Great Smoky Mountains Fishing Report 02/02/15
Early this morning, it was warm, in the forties, but at 8:30 AM, the current time, the
temperature is falling fast. The wind has blown hard all night long and at times the
rain has been heavy enough to wake me up. It looks like the streams are all blown
out but starting to fall. About the only good news, is our Giant Redhead
Woodpeckers (Pleated Woodpeckers) are back. We saw them several times
yesterday afternoon. The are beautiful birds.

The forecast is saying that rain showers are likely before 1pm, then a chance of
snow showers but the radar is showing snow everywhere already this morning. . It will
be cloudy with a temperature falling to around 33 by 5pm. Northwest wind will be
around 15 mph, with gusts as high as 35 mph but I will assure you that the wind in
Pigeon Forge has hit a higher speed than that. The chance of precipitation is 60%. A
total daytime snow accumulation of less than a half inch possible. Tonight's low will
be around 18.

Tuesday will be sunny with a high near 47. The wind will be from the west around 5
mph in the afternoon.

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 1100 cfs at 3.55 ft.
(good wading conditions up to 250 cfs, and with extra caution up to 400 cfs)

Oconaluftee River: Rate 1900 cfs at 3.44 ft.
(good wading conditions up to 500 cfs, and with extra caution up to 700 cfs)

Cataloochee Creek: Rate 381 cfs at 3.45 ft (This gauge is also messed up due to
ice) (good wading conditions up to 125 with extra caution up to 150 cfs)

Little Pigeon River doesn't have a station nearby. According to the rain precip
map, I'm sure it is blown out.

Hazel Creek and the other larger NC streams flowing into Fontana Lake. According
to the rain precip map, is it is blown out.

Current Recommended Streams: None today

Recommended Trout Flies:
1. Blue-winged Olives:
Hook Size 20/18
nymphs
emergers
duns
spinners

2. Brown and White Belly Sculpins:
Hook Size 6

3. Cream Midges: 20/22
larva
pupa
adults

4. Winter Stoneflies: 16/18
nymphs
adults

5.
Little Brown Stoneflies: 14
nymphs
adults

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.
Strategy:
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 and Little Brown stoneflies will start very soon, if not already.

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, Winter stoneflies
or small Blue-winged Olives. Switch to the adult Cream Midge, if it is midges
hatching, Winter stonefly, 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
angler.

Tips for the Self Proclaimed Experts:
None

Whatever Hits Me:
Thank you

James Marsh
Copyright 2015 James Marsh
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