
|JULY 16, 2007||FISHING THE CUMBERLAND RIVER|
Hagans is a friend and customer. He has been in touch with me on 2-3
occasions about fishing the South Holston and Cumberland Rivers. I have
sent flies to him and some of them seem to have been effective as well
as some of his own. Today, he sent some pictures of his last trip to the
Cumberland. I hope you enjoy them.
|JULY 12, 2007||FISHING FOR SMALLMOUTH WITH RICHARD MOODY|
Moody, from Chattanooga was visiting the Smokies and he wanted to try a
day of Smallmouth fishing on Little River, outside of the Park.
With some help from Gary Troutman to give us ideas of the best locations
to fish, we started just behind the Walland Post Office, and worked
upstream. This water is beautiful, and just screams "smallmouth
", in every direction that you look. We began the morning, fishing
poppers on a 9ft. 6wt. rod, and to my surprise, this young man knew
exactly how to handle this rig and did not need any instructions. I was
carrying a small ultra light spinning rod to hand over to him when we
came to water that was a little too large for a flyrod to cover. We used
both thru this area of the river. We moved no fish here, and we moved
upstream to a different location. Again, the water was perfect for
smallmouth and redeye, but we did not see a single fish. There were none
feeding as well. After several hours of this, we had lunch and moved
farther down river. We drove down below the second dam and got in the
river again. Richard fished with all the skills of a professional, but
we could not get a single fish to show itself. We just decided that the
frontal system that came through the day before, had caused all the fish
to stop feeding. We called it a day and came back to Little River
Outfitters. It was great watching this young man show his casting skills
and working the water so well. We will wish him well on his next
smallmouth excursion. My thanks to him for allowing me to guide him. My
thanks to Gary for lending his past experience as well.
|JULY 10, 2007||FRANK and KERRI SEIGLER FLOATING THE HOLSTON RIVER|
|I met with Frank Seigler and his wife Kerri, on the 10TH, at Indian Cave, on the Holston River. We started our float to Nances Ferry at about 9:00AM. Frank had wanted to fish for Smallmouth and we started him pretty quickly with a Deceiver. Kerri wanted to fish for trout. They had both just finished a Beginners Flyfishers Course at LROs. Since they were still new to the sport, we had to work on casting skills all the way downriver. The trout began taking Caddis that were hatching so Frank switched back to a trout set up. Both members hooked fish, but Frank was the first to land one. It made several jumps and actually made one of the highest leaps that I have ever seen a trout make. Frank's wife, Kerri hooked a very large fish and it really put a bend in the rod. The rod tip went all the way to the water and then tore the hook out. It seems like the fish in the Holston River, below Cherokee Dam are in the best shape this year, because of generation keeping the water cold all the way to Knoxville. They fight like tarpons when you hook one. We continued on down the river until we were hit by a thunderstorm. We pulled the boat over and got out on the bank under a tree. When the storm ended, we moved on down toward Nances Ferry and a Crane fly hatch began. Frank's wife, hooked more fish, but just could not hold onto them. We finished the day by losing another fish right in front of the takeout. We had a great fun day and I hope they learned a lot while we were on the river. Frank wants to come back and do a wade trip in the shoals. My thanks to them for allowing me to guide them. The flies that worked were:|
|JULY 09, 07||ROBERT WOOLY, JULIE FUSILIER, AND DAUGHTER SAVANNAH|
received a call from Robert and Julie after they had been to the Orvis
Store in Sevierville. They had each bought a new 9ft 5 wt. rod and they
wanted to try them out in a local stream. I recommended fishing the
South Holston River and we met the next morning. We arrived at the Weir
Dam and went down stream to wait for the pulse to start going down. We
were in the water in just a few minutes working on casting and mending
techniques. Julie was first and she was almost dwarfed by the 9ft. 5wt.
rod. She only looked like she was about 4ft. 9in. tall and would not
have weighed 100lbs. if she had fallen in. She really worked hard on
mastering her skills. Next, was Robert. We had him in the river working
rising fish in about 20 minutes. I sent Julie downstream and she had a
fish on in a few minutes. She managed to hook and land the first one in
about 30 minutes. Robert was having a little harder time fooling them in
the slicker water. Over the course of 2 hours, Julie hooked, but lost,
several fish. We finally moved when it was close to time for the full
generation to begin. We ate a late dinner at Webb's Store and then
finished out the evening on Big Springs Road. Julie was exhausted by the
5:00PM and we called it a day. It was great to get to fish with this
couple and their daughter. We hope to see them again in the future.
