Back Behind the Oars

For the past few weeks we’ve seen some negotiable, if not consistent, flows on our local tailwaters. Last weeks cold, high flows in the Smokies meant that we should hitch up the drift boat to find the best opportunities to hook some trout.

Holston River Rainbow Trout

There were some very nice fish in the mix and it was such a nice day I had to stop a minute to remember to pull the camera out. Over the course of the day we fished a pretty even mix of nymphs and streamers. The best fish took the streamer but overall we had more takes with the nymph.

The streamers worked best in fishy runs that looked quiet, but we found a number of fish dimpling near the surface in many runs of water. Midges were the fish’s primary focus, but we were hooking enough on Zelon Nymphs that we didn’t ever stop long enough to change over to a midge rig.

Tim Masicupp Hooked Up

Hooked up again!

Our old buddy Tim Masincupp was along for the day and he’s spent a good deal of time lately hunting ducks. We packed a shotgun along just in case a “cast and blast” trip was in order, but we only saw a very few ducks from a long distance. We did make good use of the shotgun though.

Shooting Mistletoe

Tim blasted a nice bundle of mistletoe out of a sycamore tree for us to garnish our home for the holidays.

This week looks like a bit of a flip flop from last week’s fishing conditions. Some heavy rains have the reservoirs getting higher than TVA wants them in winter so flows have been bumped up quite a bit on the Clinch and Holston Rivers. The South Holston looks like it still has some flows to favor wading. It also looks like the Watauga should have some good flows, although not so regular as is typical.

On the contrary, stream flows in the Smokies will be much improved from last week. Flows are a little high, but reasonable for this time of year. We’re also going to see milder weather this week with much warmer temperatures so the fish should be active enough slurp up some nymphs.