Great Smoky Mountains Fishing Report 10/24/15
The National Weather Service is showing a chance of rain starting tonight and
extending everyday through next Thursday. According to them, we have a good
chance of rain everyday for the next week.

We had several, at least five or six, orders for bream flies this past week. All but one
order was from Texas. After watching the news about the hurricane in Mexico, I
wondered if they had any idea of what is about to hit them at the time they ordered.
After just getting hit by heavy rain for a several days, they have another round of
heavy rain on the way.

Everything is big in Texas, and that includes their bream. They have one spring-fed
river, the Guadalupe River, that has some very big bream and even smallmouth
bass. It is near the Austin and San Antonio area, about the last place you would think
a spring fed river would exist. I do know we get a lot of bream fly orders for that river.
Most of the Texas orders we get for bream come from anglers that fish private lakes
and ponds where they have stocked some special breeds of sunfish or bream. I'm
not as familiar with the latest and greatest of the hybrids and various interbred
species in that regard as I should be.

I know the biologist that stocks and maintains ponds for people like President George
Bush's Texas ranch, have experimented with special bred bass they call Tiger Bass.
My wife Angie, the great Tom Mann, and I fished their ponds near Montgomery a
couple of days a few years ago where they were raising the Tiger Bass. We caught
as many as 50 a day. At times, there would be four or five of them following our lures
trying to take the lure away from one another. If you wasn't paying attention, they
could easily take your rod away from you. They hit very, very hard. They are the
most aggressive bass I have ever caught. They reminded me of bluefish. Tiger bass
is a registered trademark of the
American Sportfish Hatchery in Montgomery, See the
picture on your right near the bottom of the page I took of Tom and Tina, his TV
show co-host. It was a Tiger bass Tom caught and that's the lake they raise them in.

Back to Great Smoky Mountains National Park, conditions for today remain about the
same as they have been. Low, clear water and pre-spawn brown and brook trout.
Many of the brook trout are spawning and some probably even finished. Some of the
brown trout in the middle and higher elevation where they exist are probably
spawning right now. My experience has been that most of the actual spawning of the
brown trout in the park has taken place around the last week of October. The lower
elevations are usually a few days behind the higher elevation. That's because the
water gets a little colder in the higher elevations sections where brown trout exist.
Remember, they start the pre-spawn process as the water temperature falls, not
increases. You shouldn't bother those that are in the actual spawning process. Many
anglers do try to catch them. It isn't illegal to do. I can't say it has hurt the population
in the Smokies, because there seems to always be a good population of them.

October Issue of the Perfect Fly Fishing Journal
We released the October Issue of the Perfect Fly Fishing Journal a few days ago. We
are going ahead and posting a link to it here to encourage you to sign up for it but in
the future, it may as much as a month after its release before we post links to it on
our websites. If you have already signed up, you should have already received the
October issue via email. If not, please take a few seconds to sign up on the form to
your right. One of the articles features Fly Fishing in Great Smoky Mountains
National Park.
October Issue Perfect Fly Journal

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Weather: (At Gatlinburg at about 1600 ft)  
Today, will be partly sunny with a high near 74. Wind will come from the southwest
around 5 mph in the afternoon.
Tonight, there's a 30 percent chance of showers.

Sunday, there's a 40 percent chance of showers. It will be cloudy with a high near 69.
Calm wind becoming north around 5 mph in the afternoon.

Smoky Mountain Stream Conditions:
The streams with links that have nearby USGS Station Real-time stream data: Click
the links to see updates

Little River: Rate: 82 cfs at 1.35 ft.
(good wading conditions up to 250 cfs, and with extra caution up to 400 cfs

Oconaluftee River: Rat 163 cfs at 1.15 ft.
(good wading conditions up to 500 cfs, and with extra caution up to 700 cfs)

Cataloochee Creek: Rate 43 cfs at 2.25 ft (good wading conditions up to 125 with
extra caution up to 150 cfs)

Little Pigeon River: It was low yesterday afternoon.

Hazel Creek and the other larger NC streams flowing into Fontana Lake:
Customers are reporting they are low.

Current Recommended Streams:
I think you could fish anywhere in the park you wanted to today.

Recommended Trout Flies:

Brown and White Belly Sculpins:
Hook Size 6

Blue-winged olives: 20 and 14
(Little BWOs,
Acentrella, Diphetor 20s and Eastern BWOs, Drunella 14s

Slate Drakes: 10/12

Little Yellow Stoneflies: 14/16

Little Yellow Quills: 16

Needle Stoneflies: 16/18

Great Autumn Brown Sedges: 10

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 the Slate Drake nymph. They are big swimming
nymphs that are easily caught and eaten by trout and are still hatching. If you spot
something else hatching (coming off the water), it will most likely be a Blue-winged
Olive. Change to the appropriate emerger, dun or adult imitations of the insect.

When the Slate Drakes, Mahogany Duns, and BWOs 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.

Little Yellow stoneflies are hatching, but of course, these hatches take place during
the evenings. All stoneflies crawl out of the water to hatch. Fishing a 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 stonefly.

Little Yellow Quills and Needle Stoneflies usually remain in the middle elevations and
sometimes, high elevations, until mid November. They are not usually found in the
lower elevations.

The big fall caddis, Great Autumn Brown sedges, hatch very late in the afternoon
and mostly early evenings. The egg laying occurs anywhere from mid afternoon until

Tips for Beginners:
Don't let anyone intimidate you by contending that fly fishing is more difficult to learn
and master than other types of fishing. It isn't.

Tips for the Self Proclaimed Experts:

Whatever Hits Me:
Thank you for visiting our website

James Marsh
Copyright 2015 James Marsh
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Tom Mann and Tina Booker, with a large Tiger Bass from the
American Fish Hatchery lake in Montgomery, Alabama.