Great Smoky Mountains Fishing Report 06/09/15
For a change, I finally have some very good news. All the streams in the park got
badly needed rain late yesterday afternoon and last night. Little River finally got its
fair share of rain and the streams are up in good shape but probably stained. That
should clear up fast and fishing opportunities should be back normal.
My buddy Harvey from North Carolina, visiting Gatlinburg today, reported he stopped
by Cosby Creek yesterday afternoon to find it high and off color. He also stopped at
the Middle Prong of Little Pigeon (Greenbrier) to find it high but relatively clear.
Weather: (At Gatlinburg at about 1600 ft)
Today, there is a chance of showers with thunderstorms also possible after 5pm. It
will be cloudy, then gradually becoming mostly sunny with a high near 84. Northwest
wind will be around 5 mph. The chance of precipitation is 40%.
Wednesday, there's a 20 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms after 2pm. It
will be mostly sunny with a high near 85.
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: 173 cfs at 1.77 ft.
(good wading conditions up to 250 cfs, and with extra caution up to 400 cfs)
Oconaluftee River: Rate 614 cfs at 2.07 ft.
(good wading conditions up to 500 cfs, and with extra caution up to 700 cfs)
Cataloochee Creek: Rate 104 cfs at 2.58 ft (good wading conditions up to 125 with
extra caution up to 150 cfs)
Little Pigeon River doesn't have a station nearby but as late yesterday afternoon, it
was high and rising.
Hazel Creek and the other larger NC streams flowing into Fontana Lake:
According to the precipitation map, I expect they are high and off color this morning.
Current Recommended Streams: I think all the streams will be falling out fast
due to the low water table. Some will be high and off color this morning. For the first
time in a long time, I think you will be better off fishing streams on the Tennessee
side of the park. Some N.C. streams will be too high to wade today. The small
streams in the high elevations will be easier to fish today.
Recommended Trout Flies:
Hook Size 20/18
American March Browns:
Hook Size: 10/12
Brown and White Belly Sculpins:
Hook Size 6
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)
Slate Drakes: 10/12
Golden Stoneflies: 10/12
Little Yellow Stoneflies: 16/14
Light Cahills: 16
Inch Worms: Hook size : 10/12/14
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 still hatching. If
you spot something else hatching (coming off the water) that is relatively small, it will
most likely be Light Cahills. It it is relatively large, it will probably be an Eastern Pale
Evening Dun or American March Brown. Change to the appropriate emerger, dun or
adult imitations of the insect. Slate Drakes are starting to hatch but remember, they
hatch out of the water. Only the spinners get on the water unless it is purely
When March Browns, Slate Drakes, Light Cahills 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, Golden Stoneflies and Little Yellow stoneflies are hatching,
but of course, this takes place during the evenings. Fishing a Giant Black Stonefly
nymph, Golden Stonefly nymph or Little Yellow Stonefly nymph very late in the
afternoon near sunset should produce. If you see the stoneflies depositing their eggs
on the surface of the water, switch to the adult imitation of the stonefly.
Eastern Pale Evening Duns, often called Sulphurs but not true Sulphurs are still
hatching in some areas. True Sulphurs are beginning to hatch. These are not any
and everywhere, but some of the larger pools.
As mentioned above, Light Cahills are hatching. Look for them in the faster water
areas. They will get caught up in the fast water runs and riffles.
Tips for Beginners:
Tips for the Self Proclaimed Experts:
Whatever Hits Me:
Copyright 2015 James Marsh
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