Great Smoky Mountains Fishing Report 06/27/15
The weather reports just keep changing, meaning it seems they don't have much of a
clue as to what to expect. They reduced the Knoxville chances of rain down to 50%
early this morning but it's back up to 60% at the time I'm writing this at 7:30 AM.
Looking at the radar indicates to me that if it doesn't rain in Knoxville this morning,
the World is coming to an end. Meantime, the forecast for Gatlinburg stays at a 90%
chance of rain. I like that one the best.

Poor Little River just keeps missing out on the rain. Surely that will change today. I
think it is about to change sooner than that. It appears there is a big wall of rain a few
miles long about to move through the watershed this morning. It does appear that it is
losing some of its strength the closer it gets to the park. It came up a tad this morning
from rain that fell in the high headwaters just past midnight last night. It got down to
40 cfs.

Several areas of the park received plenty of rain yesterday. The Oconaluftee was
almost blown out. My guess is, based on the precipitation map, the Little Pigeon
River is on the way up.

I should also mention, as of right now, the forecast for later on this week doesn't look
bad. It is showing some decent chances of showers and thunderstorms.

Be careful fishing today. Don't get caught on the wrong side of the stream if water
suddenly rises. It's a little hard to believe, but that can happen. It can rain heavily in
the headwaters and the next thing you know, a wall of water is headed downstream.

Weather: (At Gatlinburg at about 1600 ft)  
Today, expect showers and thunderstorms, mainly before 5pm. The high will be near
77. Southwest wind will be from 5 to 10 mph. The chance of precipitation is 90%.

Sunday, will be sunny with a high near 79. Light southwest wind will become west at 5
to 10 mph in the morning.


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: 44 cfs at 1.17 ft.
(good wading conditions up to 250 cfs, and with extra caution up to 400 cfs
)

Oconaluftee River: Rate 479 cfs at 1.85 ft.
(good wading conditions up to 500 cfs, and with extra caution up to 700 cfs)

Cataloochee Creek: Rate 63 cfs at 2.37 ft (good wading conditions up to 125 with
extra caution up to 150 cfs)

Little Pigeon River: Yesterday afternoon it was low but not too low to fish in the
middle to higher elevations.

Hazel Creek and the other larger NC streams flowing into Fontana Lake:
I did bit get a report day before yesterday, but is okay shape to fish in the middle to
high elevations.

Current Recommended Streams:
I think you should select a section of water above the 2500 elevation range today. It
is going to be hot. If  you don't, at least fish only early or late in the day.

Little River is still very low. Unless this changes, the only part you should consider
fishing would be the East Prong a few miles above Elkmont. The West and Middle
prongs and their tributaries, including Lynn Camp Prong, are all two low in elevation
for the current conditions. Water temps are getting into the low seventies, way to hot.

The upper Middle Prong of Little Pigeon above Porters Creek, and the West Prong of
Little Pigeon River above the Chimneys Picnic area, would be okay choices. This
includes Walkers Camp Prong and Road Prong.

On the N.C. side of the park, you have more choices due to the fact it has received a
a lot more rain and the some of the streams are in good shape. I think anywhere
above 2000 feet in elevation would be okay. Oconaluftee River and Straight Fork
should be fine, if they don't get too high. The higher elevations of Hazel, Forney,
Noland, Deep Creek, and Big Creek would work.

Recommended Trout Flies:

Brown and White Belly Sculpins:
Hook Size 6

Cinnamon Caddis: (mostly Abrams but a few in all of the streams) 16/18
larva
pupa
adults

Green Sedges (Caddis): 14/16
larva (green rock worms)
pupa
adults

Sulphurs: 16/18
nymphs
emergers
duns
spinners

Slate Drakes: 10/12
nymphs
emergers

Golden Stoneflies: 10/12
nymphs
adults

Little Yellow Stoneflies: 16/14
nymphs
adults

Light Cahills: 16
nymphs
emergers
duns
spinners

Inch Worms: Hook size : 10/12/14

Green/Tan/Orange Hoppers: 10/12

Black Carpenter Ants: 16/18

Japanese Beetles: 16/14

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.

Strategy:
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 Slate Drake nymph. They are big swimming nymphs
that are easily caught and eaten by trout and are hatching. If you spot something
else hatching (coming off the water), it will most likely be Light Cahills or Sulphurs.
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 accidental.

When the Slate Drakes, Light Cahills or Sulphurs 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.

Golden Stoneflies and Little Yellow stoneflies are hatching, but of course, these
hatches take place during the evenings. Both species of stoneflies crawl out of the
water to hatch. Fishing a 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.

As mentioned above, Light Cahills and in some isolated area, Sulphurs,are hatching.
Look for the Light Cahills in the faster water areas. They will get caught up in the fast
water runs and riffles. Look for the Sulphurs in the slower water of the larger pools.

Tips for Beginners:
None

Tips for the Self Proclaimed Experts:
None

Whatever Hits Me:
Thank you for visiting our website

James Marsh
Copyright 2015 James Marsh
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