Great Smoky Mountains Fishing Report 08/20/15
Yesterday morning, just after daylight, I couldn't wait to go outside and breath the
clean, fresh air after what seemed like a good rain during the night. I just stood there,
looking off our front porch at what I call my green field across the road. I kelp hearing
a strange noise right under me. Our porch is about eight feet above the ground and I
never took my eyes off the green field to look down directly below me. Then, I heard
another strange noise under me and finally looked straight down. I was about eight
feet from a wild turkey pecking at something in the shrubbery along the front of the
house. I didn't move, rather just continued to watch the hen as she continued to peck
at and eat something. I'm guessing as much as 5 to 10 minutes passed as I watched
her leave the shrubbery and start walking and pecking across the front yard. It was
nothing short of wonderful. Finally, I decided to let her have the front yard, without
me spooking her, so I stepped backwards to the front door, went inside and quietly
pushed the door almost shut. I didn't fully close it when I walked out on the porch, or I
would have probably spooked her.
This morning, I did the same thing, hoping to catch something in the green field or
yard, but I didn't. It was so cool and wet that I just stood there breathing in the fresh
air and thinking how lucky I am.
I guess we could get too much rain before the next day or two is over, but even if we
do, I just don't see how things could be going any better. The opportunities to catch
trout in the park have to be as good as they can get in the month of August.
By the way, Little River didn't get passed over last night. It got some badly needed
rain and is in good shape this morning. It can use a lot more. Oconaluftee is a little
high and still rising. Looking at the precipitation map, it appear that all the streams in
the park should be in good shape.
Weather: (At Gatlinburg at about 1600 ft)
As I usually do on Thursdays, I will provide the forecast through Sunday, so anyone
considering heading to the Smokies from a good distance away can see what is in
store for them, weather wise. Today, showers and thunderstorms are likely, mainly
before 5pm, then showers likely and possibly a thunderstorm after 5pm. It will be
cloudy, with a high near 81. West wind will be around 5 mph. The chance of
precipitation is 70%.
Friday, there is a slight chance of showers before 9am, then a chance of showers
and thunderstorms after 3pm. It will be partly sunny with a high near 81. Northeast
wind will be around 5 mph becoming calm in the morning. The chance of precipitation
Saturday, there's a 20 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms after 3pm. It
will be mostly sunny with a high near 84. Winds will be calm.
Sunday, there's a 20 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms after 9am. It will
be mostly sunny with a high near 84.
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: 98 cfs at 1.47 ft.
(good wading conditions up to 250 cfs, and with extra caution up to 400 cfs)
Oconaluftee River: Rate 436 cfs at 1.79 ft.
(good wading conditions up to 500 cfs, and with extra caution up to 700 cfs)
Cataloochee Creek: Rate 46 cfs at 2.26 ft (good wading conditions up to 125 with
extra caution up to 150 cfs)
Little Pigeon River: Not sure at this time
Hazel Creek and the other larger NC streams flowing into Fontana Lake:
They are all probably in good shape
Current Recommended Streams:
Any of the streams above about the 2000 foot elevation.
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
Little Yellow Stoneflies: 14
Little Green Stoneflies: 16
Light Cahills: 14/16
Cream Cahills: 14/16
Mahogany Duns: 18
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 the Slate Drake nymph. They are big swimming
nymphs that are easily caught and eaten by trout and are still hatching. If you spot
something else hatching (coming off the water), it will most likely be Light or Cream
Cahills. Change to the appropriate emerger, dun or adult imitations of the insect.
When the Slate Drakes, Light or Cream Cahills 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.
Little Yellow and Little Green 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 Little Green 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.
Cream Cahills are hatching. Look for them in the faster water areas. They will get
caught up in the fast water runs and riffles. Mahogany Duns should start hatching
Tips for Beginners:
Tips for the Self Proclaimed Experts:
Whatever Hits Me:
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