04/16/11
Insects and other foods the trout may be eating:
1.    Blue-winged Olives
2  .  Blue Quills
3.    Cinnamon Caddis (mostly Abrams Creek)
4.    Little Brown Stoneflies
5.    Hendricksons and the Red Quills
6.    Streamers
7.    Little Short-horned Sedges
8.    American March Browns

Current Stream and Weather Conditions
There was a lot of rain that fell in the park last night. It depends on exactly where
you are referring to, but from the looks of the
National Weather Service Precipitation
Map (enter Smoky Mountains in the "go to location" box) there has already been
from 1.5 to 4 inches of rain. Much of the park has from 2 to 3 inches at 7:00 AM this
morning. It looks like the area around Pigeon Forge received around 1 to 2 inches,
depending on exactly where you are checking it out. The park will post their figures
later on today but keep in mind it will only be at one location. I'm finding the map to
be much more accurate from a general standpoint and of course, it is done by a
computer and doesn't have to wait on an employee to finish their coffee to post the
numbers. It could be they sleep in the mornings. Before we know it, they will be
adding a second person as a backup like they are doing for the air traffic control
towers. I wonder what will happen when they both go to sleep. Excuse, me ..back to
the weather.

The water level for Little River is near 5.5 and flowing at 2710 cfs. The record for
this date was 2100 back in 1994.  I guess that's from that 20% percent chance of
rain they were expecting for Townsend.

Oconaluftee (Birdtown) is at 3890, a record for this date since 1956. The problem
with these numbers is they are going to increase. It is raining now at my home in
Pigeon Forge and the wind sounds as if it will probably send a tree limb through our
new Mercury SUV any time now. I think the big part of it will end later this morning.

Tomorrow should be a beautiful day. We have several of our Perfect Fly customers
visiting from out of town this weekend. I hope they can find a place to fish when this
ends. It has to be very disappointing. I hope everyone stays out of the water and is
careful with the conditions we have until things improve.

American March Brown - Spinners
When the American March Brown mayflies hatch, they do so from in the mornings
until the late afternoons. It's difficult to pinpoint any time of day that they hatch.
There's rarely a peak to the hatch. This isn't true of the spinner fall. Everything
takes place in a very short time span of as little as an hour. This congregates the
spinners from the previous days hatch into a short period of time, and concentrates
the insects on the water. The results is the trout are able to make a good meal of
the March Brown spinners.  The spinner fall is the best part of the American March
Brown hatch.

There is a problem with it. It usually occurs after the sun has set, just prior to dark. It
all depends on the cloud cover. If it is cloudy, and the sun is hidden, they will fall
earlier in the afternoon, usually by an hour or two. Most of the time when the
spinners do fall, the light is low enough that you can barely see the flies in the air or
on the water even though they are large mayflies. It's best to use a small skim net
and check the surface of the water every few minutes.  Of course, the trout will
continue to eat the spinners long after they fall into the water.

The trout will congregate below the fast water in current seams, at the ends of long
runs, the heads of pools and other places where the current congregates the
spinners. This allows the trout to remain in one area and sip the spinners from the
surface. It is also difficult to see the trout feeding on them. They do not make a
splashy rise. They  leave only a small rise ring when they sip the spinners. Unless
the remaining light is hitting the water just right, you may never notice either one of
them.

It's best to concentrate on the presentation of the spinner imitation by watching the
end of your fly line. If the remaining light is helping any, you should be able to track
you spinner imitation well enough to detect the strikes. In other words, even though
you may not be able to see your fly, you know where it is close enough to detect the
take.

If you loose sight of the fly, and you don't think it is near trout eating the spinners,
you can make the fly move by stopping the drift and slightly raising the tip of your fly
rod. The purpose of this is to deliberately create drag for a second or two. To avoid
spooking the trout, just make certain you attempt this trick before the fly gets into
the productive strike zone or area where you think the trout are feeding on the
spinners.

If the spinner fall is fairly heavy and you get in the right position in the stream (or on
the bank) just before the spinners start falling, you stand an excellent chance of
catching several fish in a very short time. On several occasions, Angie and I have
discovered the March Brown spinners mixed in with the Red Quill and Hendrickson
spinners. Because the hatch last so long you may find that spinners of the Pale
Evening Duns, Sulfers, Light and Cream Cahills and other mayflies mixed in with the
American March Brown spinners. In the low light, the mixture of spinners makes
catching trout even easier. You just have to hope that you can get in on this action
while it is still legal to fish.



























O
ur "Perfect Fly" American March Brown Spinner

2011 James Marsh