10/31/11
Insects and other foods the trout may be eating:
1.    Blue-winged Olives
2.    Little Yellow Quills (
Heptagenia Group)
3.    Needle Stoneflies
4     Slate Drakes
5     Sculpin, Minnows (Streamers)
6.    Grasshoppers
7.    Ants
8.    Beetles
9  .  Craneflies
10.  Great Brown Autumn Sedge

Was I The Only One Fishing?
I got a chance to fish four different streams yesterday but of course, only for a very
short time in each case. I wanted to see if I could find any changes occurring from
what I have seen during the past few weeks and after the weather has changed to
cooler temperatures. The bottom line answer is I didn't find anything any different than
I expected except maybe less spawning brook trout than I anticipated and a few more
bugs than I thought I would.

I fished the middle Oconaluftee River, Walker's Camp Prong, Upper Little Pigeon
River, Little River and the Middle Fork of Little Pigeon River. That's really just
stopping along a few places on highway #441 that crosses the park, driving a short
distance over to Elkmont, and then swinging by the Middle Prong of Little Pigeon, or
Greenbrier as some call it.

I was surprised. I didn't see a single person fishing. I did see some vehicles that could
belong to anglers. I didn't venture down Little River past the turn to Elkmont and for
that reason, probably missed some locals that were fishing. I avoided that area
thinking others may have fished the areas and/or tourist may have spooked the trout
near the pulloffs along the road.. I expected to see several anglers. It has always
amazed me how out of town visitors seem to ignore the later part of October and
November. I'm sure it has a lot to do with hunting and football season. It's just such a
wonderful time to fish and there's usually very few anglers that take advantage of it.

I am very late getting this report out and that's because I was very tired this morning. I
got up early at my usual time but didn't feel very well and watched the morning new
and rested some. I had a busy day yesterday from early, early morning until after
dark, not so much to do with fishing, as other things I did. I will be writing our normal
Tuesday fly fishing strategy article tomorrow and provide much more detail regarding
my observations.

I caught at least one trout at each location and three at Greenbrier. I doubt I put in
over two hours of actual fishing time, probably less. I will deal with this more tomorrow.

What I did find that was not exactly expected was more insects than I have seen
recently. I guess the cooler weather and drop in water temperature caused some
hatches to take place. I found every insect listed above (except terrestrials,  and Slate
Drakes) in total, but of course not at any one location.

There were quite a few
baetis Blue-winged Olives and a few Little BWOs on the
Oconaluftee River that I'm not sure about the species. I didn't catch or look at them
closely. That's not unusual because the river has a slightly higher pH than many
streams in the park. There were lots of Little Yellow Quills hatching on the upper Little
Pigeon River and Walkers Camp Prong. There were a few Little Needle Stoneflies
flying around from previous hatches. The Middle Prong of Little Pigeon also had a few
little BWOs and I spotted one Great Autumn Brown Sedge. I didn't spot any
baetis but
I was later getting there than they hatch in the early afternoon and the Middle Prong
isn't exactly
baetis type water. .None of the hatches were huge but they were good
considering the high pressure system.

I've probably made fifty errors so far and I don';t intend to edit this, so if so, please
forgive me. I'm still tired this morning.  

Much more tomorrow.

Our Just Released New DVD,
"Stalking Appalachian Trout".

Copyright 2011 James Marsh