03/21/10
Insects and other foods the trout may be eating:
1.   Blue-winged Olives
2.   Little Black Winter Stoneflies
3.   Quill Gordon Mayflies
4.   Blue Quill Mayflies
5.   Little Brown Stoneflies
6.   Little Black Caddis (American Grannoms)
7.   Sculpin, baitfish and small crayfish (Imitate with streamers)
8.   Midges

Fly Fishing Tailwaters:
I know many of you fish the local tailwaters around Great Smoky Mountains National
Park because I get a lot of email and questions asking about other destinations.
There are those guys that come to spend a few days or a week and want some
options on where to fish other than the streams in the park. Although many of you
are very familiar with tailwaters, there are plenty of those that are not. Some are
actually very experienced anglers at catching trout on the fly. Just this past week, I
had three separate email request asking that specific question. All three were from
northern states - Michigan, Ohio and Pennsylvania. In many parts of the country,
there are not a lot of tailwaters, or certainly not near as many as we have in the
South. For example, although Pennsylvania has as many or more trout streams as
any state in the nation, few of them are tailwaters. The specific questions were to do
with which ones I suggested. I get very reluctant to answer or reply in a positive
manner when it comes to fishing tailwaters.

I have a hate - love relationship with tailwaters I guess. I love them when the
discharges are desirable and hate them when they aren't. Now as anyone that has
ever fished a tailwater knows, you should always get a schedule on the discharges
and current stream conditions before going. We know they not only can change by
the minute, the flows can be very different at different locations on the stream. To
someone not familiar with tailwaters, this can be a confusing mess to deal with. My
answer always has a bunch of "ifs" which anyone asking for advice hates to hear.
Well, that is my excuse for writing about tailwaters during the next few days.