Great Smoky Mountains Fishing Report - 02/05/14
For the first time in a long time, things are turning out much better than expected.
This last go round of rain amounted to almost nothing. So far, it hasn't affected the
stream levels but a tiny bit and looking at the radar this morning at 5:45 AM, it
appears the rain for today is about over. The only problem I see for today, is it will be
a little windy. The streams are still too high to safely wade.
Yesterday, I mentioned that I would go over a technique I use when the water is high
but the levels are much lower than I anticipated and it wouldn't work today like I
thought it would.
Smoky Mountain Weather:
Today will be cloudy with a temperature falling to around 40 by 5pm. Southwest winds
10 to 15 mph will gust as high as 20 mph. There is a chance of rain (30%) tonight,
turning to snow later tonight. The low will be about 26. Temperatures will return to a
more normal wintertime level on Thursday with a high near 39 degrees.
Smoky Mountain Stream Conditions:
The streams with links have nearby USGS Station Real-time stream data:
Little River: Rate 816 cfs at 3.09 ft.
(good wading conditions up to 250 cfs, and with extra caution up to 400 cfs)
Oconaluftee River: Rate 1200 cfs at 2.74 ft.
(good wading conditions up to 500 cfs, and with extra caution up to 700 cfs)
Cataloochee Creek: 333 cfs at 3.33 ft
(good wading conditions up to 125 cfs, and with extra caution up to 150 cfs)
Little Pigeon River doesn't have a station nearby. My guess it is still high.
Hazel Creek and the other larger NC streams flowing into Cherokee Lake: My guess
it is still too high to wade.
Current Recommended Streams
You could fish any of the lower elevation streams where trout exist today. I mention
"where trout exist" for those not very familiar because some sections of the lower
elevation streams in the park do not hold trout. If you pick your spots carefully, you
may can step into the water in places where you can make some cast but otherwise,
you will have to fish from clear areas on the banks.
Recommended Trout Flies:
1. Blue-winged Olives:
Hook Size 18
nymphs (this would be the main fly)
2. Midges: Cream
Hook Size 20/22
3. Sculpins: Especially good in off color, high water & early/late in the day
Hook Size 6
White Belly Sculpin
4. Winter Stoneflies: 18/16
Recommended Fishing Strategy:
I would fish streamers during low light situations such as early and late. We may have
enough clouds to keep the light level low enough that I would do that most of the day.
Other than that, I would fish the BWO nymph. I know the water temperature has
jumped up quite a bit but the trout don't usually respond instantly, but It is possible
some little BWO could hatch today with the cloud cover we will have.
Tips for Beginners:
Unless someone is with you, I would stay out of the water.
Tips for the Self Proclaimed Experts:
Not a bad day to catch some nice fish on a streamer. The Perfect Fly Brown Sculpin
is a very good fly to use for that.
Whatever Hits Me:
I just hope this weekend's weather turns out to be better than the forecast.
Copyright 2014 James Marsh
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