12/21/08

Update on Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Several days ago, I decided that if I would predict that the water table in Great
Smoky Mountains would never return to normal that it would do exactly opposite of
my prediction and rain. It rained.  

I did notice that no one predicted what was about to happen. Oh sure, the weather
guys and gals predicted it a week ahead correctly in most cases (they can look at
the weather radar map and see what is coming) but no one predicted what
happened was going to happen in terms of the overall amount of water that was
about to fall from the skies. I must admit that I am pleasantly surprised. The water
table is probably well on its way to returning to normal. The rainfall amounts for this
month are about three times normal. It has been the right type of rain, meaning
slow, long periods of drizzling rain that almost all goes underground. In spite of over
six inches of rain this month, I have not noticed any of the streams in the Smokies
that were muddy or even heavily stained. For the most part they have been high
and clear the last several days. I haven't taken into account what rain fell yesterday
afternoon and last night. There has been much more and heavy at times.

The predictions are that the weather will return to far past our normal winter
weather tonight. When it all settles down in a few days, it will make the fishing a little
tougher than normal. That just adds to the challenge and satisfaction you get when
you do have a good day. It won't be long before the weather will get warm. Spring
will come before we know it, trees will bud and the fish will become more active.
Everyone will have to come up with a set of entirely different excuses for their lack
of success.

Let me help. The water is getting warmer but it isn't quite warm enough yet. The
bugs haven't come off yet but they will any day. I saw a few Quill Gordons but the
trout were not looking up. (I guess they went blind since they are always looking up,
down and around without even moving their eyes). There were some bad
thunderstorms approaching and I had to quit early in the day. The water was too
high and stained. I fished behind someone all day and didn't realize it until darkness
set in.

Now those excuses are only for those guys who get asked about their day of
fishing. It is best to do what most anglers do and just go home and keep their mouth
shut when conditions are quote "perfect" and they still don't catch many trout.  

Tomorrow: Headwaters of the South Holston River, VA

Copyright 2008 James Marsh