I traveled from Townsend to Gatlinburg yesterday in the park along the Little River
until it turns away from the road about a mile from Elkmont. I stopped at several
points along the river to check for hatches. I didn't take samples, just observed the
water and banks. The only thing that was hatching from around 12:00 PM to 2:00
PM was the Tiny Chimmara caddisflies. The adult flies are crawling around on most
of the rocks mating. These little caddis crawl out of the water when they hatch and
crawl back down the rocks and banks to deposit their eggs on the bottom. I have
not found them worth imitating, but as I mentioned before, I may be not doing
something right. I guess I need an imitation that crawls up and down the rocks. Ha.
(Financial tip of the day:) Instead of buying a New York Times paper this coming
Sunday, buy a share of their stock in the company. It is cheaper than the paper.
Flies Needed Now for Fishing the Smokies
Blue Quills - Part 2
Insects and other food the trout may be eating:
1. Blue-winged Olives (Baetis)
2. Blue Quills
3. Quill Gordons
4. Little Black Caddis
5. Winter Stoneflies
Blue Quill Emergers:
The little Blue Quill mayfly emerges in calm water areas such as pockets, shallow
water along the banks, the shallow ends of pools and anywhere there is slow to
moderate water that is near the fast water. They emerge in the surface skim. The
wings pop out of the wing pad of the nymph. It sheds it shuck, flutters a time or two
on the surface and flies away as quickly as its wings can dry. In cold water they
sometimes hatch in, this takes several seconds. During this transformation, the
emerging nymphs are totally helpless. Trout can eat them with ease.
If the nymph is emerging in real shallow water, you will occasionally see a flash of a
trout as it shoots through the water to eat the emergers. Getting your fly in the right
place and getting a drag free drift is usually difficult. You don't want to place it in the
fast water areas. You want to place it in the calm areas as described above. When
you do, the fast water will usually quickly move your fly line and drag the fly out of
the area you want it in. It is difficult to mend the line enough to stop this sometimes.
If you must make a long cast, it is almost impossible to prevent this from occurring.
If you have no cover to conceal your presence, getting close to these areas without
spooking the trout isn't easy. The best way we have found to fish this hatch, is to
slip up behind boulders and cast to the calm pockets and areas where these
mayflies hatch. That way you can make a shorter cast and keep your fly line off the
water. It is best to place the fly as close to the current seams as possible but on the
slow side of the water, not the fast side of the seam.
We have two versions of the emergers - the CDC emerger that hangs in the
surface skim with its tail down and the trailing shuck version that floats level in the
surface skim. Either one will work. The trailing shuck version is easier to see
because you can apply floatant to it. You shouldn't apply floatant to the non-trailing
shuck version. It should float with the CDC level with the surface.
The actual colors of these images is off due to the different studio lighting used.
The biot on the upper fly is about the same color as the lower one and its trailing
shuck is tan, not yellow. I will have to re-shoot the image to correct the colors.
A good place to find these is very near the banks. By wading out in the stream you
can cast to the calm pockets near the banks. Again, this isn't easy if there is fast
water near the calm areas that your fly line must land in. You can make some quick
mends to prevent dragging the fly, but it requires well placed cast and several,
quick mends in the line.
Copyright 2009 James Marsh
Perfect Fly Trailing Shuck Version "Emerger TS" - Hook Size 18
Perfect Fly "Emerger" - Hook Size 18