Great Smoky Mountains Fishing Report 05/09/15
The North Carolina side of the park managed to get some rain yesterday, and/or last
night. Both the Cataloochee and Oconaluftee river USGS stations show a rise in the
levels. I don't see any change in the levels on the Tennessee side of the park.
Those of you that want to blame the lower water levels with your less than desired
success, can fish the N.C. side of the park today, and see if that helps. By the first of
next week, it looks like the weather pattern is going to be back closer to normal than
it has for the past few days.
Weather: (At Gatlinburg at about 1600 ft)
Today, there is a 20 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms after 2pm. It will
be mostly sunny with a high near 85. Calm wind will change to the north around 5
mph in the afternoon. Tonight, there is a 20 percent chance of showers and
thunderstorms before midnight. The low will be around 61.
Sunday, there is a 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. It will be partly
sunny with a high near 82. South wind will be around 5 mph becoming northwest in
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: 162 cfs at 1.73 ft.
(good wading conditions up to 250 cfs, and with extra caution up to 400 cfs)
Oconaluftee River: Rate 587 cfs at 2.03 ft.
(good wading conditions up to 500 cfs, and with extra caution up to 700 cfs)
Cataloochee Creek: Rate 111 cfs at 2.61 ft (good wading conditions up to 125 with
extra caution up to 150 cfs)
Little Pigeon River doesn't have a station nearby but it is in good shape.
Hazel Creek and the other larger NC streams flowing into Fontana Lake:
Customers reported recently that Hazel Creek is in great shape.
Current Recommended Streams: All the streams are okay.
Recommended Trout Flies:
Hook Size 20/18
Blue Quills: 18
American March Browns: 10/12
Little Black Caddis: 18
Brown and White Belly Sculpins:
Hook Size 6
Eastern Green Drakes: 4/6 (Abrams Creek Only)
Cinnamon Caddis: (mostly Abrams but a few in all of the streams) 16/18
Green Caddis: 14/16
larva (green rock worms)
Giant Black Stoneflies: 4/6
Eastern Pale Evening Duns: 14 (called sulphurs by some)
Little Yellow Stoneflies: 16/14
Light Cahills: 16
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.
If you fished the day or two before and know where something is hatching, fish the
nymph or larva stage of it. If you haven't fished the day or two before, until I spotted
something hatching, I would fish a size 18 Blue-winged Olive Nymph. They are little
swimming nymphs that are easily caught and eaten by trout and are currently
hatching. If you spot something hatching (coming off the water) that is relatively
small, it will most likely be Blue Quills, Blue-winged Olives, Ligh Cahills or Little Black
Caddis. It it is relatively large, it will be a Eastern Pale Evening Dun or American
March Brown. Change to the appropriate emerger, dun or adult imitations of the
When March Browns or Eastern Pale Evening Duns are hatching, there will be a
spinner fall late in the day. Often, you can catch more trout fishing the spinner fall
quicker than you can during the hatch. Change to the spinner imitation of the mayfly.
Giant Black Stoneflies should begin to hatch any day now. Fishing a Giant Black
Stonefly nymph very late in the afternoon near sunset may produce a very large trout
for you. Little Yellow Stoneflies are beginning to hatch. The nymphs are coming out
from under their hiding places to fully develop their wing pads and crawling out on
the rocks and banks to hatch. Fishing a nymph imitation of them late in the day is a
good strategy in areas you know they have started to hatch..Eastern Pale Evening
Duns, often called Sulphurs but not true Sulphurs (which will hatch later on), are
starting to hatch in some areas. These are not any and everywhere, but some of the
larger pools. Where they do exist, they can be important. By the way, these are not
Pale Evening Duns, which are a western species. Light Cahill are hatching. Look for
them to get caught up in the fast water runs and riffles. I should have put these in the
list about 2 weeks ago. I've been behind with my work and making some mistakes I
shouldn't have made.
Tips for Beginners:
Tips for the Self Proclaimed Experts:
Whatever Hits Me:
Copyright 2015 James Marsh
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