Rounding Out the Smoky Mountain Fly Fishing Season


It looks like all the best fishing of 2009 is behind us now. Our guide season always seems to end right after Thanksgiving weekend. That’s about right since fishing in the Smokies slows down about that time and most of us have other obligations to take care of as the calendar moves towards Christmas.

We should have a few more good days ahead but it’s doubtful that we’ll see any epic days over the next six weeks to rival what we’ve seen over the previous six weeks. Hopefully the tailwaters will come around shortly and we can have a few more long days of catching trout.

Don Heaton shows off an 18" brown that took a streamer

Don Heaton shows off an 18" brown that took a streamer

Charity and I had a pretty good day floating a group of four anglers on the Tuckaseegee River over the weekend. Water levels are still relatively high on the Tuck. It’s fine for floating but still on the high side for wading. We did see several anglers wading the river in a few spots but most seemed to have a tough time staying up in the swift flow.

We haven’t had the best luck drifting nymphs on the Tuck since the water levels have been this high and seem to attract far more fish to streamers. Charity’s boat gave the nymphs a shot but hooked all their fish on streamers. My boat stayed true with the streamers from start to finish. Most fish were in the 9″ – 12″ range but Don Heaton landed on really nice brown that stretched to 18″ on the tape.

Fishing in Great Smoky Mountains National Park has really slowed down this week as temperatures have fallen. There was a dusting of snow along the Appalachian crest this weekend and temperatures are forecast to be even colder this week.

Jerry Gatlin caught a pretty nice 11″ brown trout at Metcalf Bottoms on Little River last Friday – on a dry fly even – but fishing was generally slow. There were some other fish missed and others that either wriggled off the hook or refused to eat. In short, the fishing wasn’t impossible but it was slow in general

Don’t let that keep you off the water if you get the chance to go fishing, just don’t make it a point to be on the water at the crack of dawn. Fish nymphs in the afternoon and keep you expectations modest.

We’ll probably get out on the water for a few hours this week but are working on a few other things. Our first shipment of flies to our Fly of the Month subscribers goes out next week and we’re getting those packages prepared.

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  1. Pastor Ray says:

    I love your web page and the fishing reports are awesome, and the truthfullness is to be much appreciated, thanks to all of you. Ray