If Carolyn or I can help with a guided trip, please contact us at:
|JULY 7, 07||BACK ON THE SOUTH HOLSTON IN MID SUMMER|
|I had to run back up to Tri Cities again to take care of some business and I stopped in to talk with some of the guys that were getting ready to hit the river. I got to meet several new folks and renew my acquaintance with some that I had known from years past. It's always good to meet fellow flyfishermen on the stream. I hurried with business and hellos and moved down the river to await the pulse. I managed to catch a couple before it arrived. As it started down, I got back into the river and actually did not see many fish feeding at first. That didn't matter. They were just looking for the Beadhead Rubberlegged Prince Nymph to come floating their way. This fly just keeps on proving itself each time that I go up to the South Holston River. If you haven't bought any of the flies to use on the tailwaters, you are missing a special treat. I encourage you to just look at these pictures, and multiply that by 2 or 3. That is about the number that I caught and I did not fish more than 100yards to do it. A small Sulfur hatch took place after the pulse and I hope that it got even bigger as the full generation took place. It was great to be on the water today and I encourage you again to give this Prince Nymph some serious consideration for your next trip. Just tie it in to the bend of the hook onto 24 inches of 6X tippet. Cast upstream, mend properly, and it will do the rest. The fish just can't control themselves.|
|JULY 3, 2007||GETTING TOGETHER WITH GREAT FRIENDS TO SHARE GOOD FOOD , FELLOWSHIP, AND BLUE GRASS MUSIC|
received a call from one of my best friends this week and they invited
Carolyn and I to come over to their mountain farm and join in with quite
a few others for a good pre July 4th "mountain get together".
We were caught up on our guided trips so off to Hancock County we went
to join in the fun. We arrived at about 6PM and the crowd was gathering.
There are friends and then there are good old East Tenn. mountain
friends. This event took place in the hills and mountains of the Chestnut
Ridge Community which is located just North of Sneedville, Tennessee, in
Hancocke County. This area still looks like it did over 100 years ago.
It is the homeplace of Linda Burke, a former working partner in
Morristown. She and her husband, Jerry Burke, are the owners of
Burke-Ailey Construction Company located in Morristown Tennessee. They
had purchased this mountain farm a few years ago and built a small
rustic cabin on it. This is their place of retreat when they can get
away from work and Carolyn and I have spent many hours there with them,
just relaxing or riding 4 wheelers. The views are straight from heaven.
The upper waters of the Clinch River are down at the bottom of the many
ridges. There is one small trout stream close by. The whole setting is a
testament to hard work and determination to succeed, even when you have
come from humble beginnings. We can't thank them enough for sharing
their good fortunes with us and hundreds of other people.
Tonight, everyone had brought a covered dish and a large farm wagon was the dinner table for the many people that showed up. We ate first and then we were treated to some great Blue Grass Music. One of the top banjo pickers in the country was a part of the group that performed from the front porch of the cabin. The entertainment was fantastic. We met many old friends that we have come to know thru the years. What could be better and more relaxing than a setting like this.
Carolyn and I count ourselves fortunate to have friends of this caliber and to be able to just spend time in such a beautiful locale. Our thanks again to Jerry and Linda Burke for asking us to be a part of such a great East Tennessee event. We hope that some of you get to visit this place called "OVER HOME" at some time in the future.
Hugh and Carolyn
|July 2, 2007||Backcountry Trip to Deep Creek With the Flournoys|
Chuck Flournoy from Lynchburg, Virginia met with me at 8 am at the
Deep Creek Trailhead in Bryson City, North Carolina. They had
taken their son to camp in Black Mountain, North Carolina and were
wanting to get some fishing time in before heading home. Both are
very familiar with backcountry hiking and flyfishing. Chuck has
been fishing since he was a young boy and Kathy has been flyfishing for
about 16 years and spin fishing since she was a young girl.
They have fished in lots of places and shared many interesting stories
about their travels. Chuck coaches soccer, and Kathy jogs 3 miles
daily, so both were in great physical shape.
