Insects and other foods the trout may be eating:
1. Blue-winged Olives
2 . Green Sedges (Caddis)
3. Cinnamon Caddis (mostly Abrams Creek)
4. Little Sister Caddis (mostly Abrams Creek)
5. LIght Cahills
7. Little Yellow Stoneflies
8. Little Green Stoneflies
9. Golden Stoneflies
10. Slate Drakes
11. Streamers (Sculpin, Minnows)
12. Inch Worms
Brook Trout Streams - Part 4
It's the time of year when the high elevation streams really become important, so for the next few
days I will be pointing out some high elevation brook trout streams (and some not so high),
many of which you may be familiar with and some you may not be familiar with.
West Prong of Little Pigeon River
The West Prong of the Little Pigeon River isn't a brook trout stream as such but it
has brook trout from its beginning downstream to as low as the upper part of the
Chimney Picnic Area. It not only has some, it has some large ones. I think the
reason is that it is just a product of the size of the stream, more than anything.
The river also has plenty of rainbow trout. There's far more of them than brook
trout but you will still pick up some brook trout and again, i will emphasize that you
may catch some very nice ones.
There's a good reason few anglers are aware of this. Few anglers have fished this
section of the West Prong of Little Pigeon River. It's in a deep gorge or canyon-like
area that's very difficult to access. You can access it from the Chimney Picnic area
but getting upstream is very tough. To wade within the stream is rough due to the
room size boulders and deep pools. Hiking upstream is tough because of the thick
undergrowth surrounding the stream and the steep declines of the banks.
When you try to get out of the area, you have a steep, tough climb up to highway
#441. It would be a tough challenge (to say the least) to fish from the Picnic Area to
the Chimney Tops Trail, which is the first official access point to the river from the
Picnic area upstream. That means you would need to climb out at some other point
along #441. From the Tennessee side of the park, as you drive up from the
highway from the entrance to the Picnic Area to the Chimney Top Trailhead, you
can look down off to your right and see the area the stream flows through. In the
winter when the leaves are gone, you can see some of the stream well below the
If you fish this area, I recommend you have someone along with you. If you happen
to have an accident in this area, you don't want to be by yourself. It could be days
before anyone just happened to come along and find you.
Cream Cahill Spinners
We have spotted Cream Cahill spinners depositing their eggs at different times of
the day ranging from late afternoons (at this time of the year) to early evenings and
early mornings. We have watched brook trout eat the females while they were
darting around on the surface of the water depositing their eggs. One thing's for
certain. When they hatch, the will change to spinners and most of them will fall back
into the water. This includes the males just after they mate, and the females just
after they deposit their eggs. When this happens, you should fish an imitation of the
You should fish the same type of water you see them hatching from. Most likely that
would be the ends of the runs and riffles. The spent spinners may congregate in
the eddies and pockets along the banks and behind rocks and boulders. Clinger
mayflies deposit their eggs in the same fast water they hatch in.
Many anglers make the mistake of seeing spinners in the air and bushes but not
seeing the trout eat them and thinking they are not being eaten by the trout. They
just sip the spinners from the surface and it's very difficult to actually see the trout
take one. They will leave a small rise ring in calm water, but in pocket water such as
we have in the Smokies, you are very unlikely to see a rise ring.
We have never found a large concentration of them. I say that and will also say that
it's a big mistake to think it takes a lot of spinners on the water to interest the trout.
It only takes a few. They are mostly scattered and sparse spinner falls but when
and where they do fall, they will have a good chance of being eaten. The lack of
concentrations may be because some of them deposit their eggs during the
evening hours. It's a good idea to check for them in the early mornings, especially
later on in the Summer. They are extremely difficult to see once they are on the
water. You almost have to use a surface skim net to know they are there.
Perfect Fly Cream Cahill Spinner
2011 James Marsh