A Pattern Emerges: More High Water in the Smokies

All that rain we got over the weekend has area rivers and streams running high once again. A real hardcore angler can find some spots to fish in the Smokies today, but we’ve actually postponed guide trips we had scheduled for today so we could get our folks out during better conditions.

All this water has us humming a particular tune we thought we’d share with you. Pretty good stuff while reading a fishing report or driving to the river….


As such, nymphing will be the best method to stick with over this week. We’re not skimping on the split shot either. It won’t take much, but a #6 or #4 shot could make a huge difference in your catch rate. We’d recommend a dropper rig of a Tellico or Tellico Prince fished with a Pat’s Nymph or Zelon Nymph. A Copper John is another good one to try. It sinks great and has some flash so the fish will see it .

Ever get the urge to strip a Bugger a big, nasty streamer through the big holes? This would be a great time to try it. We’re suckers for River Rabbits. Fortunately the weather forecast is full of sunshine, although we’ve got some more rain coming again this weekend.

You can head up high for brookies, but be careful. High elevation streams in the Smokies are very steep. Even though they run off first, they’re the most treacherous places to wade. Speaking as someone who body surfed a few rapids early in his fly fishing career, I wouldn’t recommend it.

All this water has the tailwaters running as well. Even though the Clinch is only running one generator they’re spilling enough water to make the flow closer to a two generator flow or even more.  The Hiwassee and South Holston are both fishable, but they’re purely reserved for those with boats. The Holston River below Cherokee Dam has some good schedules for wading right now, but that might not last long. The reservoir is filling fas there as well.