09/01/10
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.    Needle Stoneflies
6.    Little Yellow Quills
7.    Ants
8.    Inchworms
9.    Beetles
10.  Grasshoppers
11.  Hellgrammite
12.  Craneflies
13.  Sculpin, baitfish and small crayfish (Imitate with streamers)


Back To The Basics - Hatch Charts
Hatches are usually described by hatch charts for a particular stream. The problem
is most of them have flies mixed in with the insects. A typical hatch chart might have
something like Blue-winged Olives in May, Little Brown stoneflies in June and
Beadhead Copper Johns in August. I haven't seen any of the later hatching. Also,
most all hatch charts (
except our own Perfect Fly hatch charts) usually  just list
caddisflies as one insect. Some get real advanced and list brown, pink and yellow
caddisflies, whatever those are. Others may have a huge number of errors in them.
In other words, many and maybe even most hatch charts are near worthless, insofar
as determining what insects are in a stream and the approximate times they will
hatch.

Our "Perfect Fly" hatch charts will undergo many additions within the next few days.
We have the information for about 100 more steams but we haven't got the info in
the form of a hatch charts yet. Please note that some hatch charts do not take
fishing seasons or any regulations into consideration because they are subject to
change from year to year, state to state, and even stream to stream. Generally, the
charts indicate activity that starts prior to and extends beyond local fishing seasons.
In some cases hatches are shown for the entire year, usually where fishing is
permitted year-round. The hatch charts do not represent fishing seasons.

W want to emphasize that on any given stream there may be hundreds of different
species of aquatic insects that exist in very small quantity. Some species may occur
only in certain isolated areas of the stream. We list what we believe are the most
prevalent and important hatches that anglers should be concerned with. The
species we list are usually not concentrated throughout the entire stream, only in
the portions of the stream that offer the proper habitat. For example, if a certain
stonefly hatch is shown on a river that is thirty miles long, don’t expect to find them
at the lower end of the river in pools of slow moving water unsuitable for stoneflies.
Also, you should be aware that hatches could progress upstream from day to day,
especially on those steams with steep declinations, so they may occur at different
sections of water from day to day.    

Remember that seasonal weather conditions can change the dates that hatches
actually occur from the predicted time periods the charts indicate. An unusually cold
year may delay a hatch a week or two, in some cases, even longer.
However, the
sequence in which the different species hatch will generally occur in the
same order.

Prior to fishing any given stream, you should make a list of the insects and other
trout foods shown on the hatch guides along with the recommended flies that imitate
them for the time period you intend to fish. Make some allowances for the indicated
time period, just in case. In other words, if a certain insect is shown to start hatching
on March 1 and you are fishing February
26th, list it.

Don't forget that the charts show the predicted “hatch” dates. Normally, the nymph
or larvae, and pupa stages of the insects are available for trout to eat well in
advance to those dates. I
n fact, in many cases, depending on the particular  
species, the insects are much more important to the angler prior to the
hatch than they are after the hatch occurs.

Tomorrow, i will get into how you go about determining what's the most available
and easiest to acquire food for the trout at any one time in the streams of Great
Smoky Mountains National Park. You may be surprised at just how easy it is to know
what you are doing versus just using trial and error strategies.  

Mahogany Duns:
Sorry for the delay in finishing the Mahogany Duns section. I discovered some
errors in our "Perfect Fly" Mahogany Dun page and wanted to correct the errors
prior to finishing them. I will get back to them within the next day or two.
Copyright 2010 James Marsh