Great Smoky Mountains Fishing Report 01/24/15
Question? From a fishing standpoint in the steams of the park, what is worse than
cold water? Answer! Cold, high water. So far, the North Carolina side of the park is
getting the most rain.
Today, we can expect rain and snow, mainly before 10am. The high will be near 40.
West wind will be from 5 to 10 mph. The chance of precipitation is 90%. Total daytime
snow accumulation of less than a half inch is possible. Tonights low will be around 29.
Sunday, there is a 30 percent chance of rain, mainly after 5pm. It will be mostly
sunny, with a high near 51. Southwest wind will range from 5 to 10 mph.
Smoky Mountain Stream Conditions:
The streams with links that have nearby USGS Station Real-time stream data: Click
to links to see updates:
Little River: Rate 352 cfs at 2.30 ft..
(good wading conditions up to 250 cfs, and with extra caution up to 400 cfs)
Oconaluftee River: Rate 859 cfs at 2.40 ft.
(good wading conditions up to 500 cfs, and with extra caution up to 700 cfs)
Cataloochee Creek: Rate 143 cfs at 2.74 ft (This gauge is also messed up due to
(good wading conditions up to 125 with extra caution up to 150 cfs)
Little Pigeon River doesn't have a station nearby. It was about normal yesterday
afternoon but my guess is it is rising rather fast.
Hazel Creek and the other larger NC streams flowing into Fontana Lake. My guess
is they are most likely high.
Current Recommended Streams: None
Recommended Trout Flies:
1. Blue-winged Olives:
Hook Size 20/18
2. Brown and White Belly Sculpins:
Hook Size 6
3. Cream Midges: 20/22
4. Winter Stoneflies: 16/18
Recommended Fishing Strategy:
Keep in mind, the strategies I am recommending is for the maximum odds
of catching numbers of fish. Many prefer or favor a dry fly and by all means there
isn't anything wrong with that. It's just a fact that if nothing is hatching at the time, it
reduces your odds of success. You can still probably hook some trout, just not as
many as if you fish subsurface. Of course, this is also based on using good
techniques and the right flies. Some guys don't know how to fish below the surface.
Until I spotted something hatching, assuming I was fishing a low to mid elevation
stream, I would fish a size 18 Blue-winged Olive nymph. Many of the species of
mayflies called Blue-winged Olives are bi-brooded, meaning they hatch twice a year.
They are swimming nymphs that dart around in short spurts and hide wherever they
can. They don't stay wedged up under the rocks like most of the other mayfly
nymphs, the majority of which are clingers. Winter stoneflies should begin crawling
out of the water to hatch within the next few days.
If the water is below 43 degrees, I would switch to a Cream Midge larva and Cream
Midge Pupa tandem rig, with the larva the bottom fly and the pupa above it.
If you spot something hatching, it will most likely be Cream Midges or small
Blue-winged Olives. Switch to the adult Cream Midge, if it is midges hatching, or the
BWO Dun or emerger, if it is the BWOs.
Tips for Beginners:
Learn to imitate the most plentiful and available insects and other foods at the time
you are fishing, or continue to use trial and error methods and forever be a mediocre
Tips for the Self Proclaimed Experts:
Whatever Hits Me:
Copyright 2015 James Marsh
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