Insects and other foods the trout
should be eating:
1. BWOs (Little BWOs)
3. Little Winter Stoneflies
Most available/ Other types of food:
4. Sculpin, Minnows (Streamers)
Getting Started - Where and When To Fish
From our Perfect Fly website as well as this site, I get frequent questions from those wanting to get started fly
fishing the Smokies. The typical email usually says something to the effect that "we are coming to the
Smokies such and such date and would like to fish for trout". We will be staying at such and such, etc. Would
you please give us some tips on where to fish". The request usually get down to the "where to fish" question
simply because most people new to fly fishing for trout, or even experienced anglers that are new to fishing
the Smokies, think location is the biggest key to success.
Sorry, but choosing a stream to fish in the Smokies for trout isn't like buying real estate. Success isn't a mater
of location, location, location with regards to your choice of streams. Of the over 700 miles of trout streams
within the park, I doubt you could find a one-mile stretch on a stream with water in it that didn't have a
hundred times more trout than you could catch in it.
I can think of two things off the top of my head that are not only misunderstood by those new to the sport, but
for the most part, misunderstood by those that have been fishing for a long time.
1. You will hear various data about the number of trout per mile in a trout stream. Nothing else known, and
given a choice of which stream to fish, if stream A has a population of 3000 per mile and stream B a
population of 4000 per mile, ninety percent of anglers would choose stream B. They may not even consider
the fact that stream B is twice the width of stream A, or many other important things. Even worse is that even
experienced anglers rarely consider the fact that your odds of success has little to do with how many
trout are in the stream. I can list dozens of things far more important than the number of fish in a stream
even when the data is compared on an equal basis. To shorten this for the Smokies, they all have far more
trout than you would ever believe from fishing them. Your success isn't going to be determined by selecting
the stream holds the most trout.
2. You will hear water temperature stressed over and over, with stress on the what's considered the ideal
water temperature. Ninety-five percent of the anglers I know don't understand how water temperature affects
their fishing. You will hear the trout need more food to eat when then water is 60 degrees versus what they
need when it is 50 degrees. While this is generally (and I stress the word generally) true, it isn't a direct factor
in how many fish you can expect to catch. In other words, to make it simple, the trout only need to eat one fly
for you to catch it. Present a trout a fly that imitates something it usually eats correctly and it won't make any
difference what the temperature of the water is. It will eat it. Put real plain, they will usually eat until they throw
up. One other little fact to help you understand this is that trout don't feel warm or cold like humans. They are
cold-blooded animals and their blood stays near the same temperature as the water they live in My advise is
that until you really understand the water temperature's effect on fish, forget it. Just use common sense. If
you see ice floating in the water, you may want to wait until another time to fish. If it's 95 degrees, climb the
mountain and fish a higher elevation where it is cooler.
Water temperature and/or the number of trout in a stream per mile both provide good excuses for
the lack of catching, but that's about it.
As mentioned last week in the "Getting Started" series article, there are three different species of trout in the
streams of the Smokies. Next week, I will tell you which species exist in the different sections of the various
major streams in the Smokies. This will eventually be something you will want to consider when choosing a
stream to fish.
Here is a promo clip that mentions one of our DVD fly fishing programs entitled "Getting Started"
Copyright 2013 James Marsh
New Schedule of Daily Articles
Mondays: Weather and Stream Conditions
Forecast - Coming Week
Tuesdays: Fly Fishing Strategies - Which
Flies To Use - Coming Week
Wednesday: Fishing Tales
Thursday: Smoky Mountains Fishing Report
Friday: Getting Started
Saturday: Fly Fishing School
Sunday: This Week's Featured Trout Food