Great Smoky Mountains Fishing Report 07/06/15
Yesterday, I rose from the bed early as usual, but came to a quick decision that I
needed to take some time off. For the first time since living in Pigeon Forge, I didn't
go to the fireworks display the night of the 4th, but it didn't make much difference. It
seemed like the display was being launched from our front yard. Actually, the launch
site is closer to the house than most viewpoints along the strip. Angie and her mother
fought the traffic to see the display and some of the concert, while I baby sat Biddie,
our child Cocker Spaniel. She doesn't understand what it is all about and isn't very
fond of the loud noise. It doesn't stop when the official fireworks display ends. That
just kicks things off for the individual firework shows the visitors put on. I'm blaming
being tired on the fireworks, but in reality, I have worked over twelve hours a day,
seven days a week for the last two months.
We will be making some big changes at Perfect Fly as soon as things lighten up a
little this Fall. July is always our busiest month. We will be adding a lot of new product
and for certain, much needed additional help. We are looking at setting up a central
distribution center and warehouse type of operation similar to some other larger
Now, on to the Smokies, notice the stream levels are currently all in good shape for
the hot month of July. The park received a good amount of rain recently, and I might
add, just in time. A day or two ago, they were forecasting clear skies for most of this
coming week. They have changed it to a 20 to 30 percent chance of rain each day
for the next week. I like the later forecast much better.
I'm not changing the recommended fly list below today, but it will be changing very
soon. The Golden stoneflies and Sulphurs are about gone. I list two species of
caddisflies but actually, there are three other species hatching (Little Browns, Little
Sisters,and short-horned sedges) right now. They exist only in isolated areas and low
numbers. The two listed are not very plentiful except in Abrams.
The Slate Drakes will continue to hatch but will be sparse hatches until mid August
when they pick back up again. They are not bi-brooded, but do have a rather long
The Light Cahills will be declining but replaced by Cream Cahills. Little Yellow Quills
will begin to hatch in the high elevations soon. So will the Little Needle stoneflies. The
Little Yellow Stones, called Yellow Sallies, will be mostly replaced by Little Greens,
but reappear later on in late Summer. I'm pointing these upcoming changes out, just
to let you know changes do take place in the mid summer.
Weather: (At Gatlinburg at about 1600 ft)
Today, there is a slight chance of showers with thunderstorms also possible after
noon. It will be partly sunny with a high near 83. Southwest wind will be from 5 to 10
mph becoming west later in the morning. The chance of precipitation is 20%.
Tuesday, there's a 30 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms, mainly after
11am. It will be partly sunny with a high near 86. Southwest wind will range from 5 to
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:307 cfs at 2.16 ft.
(good wading conditions up to 250 cfs, and with extra caution up to 400 cfs)
Oconaluftee River: Rate 628 cfs at 2.09 ft.
(good wading conditions up to 500 cfs, and with extra caution up to 700 cfs)
Cataloochee Creek: Rate 72 cfs at 2.42 ft (good wading conditions up to 125 with
extra caution up to 150 cfs)
Little Pigeon River: Yesterday it was in great shape and appeared to be about a
Hazel Creek and the other larger NC streams flowing into Fontana Lake:
According to customers, the streams are high, but not too high to wade and fish in
Current Recommended Streams:
You can fish just about anywhere you want to today, but I would stick to the mid to
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
Green Sedges (Caddis): 14/16
larva (green rock worms)
Slate Drakes: 10/12
Golden Stoneflies: 10/12
Little Yellow Stoneflies: 16/14
Light Cahills: 16
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.
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
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:
Tips for the Self Proclaimed Experts:
Whatever Hits Me:
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