Great Smoky Mountains Fishing Report 07/12/15
We received some needed rain yesterday, and some of the streams are on the way
up this early morning. According to the precipitation map, the Little River watershed
received over an inch with part of it over an inch and a half. Some of the streams
draining into the lakes on the N. C. side of the park should be on the way up. It looks
like we have a decent chance of rain through the first part of next week. I think we
can expect to continue to have good stream levels at least for the next week or two.
Remember, that good water levels also help keep the water cool. Very low levels and
high air temperatures are a bad combination for any freestone stream.
Weather: (At Gatlinburg at about 1600 ft)
Today, expect showers and thunderstorms but mainly after 5pm. The high will be
near 87. The chance of precipitation is 60%.
Monday, there is a 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. It will be partly
sunny with a high near 87.
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: 212 cfs at 1.90 ft.
(good wading conditions up to 250 cfs, and with extra caution up to 400 cfs)
Oconaluftee River: Rate 372 cfs at 1.67 ft.
(good wading conditions up to 500 cfs, and with extra caution up to 700 cfs)
Cataloochee Creek: Rate 50 cfs at 2.29 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 a little low
early yesterday morning.
Hazel Creek and the other larger NC streams flowing into Fontana Lake:
According to customers, the streams are a little low but my guess is they are coming
up this morning.
Current Recommended Streams:
You can fish just about anywhere you want to today, but I would stick to the mid to
higher elevations. The streams in the lower elevations are too warm to fish.
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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