Insects and other foods the trout should be eating:
1. Blue-winged Olives and Little BWOs
2. Green Sedges (Caddisflies)
3. Cinnamon Caddis (Mostly Abrams Creek)
4. Little Short Horned Sedges
5. Eastern Green Drakes (Abrams Creek)
6. Hendricksons & Red Quills
7. American March Browns
8. Giant Stoneflies
9. Light Cahills
Most available/ Other types of available food:
10. Sculpin, Minnows (Streamers)
KISS A Bug Series - Sulphurs - Part 2
Nymphs and Emergers
The crawler nymphs inhibit the riffles, runs and pools of the moderate to slow currents. This
type of water is found only in a few places in the Smokies in the mid to larger size streams.
These are found in the section of stream that falls on a slow to moderate decline in elevation
as opposed to a steep decent.
You can catch trout on imitations of the nymph anytime or the year. Crawler nymphs cannot
hide underneath rocks and in tight places such as the clingers can and consequently, they are
eaten more frequently than most other types of nymphs. That said, the best time to fish our
"Perfect Fly" Sulphur Dun Nymph is just prior to a hatch. The nymphs become real active and
loose a lot of their normal caution.
These nymphs will move to the nearest, calmer, shallower water a few days prior to emerging.
This is usually just a few feet or less. When they begin to emerge to hatch, they are very
subject to being the meal of a hungry trout.
You can fish the nymph imitation prior to the hatch near the bottom using a strike indicator,
without an indicator, or on the swing. You are better off fishing a weighted nymph right on the
bottom. The fly works best if it is slowly bouncing along the bottom of the stream.
In the Smokies, we use an up and across presentation in most cases. In some of the local
tailwaters, there are some situation where the waters surface is smooth that you may want to
use a down and across presentation. It's more difficult to get close to the trout in smooth water
and the down and across cast lets you drift the fly over trout that are a good distance from
Just prior to the hatch, we much prefer to fish the nymph without a strike indicator but you can
still usually catch fish using one. They are best used in situations where the bottom of the
stream is fairly level.
When the nymphs are ready to emerge they propel themselves to the surface where they
shed their nymphal shucks. This by far the easiest time for the trout to eat them. They are
helpless at the time. They emerge just under or in the surface skim. The water is usually fairly
smooth in the locations the hatch occurs. This means you have to make a good presentation
to prevent spooking the trout feeding on the emerging duns.
The smooth, slow water areas that the sulphurs hatch in, may require you to fish for individual
fish that are rising. This is best done using a down and across presentation. Many anglers call
this "technical" fishing. It requires the same type of presentations sometimes necessary for fly
fishing spring creeks or smooth flowing tailwaters.
You may not be able to get very close to trout feeding on emerging sulphurs. This means a
longer cast is necessary. In the slower moving, smooth water this requires a well presented fly.
You may want to use a longer and lighter than normal leader. Leaders that are nine to ten feet
and from a 5X to 6X size are preferred in most cases.
You want the "Perfect Fly" Sulphur Emerger or the Emerger with Trailing Shuck to float flush in
The Sulphur duns usually hatch in the middle to late afternoons depending on the weather.
This usually occurs between 1:00 and 4:00 P. M., but in most cases later in the afternoon
Imitations of the emerger should be presented in the shallow, slower moving water adjacent to
the ripples and runs or in areas of the pools where the crawler nymphs are found.
The plain emerger is more imitative of the nymph than the dun and the emerger with the
trailing shuck is more imitative of the dun than the nymph. It's antron shuck imitates the
nymphal shuck before it is separated from the dun. Both take trout when they are hatching
and usually more readily than the dun imitation.
The emergers are not as easy to fish as the dun, however, because they float level with the
surface skim and are much more difficult to see on the water to detect the trout taking the fly.
The trailing shuck version is easier to see than the plain emerger, so if you're having trouble
seeing your plain emerger fly, switch to the trailing such version.
Copyright 2012 James Marsh
Perfect Fly Sulphur Nymph-Click image