It has been nuts in the Smokies for the past couple of weeks with temperatures in the 50’s and 60’s and we are getting several good hatches throughout the day. Not to mention the water levels have been perfect. I actually wasn’t going to leave the house today, because I needed to get some fly tying done, but with the sun out and warm weather I thought what the heck. When I got to the river there were a lot of grey midges coming off and the occasional small black stone, but nothing rising just yet so I started with nymphs.
My second cast of the day, this fish grabbed my nymph.
Later on in the afternoon the bugs really started coming off and there was a good mix of black stoneflies and black caddis. The fish were kind of selective at first, but after more bugs came off they were getting hungry. With the sun high and bright you will probably want to stay hidden. Around 3, Blue Wing Olives started coming off and the other bugs were pretty much done. The BWO’s were the thickest hatch for a while and the fish were loving it.
Two completely different looking rainbows that came from the same section of river.
Good dry fly fishing in January, it couldn’t get better than this. Pretty soon the Quill Gordons and Blue Quills will be hatching. They should start coming off in late February, but if the weather stays warm like it has been, who knows, maybe in a couple of weeks. I have heard from several people that they have seen a few Gordons on the lower stretches of the Little River. That is crazy.
I had to take a picture of this. A bunch of frog eggs in Elkmont.