We’re wet wading now so you could say that summer fishing has arrived. Water levels are in pretty good shape in the Smokies after significant rainfall last week. It was a relatively dry spring here in East Tennessee and our local reservoirs are far from full. While this may not be ideal for water skiing or bass fishing tournaments it does mean that we’ll have relatively predictable flows on our tailwater rivers this summer as TVA doesn’t have much water for long periods of power generation.
Among our favorite things to do in the summer is to hike into the Smoky Mountain backcountry for some great dry fly fishing. Depending on the stream we’re casting over rainbows, browns, or brookies. The fish aren’t near so big as the ones we encounter on our floats but they are usually even more colorful and have plenty of fight in a smaller package.
We still like to get out on the stream even when we’re not guiding. We tend to walk more and fish less when we take our kids for a hike but they’re still eager to catch a few for themselves. Here’s a pic of our son Boone making good used of the fly rod while we ate a streamside lunch.
Now that summer heat is here we’ll be expecting the smallmouth to start taking poppers. We’ve spent a limited amount of time chasing smallies this season but that will change over the next month. If you’ve never seen a smallmouth bass come to a popper you’re missing out. It’s every bit as fun as trout fishing with a dry fly!