Fly Fishing report, May 9

It’s been a while since we’ve posted a report because we’ve been so busy. We’ve been on the water in a number of locations. Not only have we been floating the tailwaters and wading the creeks, but we recently returned from our weekend backcountry camp trip to Hazel Creek on the North Carolina side of the Smokies.

Hazel Creek fished well, but the second half of Saturday got blown out by heavy rain. In spite of the weather, it cleared up by Sunday morning and we got some more fishing in before heading home. Conditions were perfect on Friday and everyone caught fish. In fact, Andy Sonner caught an extremely large brown trout. The picture Andy got of the fish is pictured below.

Big Brown Trout

Judging by the length of the rod grip the fish is somewhere in the range of 24-25″. While everyone caught fish, most were in the 6-9″ range as you’d expect. We’ve also got a group picture at the Hazel Creek Hilton plus a couple of stream shots.

Group picture, Hazel Creek trip

You can see more about the past week on Tom Chandler’s TroutUnderground blog. He backpacked up Hazel while we were there. This was after his float on the Holston.

We’ve been floating the Holston quite a bit lately. It seems as if there are fewer fish this year but the average size has increased. We’ve caught more fish in the 18″ range at this point this spring than we did all last year. Our good friend Tom Chandler of TroutUnderground fame has been staying with us here in Townsend and floated the Holston with his local fishing buddy Rich Margiotta. Rich put on a clinic and made the home team look good on the Holston. Tom also did well, but seemed to find all the trout with teflon lips and missed a good number of strikes.

We’re certainly past all the cold weather and brook trout fishing in the Smokies has gotten quite good. I took Bill Fidler of Memphis out for some backcountry hiking and fishing for brookies. He also caught a few good sized rainbows in that section of stream.

Smallmouth fishing is also heating up and we’re looking forward to floating the Pigeon River, lower Little River, and the Abrams Creek embayment of Chilhowee Lake. Poppers fish well along with small streamers in all these locations.