The smallmouth fishing around East TN has been grade A and it has been all topwater flies. Streamers are still working well, but who cares when fish are leaping out of the water to get a popper. I had the opportunity to take Ryan Hicks, a Florida native, on his first fly fishing trip and it was one to remember. These guys were fired up about some topwater,which is great because Ryan got to see just how mean a smallmouth can get.
Shortly after we started fishing Ryan had a blow up on his fly and said this is a nice fish, he was in for a surprise.
After missing a few fish, Ryan decided to buckle down and get serious. It didn’t take long before he caught several more fish and some nice ones. Needless to say, he was the one that was hooked.
Smallmouth have eyes that are sensitive to light so when that sun gets high, they will find shade and cover to hide from it. This time of year when the sun stays out for a long time, the fish will spend a lot of their time in cover, making it hard to get to them and hard to see. Patience can be the key this time of year when it starts to get warm. Trust me, when you throw a fly in the shade and let it sit, something is looking at it so give it time to reveal itself. It could also hit it as soon as it touches the water so stay focused.
Ask Ryan about it he will tell you the same thing.