We walked about a 1/2 mile or so to the first bridge, where they both fished a little before making the steep climb. There were no strikes, so we headed up the mountain. We hiked about 2 more hours until the stream came back to the trail and figured we had walked about 6 miles from the trailhead. We saw Rhododendron and Mountain Laurels along the way. Chuck said the only difference between the two, was the leaves. Rhododendron have the longer leaves. Kathy stated that the trail was even more beautiful with the blossoms scattered along the pathway.
Chuck was going to fish dry flies and Kathy, who enjoyed nymphing best, fished behind him with the nymphs. Chuck is also an experienced fly tier, especially saltwater flies. They both had lots of flies and had also bought flies from Black Mountain. I gave them some of our flies specific to the area.
We only saw an occasional fish rising. There were loads of small sized #18 and #20 black flies everywhere and some small moth like hatches, but no fish were feeding. The small beadhead prince nymph looked just like the black flies, but the fish weren't interested in these. In fact, Chuck, Kathy and I tried every fly that we all could think of to get the fish's attention, but they were in lock down mode. We used the 6X tippet and Chuck was even going to try the 7X. After several hours he said, "I just know that we aren't doing anything wrong". This husband and wife team were highly experienced and their casting and mending techniques were beautiful. We figured that there was a frontal system coming across, as the weather was overcast and rain drops were scattered.
About 3 pm we headed back down the mountain, and they fished when we were closer to the trailhead. Kathy hooked 2 fish with the Smoky Mountain Blackbird Softhackle, but didn't land them. We finally decided to call it a day and arrived back at the parking lot about 6 pm and a total trip of about 12 miles. Just as we arrived, it started to rain.
Kathy and Chuck are both wonderful people, whom I felt privileged to meet. I wish them and their son the very best.
|JULY 2, 2007||CHRIS AND IAN CHAMBERLIN, AND JIM PIERCE|
|Chris Chamberlin and Jim Pierce wanted to get 1/2 day of instruction for their first time ever with a flyrod. We drove to Metcalf Bottoms and got in the water and began working on casting and mending techniques. We finished at about 1:30 PM and let the fellas do a little fishing on their own as we moved upstream. This was a short introduction to flyfishing and I hope they can pick it up near their home, as the summer moves on. The guys both learned a lot of techniques and will be prepared as they get another opportunity this Summer. I thank them for allowing me to instruct them and I wish them well as new flyfishermen.|
|JUNE 30, 2007||BILL BOLINGER AND MIKE BATES ON THE SOUTH HOLSTON|
had the opportunity to spend one of the funniest days that I have had on
the water this year, with Bill Bolinger and Mike Bates. They wanted to
fish the South Holston River while the Sulfur hatches were taking place
and they sure got to see a show. They were such a comical pair to be
with that they kept me laughing all the time we were out.
We began the day at about 9:30AM, by going all the way to the twin islands to find water that was not being fished. Some Sulfurs were hatching off and they were into fish pretty quickly. Both guys were taking fish on Sulfur Compara Duns. There was a pulse at 12:00AM and we got right back into the water as it was going down. The Sulfur hatch really began in earnest as the water dropped. The air was full of them and the water was covered.
The men did their best catching by perfecting the Pile Cast and a downstream drift. At about the time the generation was to start, it came a storm. We went to eat at Webb's Store and it came down in buckets. We tried to fish afterwards and the rain just kept coming. The water turned dingy and we called it a day. What a great pair to be on the water with! I LAUGHED SO MUCH THAT MY SIDE HURT ON THE WAY HOME.
It was a great day of guiding and fishing, and I hope the guys enjoyed it as much as I did.
If you want to get in on this great Sulfur hatch on the south Holston River, please contact Carolyn or me at:
|JUNE 29, 2007||FISHING THE SOUTH HOLSTON WITH GREG ZACHARIAS|
Zecharias and I fished the South Holston River today and he really put
forth some hard work while we were there. Greg teaches school in
Columbus and he and his wife had decided to come down and spend a little
time in the Great Smokies. I had told him that the water conditions were
getting pretty bad and we just decided to make the trip to a tailwater.
We just did not find many bugs hatching at all so we tried many different combinations to see what they might be interested in. The Sulfur Compara Dun seemed to draw the most interest and I carried another rod that was rigged the BHRLPN. Greg hooked several fish, but had a very difficult time landing them. We just called them long distance releases. We had a great time on the river and I enjoyed the company of Greg very much. We hope to see them back in the future.
