April has been a mixed bag of weather and river conditions but the tailwaters and the Smokies have been pretty reliable for the most part. There are plenty of hatches happening on the streams of the Great Smoky Mountain National Park keeping the fish near the surface and the caddis hatch on the Holston has just now started showing itself, along with plenty of midges. The only thing that puts a wrench in the situation has been the rain. We’ve had our fair share of it, but thank goodness that not all of the streams and rivers have been blown out. There seems to always be somewhere to fish.
Can’t beat a good dry fly bite.
So what can make things even better (other than less rain) how about the smallmouth bite picking up, CHA-CHING!!!. For all you smallie junkies out there the early spike in water temps has gotten those brown fish on the move. They’ve started their pre spawn habits moving into more shallow water and bulking up on protein before getting on the beds. Some of the males are showing signs of spawning activity already with beat up tails and plenty of scares, just not in big numbers. Things seem to be happening a little later than usual, which I’m sure is due to the sudden changes in weather and water levels but once the weather settles things should get back on track.
Joe wasn’t about to let the rain stop him. Fish gotta eat.
We’ve seen the occasional fish come up and grab a popper, but the majority of fish are staying below and looking for bigger meals for less work. Crawdads and baitfish are getting more attention, but we’ve kept multiple colors and sizes of each ready, depending on what the day gives us. Some days we find ourselves fishing something completely different than we did the previous couple of days but that’s mainly due to the drastic changes in conditions. It isn’t always easy to find the right combo of flies and techniques, but patience and confidence can pay off.
Jim got fish of the day with this brute.
We’re just on the front end of our smallmouth season and things will only get better from here. Spring can be a great time to catch some of the best fish of the year and get in on some great hatches. May is looking like it’s going to be good with warm temps and with us getting high water early it looks like we’ll have a great spawn as well. If you would like to enjoy a day out on the water then GIVE US A CALL, we’d be glad to have you. You can also get quick day to day conditions, tips and updates on our FACEBOOK page. Things have been busy lately, but in a good way and we’re looking forward to seeing what the future has to offer. Take care and we look forward to seeing you on the water.