Great Smoky Mountains Fishing Report - 12/28/13
The stream levels and weather should be great for today. Tomorrow is questionable,
depending on the amount of rain we get late today, tonight and tomorrow.
Smoky Mountain Weather:
There is only a slight change of showers today. It will rain tonight and tomorrow for
sure. Today and tomorrow's high temperature at Gatlinburg will go into the low fifties.
Lows tonight and tomorrow night will be in the mid thirties. NWS Forecast
Smoky Mountain Stream Conditions:
The streams with links have nearby USGS Station Real-time stream data:
Little River: Rate 406 cfs at 2.53 ft.
(good wading conditions up to 250 cfs, and with extra caution up to 400cfs)
Oconaluftee River: Rate 875 cfs at 2.37 ft.
(good wading conditions up to 500 cfs, and with extra caution up to 700 cfs)
Cataloochee Creek: Rate 205 cfs at 2.99 ft
(good wading conditions up to 125 cfs, and with extra caution up to 150 cfs)
Little Pigeon River doesn't have a station nearby but is back down to where it can
be waded with caution
Hazel Creek and the other larger NC streams flowing into Cherokee Lake are
probably back down to the point they can be waded
Current Recommended Streams
Fishing conditions have improved greatly as of this Saturday morning. If you have the
opportunity, give it a try.
You can still fish the smaller streams if you want easy wading conditions but I don't
see any reason the larger, lower elevation streams cannot be fished provided you
exercise caution. The water will be slightly warmer in the lower elevations.
Recommended Trout Flies:
1. Blue-winged Olives:
Hook Size 20
nymphs (this would be the main fly)
2. Midges: Cream
Hook Size 20/22
3. Sculpins: Especially good in off color, high water & early/late in the day
Hook Size 6
White Belly Sculpin
4. Winter Stoneflies: 18/16
Recommended Fishing Strategy:
Fish the BWO nymph. In terms of numbers, these little swimming and crawler nymphs
are still the most plentiful larvae available for the trout to eat other than midges. Most
likely anything hatching would be midges. You could also fish a tandem rig with the
Cream midge pupa on top and larva on the bottom.
The winter stoneflies should start hatching any day if not already. The nymph (fished
late in the day) is by far the most important stage to match. If you see any adults
laying eggs, swap to an adult imitation.
Tips for Beginners:
Be careful wading the larger streams. Keep the nymph flies on the bottom in the
deepest holes and use a strike indicator.
Tips for the Self Proclaimed Experts:
Great conditions for high sticking
Whatever Hits Me - Holiday Crowds
Angie and I have lived in a resort town ever since we have been married or for the
last 14 years. I lived in a resort town for thirty years before that. For Angie and I, It
was Panama City Beach, then Gatlinburg and for the last five years, Pigeon Forge.
We are certainly use to traffic and crowds of tourist.
In Pigeon Forge, we know our way around the back streets and are rarely bothered
by traffic. That same thing was true of Panama City Beach at one time but after
building over twenty high rise condos on the beach front road, the same road that
has been there for years that cannot be widened due to high rise building on both
sides of it, became a huge mess. We could walk six blocks to the local Walmart three
times as fast as we could drive there. Getting to the marina, where I went about every
day, changed from taking about twenty minutes to taking anywhere from forty-five
minutes to an hour.
Although we live within a mile and a half of the Pigeon Forge City hall, where we live
is completely surrounded by woods. We see several bears a year in our yard
along with every other animal and bird that lives in the park except elk. That is neat.
We feel like we have the best of two different kinds of living extremes.
Copyright 2013 James Marsh
More Options For Selecting Flies:
1. Email us with the dates you will be
fishing the park and we will send
you a list of our fly suggestions.
Please allow up to 24 hours for a
2. Call us at 800-594-4726 and we
will help you decide which flies you
3. Call or email us with a budget for
flies and we will select them and get
them to you in time for your trip.
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