You shoulda been there….

We don’t mean to taunt, but I hope you’re getting something valuable accomplished if you haven’t been fishing in the past 3 days. I said it in the last report, but let me reiterate: Spring fly fishing in the Smokies is here!

I hit Little River yesterday with my good fishing buddy Doug Sanders and the bugs were hatching. We’re both dry fly sorts who will fish a nymph when conditions require. Let me just say that split shots and strike indicators never left the vest and we used plenty of Aquel and Frog Fanny.

Quill Gordons were on the water as well as Blue Quills. Doug made good use of a quill bodied parachute dry fly that I think was #14, perhaps #12. I used a #12 Haystack that came from a pile I tied back in the foul weather we had about a month ago.

I was on the river today with buddy and fellow guide Tim Doyle. Caleb Abramson, Newport native and prodigy of the Smoky Mountain wet fly, was fishing with Tim and I tagged along. It’s hard to say if the fishing was as good today as it was yesterday, but it wasn’t bad. While there were at least as many bugs, there may not have been as many rising trout. Tim and I both caught enough on dries to be satisfied and neither of us tied on a nymph. Caleb brought fish up on the dry fly but had a tougher time. He admitted not fishing much since last spring on account of the drought and his job writing for the Newport newspaper.

Interesting report from another Smoky Mountain trout stream today; in an effort to spread the good fishing around, my buddy Doug headed over to Abrams Creek today to sample the fishing over there. I advised him that regardless of how many bugs were hatching he would probably have to resort to nymphs to catch some fish. I can’t remember how many times I’ve fished that stream when there were tons of bugs on the water and I couldn’t buy a strike on top.

Doug reported that even with the best hatch he’s seen this season he could only round up a few fish on nymphs all day. Abrams Creek fared better through the drought than Little River so I’m sure the fish are there, just not eating today. Don’t despair. Those fish will come around.

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