If Carolyn or I can help with a guided trip, please contact us at:
|June 27, 2007||A Half Day on Little River With The Walker Sisters|
(Walker) Eppard and Melissa Walker are the Walker sisters. Renee
is from Florida and has a vacation home in Wears Valley. Melissa
is from Chicago and is here visiting Renee. Renee and her father
(from Nashville, TN) had taken 1/2 day flycasting instruction several
weeks ago. Renee is attempting to get Melissa interested in
flyfishing so that they can fish while spending time
The day was filled with instruction. I had forewarned them that the fishing conditions were not good due to the recent drought, but hopefully we could rouse a trout or two. My goal for the day was to teach the ladies enough so that they could fish by themselves, even if no fish were caught today. Instructions were given on how to rig the rod, stretch the fly line to straighten it, the difference in the size of tippet, using dry flies, nymphs and emergers and the use of droppers from drys and nymphs, streamside etiquette, safety while on the water and at the streamside, how to land a fish, remove a hook from the fish and themselves as needed, read the water for location of fish, how to look for and match the flies that were hatching and look for terrestrials, and nymphs on the rocks. I also instructed on the double nymph rig that Hugh and I use frequently. We drove around to point out the best fishing sites.
We started and ended at the Elkmont area. The water was very low, so we used 6X tippet and the Smoky Mountain Blackbird Softhackle for starters. A while later and after only 1 strike, we added the Biot Bodied Cahill as the lead fly and the Blackbird as the dropper. There were no more strikes, but these 2 ladies became proficient at the roll cast and casting short distances, while staying out of the trees.
I feel that the Walker sisters are information-equipped enough to go fishing by themselves. Sooner or later they will start catching fish. I told them to call or email for questions that would arise as needed. Renee stated that she had learned so many new things, that it would take her a while to absorb everything. I told her that everyone learns something new every time that they go out.
I wish these 2 fine ladies the best in their future flyfishing adventures.
If Hugh or I can
assist you with a trip, just let us know.
|June 26, 2007||Rick Pitts on Little River With Carolyn|
from Omaha, Nebraska and was in Knoxville on a business trip. He
was able to squeeze in a half day of fishing before catching his plane
on Tuesday afternoon, so we met on Little River at 6 a.m. We were the
first on the river that I could see. I told him that the
river conditions were not very good, due to the drought; but he was just
be glad to be in the outdoors in a beautiful mountainous area.
Rick stated that his goal was to catch at least one fish.
Rick is an
accomplished fisherman and has fished many rivers in the West. He
has never been to the Smokies. I instructed him on the double
nymph rig that Hugh and I use in the Smokies. He started with nymphs,
and I loaded my rod with drys; so that he could alternate between the 2
kinds as needed. We saw small caddis flies flying around of
various sizes, mostly #24 and #26, but no fish were feeding on the
Caddis. The only other fly that I saw was a Sulphur.
About an hour after we started, Rick hooked a small Rainbow with a #18
Beadhead Rubberlegged Prince Nymph. We were both in hopes that
this was a good sign and more catches were to be soon had. We used many
combinations, including a Zebra nymph from a Stimulator, Caddis and
If Hugh or I can assist you with a guided trip, let us know.
