07/01/11
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.    Cream Cahills
6.    Sulphurs
7.    Little Yellow Stoneflies
8.    Little Green Stoneflies
9.    Golden Stoneflies
10.  Slate Drakes
11.  Streamers (Sculpin, Minnows)
12.  Inch Worms
13.  Grasshoppers
14.  Ants
15.  Beetles

Planning a Yellowstone Fly Fishing Trip?
If your planning on fishing Yellowstone National Park this year, i suggest you read the
report we recently posted. Conditions will be quite different from what you would
usually expect.
Yellowstone Update

Brook Trout Streams - Part 11
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.

Indian Camp Creek
Indian Camp Creek is one of those streams that's not well known, simply because it's
almost invisible. Don't laugh too hard. Angie and I have fished it at least seven or
eight times, yet when I tried to show it to my friend Dennis McCarthy a couple of
months ago, I couldn't find the entrance to it. We went up and down highway #321
between Gatlinburg and Cosby twice before I even noticed where it runs under the
highway.  When I did, I still couldn't find the road that leads to Maddron Bald Trailhead
that happens to be the only way to get to it inside the park. I guess you could reach it
by hiking miles from another trailhead. I stopped at a store and talked to locals that
live within five miles of it and all they knew about it was where you could fish it outside
the park, miles from where I wanted to go. They told me all it had in it in the park was
little specs. I just thanked them and told them I didn't want to catch any speckled trout,
that I had caught about a million of them in Florida.

Side note:
You have to be nice to the Cosby people. I heard that a man from Cosby had his car
stolen in Galinburg one time and when the thief found out it belonged to a man from
Cosby, he took it back to Gatlinburg, parked it and ran. I understand he wasn't
worried about the Gatlinburg police, he was worried about his life.  

Now, I only own about fifteen GPS units. That's because  many of the companies give
them to me and that's because I do instructional DVD on how to operate them. At that
time I had automobile units, large chart plotter combo units, handhelds and every one
of them was at home. I even sold one to Dennis years before and he didn't have it
with him. I have detailed maps from several sources and even satellite images that I
have downloaded that show the little creek and most everything else in the park and I
still was lost looking for Indian Camp Creek. Once you get the right turnoff off #321,
you just drive down the residential looking road a short ways and low and behold,
your there.

Now, some of you may have read or think you have to park at the Maddron Bald
Trailhead and hike about a mile and a half to the stream. Well, I don't do it that way,
although I have a few times. I turn right down a residential street and go to where
there is a washed out bridge that crossed the creek at one time. I'm only guessing
that's a public street. It may be that it a private road. Never-the-less, being the idiot
fearless sole I am, I park there at the end of the dead end of the road across the
street from someone's cabin and fish up the stream from there. The park boundary is
only a few feet upstream. So far, no one has left a sign or called the Sheriff to me. Oh
well, now that I've clued everyone in on a possibly legal, or possibly illegal way (my
disclaimer) to fish Indian Camp Creek, let me tell you what a wonderful little stream it
is.  

Oh, I forgot the turnoff. Turn right off highway #321 onto Baxter Road and travel
about a half mile. You will pass some homes along the way. You'll see a sign pointing
towards the Maddron Bald Trailhead where you can turn right to access it. This trail is
a very popular hiking trial that leads to the Albright Grove, an old growth forest. It has
some of the oldest and tallest trees in the Smokies and is the main reason people go
there. I think the hikers intentionally try to hide it from fly fishers, or maybe they are
the only ones with enough sense to use a map.

Indian Camp Creek can be accessed from the Maddron Bald Trail but the trail, an
old maintenance road, doesn't get near the stream until about a mile and a half
upstream. The trail crosses it and some of its tributaries a few times in the
high elevations of the headwaters, but not the lower section of the stream. The
Creek runs through Indian Camp Valley.

The Albright Grove trail crosses the Maddron Bald Trail a couple of miles upstream.
You can get on it and cross the creek but at only one point. Other than that, you have
to make your own access from the Maddron Bald Trail down to the stream in the lower
section of the Indian Camp Creek.  Of course, you can fish it upstream from any point
you can access it.

We have found brook trout far below there, in the lower end of the stream but there's
far more rainbows than brook trout. The further you go upstream, the more they will
become plentiful. It's headwaters seems to have a good population.

Indian Camp Valley doesn't seem to have near as many Rhododendron as most
areas of the park. The stream isn't so congested with thick bushes as it is trees
near the water and it's possible to move up the banks in many places.

There are several small tributary streams in its headwaters. Otter Creek and
Copperhead Branch are two of them that are located in its the uppermost headwaters.
Jones Branch is another one downstream from those a short ways.

Cole Creek enters a lower section of Indian Camp Creek. It has a small tributary
called Maddron Creek. The lowest tributary in the park is Buckeye Creek which
flows into Indian Camp Creek not far inside the park boundary. I know the headwaters
have plenty of brook trout but I'm not certain about some of the lower elevation
tributaries. We haven't fished any of the low ones except near their confluence with
Indian Camp Creek where it's all rainbows.

Campsite #29 on Otter Creek in the headwaters area is the only campsite near
Indian Camp Creek. You have to do about as much hiking as fishing to fish the
headwaters area on a day trip. You could stay at this campsite (Otter Creek is a
headwater tributary) and fish for brook trout.

This is a beautiful area of the park, especially in the headwater area of the stream.
It's a favorite area of many hikers because of the scenery and the old growth
forest. We recommend it only for those anglers who want to fish different areas of
the park and who want to test new waters. Otherwise, Angie and I will take care of it. I
may even carry my out of town guest there this weekend, but don't wait for us to show
up. If we go there, and we most likely won't, we will be there before you probably even
get out of bed.
I also may not even be able to find the entrance to it.

Copyright 2011 James Marsh
____