08/12/10
Insects and other foods the trout may be eating:
1.    Blue-winged Olives (See Below)
2.    Mahogany Duns
3.    Little Yellow Stoneflies - Summer Stones
4.    Slate Drakes
5.    Ants
6.    Inchworms
7.    Beetles
8.    Grasshoppers
9.    Hellgrammite
10.  Cranefly
11.  Sculpin, baitfish and small crayfish (Imitate with streamers)
12.  Cream Cahills

Current Conditions in the Smokies:
I don't really like giving information out about the weather simply because anyone
can get just as accurate of a forecast as I can about the weather in the Smokes,
from anywhere in the world, from many different sources, even your cell phone. I
have been working on a new DVD for weather for use in schools and another
version tailered to boating for the company I produce for in California for several
months. It has taken far longer than I anticipated.

I knew little about weather other than training in aviation weather years ago. It has
changed so much over the years it is mind boggling. Now that I have written that, I
realize that was a stupid statement. The weather has changed little to none. The
information available about the weather has changed drastically. I haven't had any
problem getting the help of numerous companies, organizations and individuals.
The information that NOAA's National Weather Service has on the web is amazing.
They have everything from schools to data beyond most people's imagination.

One amazing new gadget that is very helpful and useful is XM satellite weather
information and map overlays that are available on GPS equipment, both fixed and
handheld units. You can sit in the woods hunting or on a boat on any lake and get
accurate weather reports and watch weather radar screens showing weather
occurring at your location. I was doing a video production on one GPS unit recently
and using it in the Smokies only to see a heavy thunderstorm approaching during
the production. A few minutes later, it started to thunder and a few minutes after
that it rained heavily. All of that radar info was imposed over the map screen of my
handheld GPS. We were able to get everything back in our vehicles before the bad
weather arrived. That particular unit is made by Bushnell, the company that has
been making rifle scopes for many years.

I am far off the subject, something I am very good at. Back to the weather in the
Smokies, one word sums it up very well - hot. I lived on the coast of Florida for 25
years and I don't ever remember the weather being any hotter than it has been the
last month and a half here in the mountains. It is projected to be in the upper
nineties on into the weekend, but there is a least a decent chance of rain each day.
The problem is the isolated thunderstorms seem to downpour in one area, increase
the stream levels for about 12  hours and then things are back to normal. The water
evaporates and is absorbed so fast, the streams are back low in a very short time.
There's a 40 to 50 percent chance of rain today and through the weekend. Of
course, that means there's a good chance it won't rain anywhere you may be
wanting it to rain - like my front yard, for example.

The water temperatures at the Chimneys picnic area yesterday, was 67 degrees.
That is warmer water than I care to fish. I didn't get up to the head of Walker's Camp
Prong, but it probably wasn't very much cooler. You can hike into many small
streams much higher than that and catch brook trout but upper Walkers Camp
Prong that is the only place near a road that the water temperature is going to be
reasonable. My suggestion is that if you fish today, tomorrow or Sunday, either hike
into a high elevation stream or fish at least above the first tunnel on 441. Even
better, fish above Alum Cave Creek.  If there are some thunderstorms that catch the
Little Pigeon River watershed that high or higher, things could change and the
water could be in good shape downstream of Road Prong and Walker's Camp
Prong but for now that is the only place in the park you will find decent water temps
near a road on up in the day and they are marginal. You can also fish those areas
very early in the mornings or late in the day.

Fly Fishing DVD:
The sells of our DVD continues to be great. I'm amazed and even excited at the
number of new people that are taking up fly fishing. I'm amazed at the number of
new people taking it up in Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Rarely does a day
go by without we sell one to three 'Fly Fishing Great Smoky Mountains" DVD. Rarely
does a day go by without email or calls from someone just starting to fly fish. Of
course, sells of our 'Fly Fishing Yellowstone" program is at the top right now but it's
prime time in Yellowstone. It still amazes me that the two highest price DVD, $49.95
are the best sellers.

"Perfect Fly" New 2010 Product
"Perfect Fly" sells continue to increase at the time you would think they would be
slowing down but I guess that indicates our growth. I had my girls tie up several
dozen extra Japanese Beetles above our normal amount because it's one of our top
selling flies and it's terrestrial season. I still guessed wrong. We sold out three days
ago. More will arrive tomorrow, I hope. Not only are our flies selling world-wide like
hot cakes in Pigeon Forge, so are out fly boxes, leaders, tippet and indicators. We
shipped orders out yesterday to Australia and Germany. The order from Germany
was only for $38.70 and it showed free shipping. Somehow we didn't set Germany
up right because we charge to ship outside of the United States. I shipped them
Priority Mail at the cost of $13.95 anyway because otherwise they would be a very
long time getting them. It wasn't the customer's fault.

Normally, all fishing manufacturing companies, including fly fishing companies, come
out with their new product for the coming year in July of the year before. They
usually kick things off at the iCast show in Vegas in July. The fly fishing industry
kicks things off this year the first of September at their AFFTA show in Denver.
These shows are where the manufacturers show their new product to dealers. We
attended these shows three years ago and decided to drop them. We don't push
sells to dealers. We will sell to them but we don't call on them. We sell directly to
anglers mostly through the Internet and direct mail. Both of these shows are
declining from year to year because more and more manufactures are selling
product directly to the consumer like we choose to do. For that reason, we don't
release our new product until the end of the year just before the new product year.
Our new 2010 product will be released in late December.

We intend to have our first fly rod out by then. We intended to have it out this past
Spring. We intended to have it out the first of 2010. We just keep running into
problems to do with what anyone would call minor details, but in fly rods, minor
details are huge. It's the difference in top of the line quality and standard or even
low quality. We will be introducing a new 10 modulus fly rod. Not a new Series of fly
rods like all the other fly rod companies. We will introduce one new fly rod of one
line weight at a time. Why? Because there isn't any way to come out with a series,
or several fly rods with similar characteristics
without all but one of them lacking
in some respect
. It is done by the fly rod manufacturers only to keep down the
cost of production and the cost of marketing and advertising.

You can pay for an add in a magazine or a brochure on a "Series" of fly rods much
cheaper than you can one fly rod. We do not want to compromise the quality of our
fly rods using this approach. We don't care what the standard way of the fly rod
business is. They are all struggling or going out of business anyway. The fishing
industry is just too small to add profits and overhead of factory reps, distributors
and dealers to the profits and overhead of the manufacturer. This is why many fly
shops have failed. It wasn't their fault, it is the industry.

We will have several new flies that imitate various fish foods that we currently do not
have. We have or are currently designing imitations of a Cricket, Leaf hopper,
Spruce Moth, Apple Caddis, Long-horn Sedge, Adult Dragon Fly, Black Nose Dace,
Adult Damsel Fly, Mysis Shrimp and a complete new Salmon and Steelhead Series
of flies.

We will also have several new leaders designed for specific species or applications.
All of these new products and more, will be available the first of 2011. Thank you for
your continued support.

Top Tips on the Basics: Will be continued tomorrow

Copyright 2010 James Marsh