Great Smoky Mountains Fishing Report 07/01/15
Sorry, I missed getting a report posted yesterday, morning. I was up as usual at
4:00 AM, but a series of thunderstorms came through Pigeon Forge until I had to
leave for a medical checkup appointment in Knoxville at 8:00AM. I don't like working
on my computer when the lights and TV are going on and off from lightning. It got
pretty rough for about an hour. The wind blew our garbage can down the road so
fast, that lightning struck at it twice and missed it both times.
Actually, I stole that line from my late Texas uncle. It did blow our can over.
By the way, I've figured out why there are a lot of shark attacks on the North Carolina
Coast. It has been hot and more people are getting in the water, stupid. By
the way, a lot more people are being hurt and killed getting run over by cows and
bulls What do I know about sharks? Check This Video Out By the way, the young
guy in this very old video, is yours truly. It doesn't show Captain Red,(Capt. Red
McKlean, an ex-Navy pilot), the captain I featured in the video who was the boat
captain in the Jaws 11 movie. He was a friend of mine and was on several or my
original nationally syndicated TV shows on saltwater fishing. There is just a short clip
of him at the very end. We do catch some large shark in the program, the stupid
promo someone put together at Bennett doesn't even show. One was either 291 or
391 pounds, I can't remember for sure. I have caught many that large but never
enjoyed shark fishing. It is messy, work. Often, they were caught accidentally fishing
for other species. I will try to find a picture of it and show it later. I had one cut off
before we tried to land it in Cozumel, Mexico, that was longer than the beam of a 54
foot Bertram. It would have torn the deck and fighting chair up. It ate a large grouper I
Back to the Smokies, my buddy Harvey drove about two-hundred miles to fish the
Straight Fork in Cherokee, yesterday. He reported it was blown out. Looking at
everything with a USGS station this morning, I feel like right now, conditions are about
as good as they can get on the first of July. Even Little River is in decent shape. The
weather is a little cooler and the trout are probably out walking around on the banks
with their britches down. I stole that line from my Granddaddy Marsh who told me that
when he returned from fishing with a big string of crappie. I couldn't have been over
six years old, or I would have been with him. It is strange how you never forget some
On my way to Knoxville, yesterday, morning, I did notice the little Pigeon River was
red as a beet. I'm going to find out why. My guess is some contractor upstream
somewhere, or maybe even one of the two Cities themselves, didn't comply with the
regulations. Normally, it would just be high and stained. Most anglers don't know it,
but there are lots of smallmouth bass from Pigeon Forge through Sevierville. Some of
them are big, in the five pound range. There have been enough problems with the
Gatlinburg sewer plant a few years ago. Now, it appears it amounts to a huge amount
of construction going on. I'm happy there are jobs and growth, but not at the
expense of the natural resources that have made that possible.
Weather: (At Gatlinburg at about 1600 ft)
Today, expect showers and thunderstorms, mainly after 2pm. The chance of
precipitation is 60%. Tonight, showers and thunderstorms are likely. The chance of
precipitation is 60%.
Thursday, expect more showers and thunderstorms. Some of the storms could
produce heavy rainfall. The high will be near 78. Southwest wind will be around 5
mph. The chance of precipitation is 80%.
Smoky Mountain Stream Conditions:
The streams with links that have nearby USGS Station Real-time stream data: Click
to links to see updates:
Little River: Rate: 96 cfs at 1.46 ft.
(good wading conditions up to 250 cfs, and with extra caution up to 400 cfs)
Oconaluftee River: Rate 347 cfs at 1.62 ft.
(good wading conditions up to 500 cfs, and with extra caution up to 700 cfs)
Cataloochee Creek: Rate 52 cfs at 2.30 ft (good wading conditions up to 125 with
extra caution up to 150 cfs)
Little Pigeon River: I think It is running about normal.
Hazel Creek and the other larger NC streams flowing into Fontana Lake:
According to our customers fishing, the streams are on the high side of normal but
still in good shape.
Current Recommended Streams:
I think you can fish about anywhere you want to today.
Recommended Trout Flies:
Brown and White Belly Sculpins:
Hook Size 6
Cinnamon Caddis: (mostly Abrams but a few in all of the streams) 16/18
Green Sedges (Caddis): 14/16
larva (green rock worms)
Slate Drakes: 10/12
Golden Stoneflies: 10/12
Little Yellow Stoneflies: 16/14
Light Cahills: 16
Inch Worms: Hook size : 10/12/14
Green/Tan/Orange Hoppers: 10/12
Black Carpenter Ants: 16/18
Japanese Beetles: 16/14
Recommended Fishing Strategy:
Keep in mind, the strategies I am recommending is for the maximum odds
of catching numbers of fish. Many prefer or favor a dry fly and by all means there
isn't anything wrong with that. It's just a fact that if nothing is hatching at the time, it
reduces your odds of success. You can still probably hook some trout, just not as
many as if you fish subsurface. Of course, this is also based on using good
techniques and the right flies. Some guys don't know how to fish below the surface.
If you fished the day or two before and know where something is hatching, fish the
nymph or larva stage of it. If you haven't fished the day or two before, until I spotted
something hatching, I would fish Slate Drake nymph. They are big swimming nymphs
that are easily caught and eaten by trout and are hatching. If you spot something
else hatching (coming off the water), it will most likely be Light Cahills or Sulphurs.
Change to the appropriate emerger, dun or adult imitations of the insect. Slate
Drakes are starting to hatch but remember, they hatch out of the water. Only the
spinners get on the water unless it is purely accidental.
When the Slate Drakes, Light Cahills or Sulphurs are hatching, there will be a
spinner fall late in the day. Often, you can catch more trout fishing the spinner fall
quicker than you can during the hatch. Change to the spinner imitation of the mayfly.
Golden Stoneflies and Little Yellow stoneflies are hatching, but of course, these
hatches take place during the evenings. Both species of stoneflies crawl out of the
water to hatch. Fishing a Golden Stonefly nymph or Little Yellow Stonefly nymph
very late in the afternoon near sunset should produce. If you see the stoneflies
depositing their eggs on the surface of the water, switch to the adult imitation of the
As mentioned above, Light Cahills and in some isolated area, Sulphurs,are hatching.
Look for the Light Cahills in the faster water areas. They will get caught up in the fast
water runs and riffles. Look for the Sulphurs in the slower water of the larger pools.
Tips for Beginners:
Tips for the Self Proclaimed Experts:
Whatever Hits Me:
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