|June 24, 2007||Bob and Nate Powell On The South Holston River|
and son Nate, picked up where we left off, the next day on the South
Holston River. I made my mind up to work with Nate on his casting and
mending skills as hard as we could, so that he would eventually catch a
nice fish or two. The scheduled pulse turned out to be a full hour of
generation, so everyone got back in the water as it was dropping down to
a safe wading level. This was when the Sulfurs started hatching and the
fun began. I started just above the islands with Nate and we
worked upstream. This was intense, prolonged work and it was designed to
ingrain all the movements that long delicate casts and mends
require. Nate had a difficult time allowing the flyline to slide
thru his fingers as he was making his casts. Many clients struggle with
this as did Carolyn a few years ago. It is hard to tell the muscles on
the right side to grip the rod firmly and tell the other hand and
fingers to very lightly allow the flyline to slip thru them as the false
casts are being made, or on the final casting stroke. Doing this
repeatedly, and having someone to instruct you of what you are doing
right or wrong, is a slow tedious process. It is absolutely required and
it will pay off in the future. We continued to do this as we worked
upstream and as we came to some slightly broken water, Nate had a real
nice brown to take his fly. When he set the hook, it was a little too
fast. We talked about using the method of saying "one
thousand" AND THEN SETTING THE HOOK. He has about 4 strikes and
missed each one of them because he was a little too fast. We were now
beginning to approach a set of riffles and I told him that he would have
a lot more strikes in this area. They began to happen and he hooked his
first fish. I showed him the correct way to land a fish without a net
and he used the technique from that point on. After catching two or
three, he hooked a very nice brown and the battle was on. It took about
12-15 minutes because it was his first big fish and I wanted him to be
able to land it by himself. He followed everything that I had shown him
and landed a beautiful 15 in beauty. I took several good pictures as he
was playing the fish and Carolyn and his Father looked on from
downstream. It was a great moment to remember, for him. Bob was
downstream doing some catching of his own. Both guys worked hard and had
great fun for the rest of the time catching several more. We broke for
lunch as the time for generation was about upon us. We finished up the
evening farther downstream as thunderstorms approached. We had a
wonderful time with Bob and Nate. We hope the bug has truly bitten them.
If Carolyn or I can help with a guided trip or with flies, please contact us at:
|June 23, 2007||Bob and Nate Powell on Little River|
I met with Bob and Nate Powell. We fished Little River and worked on
casting and mending skills for the whole day. Bob had many fish to take
his Snowshoe Sulfur, but he had trouble hooking up with many of them. I
believe he holds the record on missed strikes. Nate had some of the same
problems but he worked diligently all day on skills and techniques.
Tomorrow we will hit the South Holston River for some tailwater fishing.
Be back tomorrow.
|JUNE 23, 2007||Fishing with Pete Klara on Little River|
lives in Tullahoma, TN near Nashville and drove to Dandridge Friday
night. We met on Saturday morning and drove to Metcalf
Bottoms. Pete had never been to the Smokies, because he hasn't
lived in Tennessee long. He has done quite a bit of flyfishing
before, but we reviewed the basics. I showed him the Pitzen knot,
and he was able to tie one after only a couple of tries. Pete is a
neurosurgeon and is very familiar with tying knots in surgery.
We started at the Bottoms with a Stimulator and then added several droppers. There were several strikes from small fish, but no connects. We moved on up the river to see if we could find an area with more water, since the river is so low. I showed Pete the double nymph rig set-up that Hugh and I use. We tried multiple combinations of drys, nymphs and emergers. I would keep one rod loaded with a different combination of flies, and he would switch out rods, when the water was unproductive. Pete got several strikes with no connects, and then a small rainbow hit a #18 Beadhead Rubber Legged Prince Nymph.
Some of the flies we tried were: Stimulators, Caddis, Sulphurs, and Ant dry flies: Beadhead Rubber Legged Prince Nymphs, Biot Bodied Cahill Nymphs, Smoky Mountain Blackbird Softhackle, and Blackbird Deerhair Emergers.
The fishing was very tough due to low water conditions, temperatures and the weekend crowds. Pete is a very nice gentleman, and a very good fisherman. I wish him the very best in his future fishing endeavors.
|JUNE 22, 2007||BRAD DEMINK ON LITTLE RIVER|
Demink and I met this morning at LROs and we were off for a half day
trip on Little River. Brad had some experience at fishing for smallmouth
bass and other fish on the Great Lakes. This day would encompass some
small stream fishing under very low water conditions and water temps
that are getting pretty warm. We started off with lots of flies hatching
,but only small fish were feeding on them. We had a dry fly on , but
there didn't seem to be a whole lot of interest in it. We switched to
the trusty Blackbird and after some initial casting work, we were onto
fish. Brad caught a good 1/2 dozen small to medium sized rainbows and
made himself look pretty good by early afternoon. I was proud of him
because he had mastered many new fishing techniques throughout the day.
This is the way that I like to see new fly fishermen develop. They start
the day off with more tangles than they have ever seen in their life. By
the time we have finished, they are catching fish and doing much better
at their basic skills. What a way to enjoy the day in the mountains. I
hope to see Brad again in the coming year and I wish him good luck on
the Great Lakes.
Phone Number: 423-586-6198 or
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