Winter brown fish……well sort of

One thing my dad used to always say is there was never a dull moment in our house growing up as we were always getting into something. That’s what we can say about the weather here in East TN. There’s been every kind of weather you can imagine in the last couple of weeks and this week looks like it’s going to follow suit and not let us down. One day it’s warm and sunny, the next we’re layered up with rain gear. Would I have it any other way……no, because it keeps us on our toes. Plus the fishing is too good to go anywhere else, and lets face it, who notices the weather when you’re catching fish anyway.

Glenn and I got out to chase some winter (if you want to call it that) brown fish this past week to see what we could get into. One thing we noticed right off the bat was that even though we’ve had several warm days, the fish were still pretty lethargic like you’d expect in February, which we figured would be the case. We did however change some things up and get on a slight pattern. Heck, it was just nice to be able to fish in a t-shirt for a change. I went to some of the old favorite spots that we’ve found fish in before for this time of year and though some were reliable others seemed to be barren, which probably means that it’s still early and they will need a little more time. The good thing is we’ve been finding enough fish to make it worth while to justify missing out on a good day fishing for quality trout. Talk about your tough decisions!

   

The Dr. was in the zone. I cant wait to see what spring will have to offer.

Not many fish live to tell the story of how they fought an eagle and won.

As the weather begins to stabilize and fish settle in to their spring holds the action will speed up and the bite will become more aggressive and you’ll want to be here when it does. For those that can’t wait until then, the fish are there and have to eat so come on over and we’ll try to get that itch scratched. Hang around the fishing report for the next little while, we’ll keep you posted on what we’ve seen. Thanks for reading and give us a call if you coming to the Knoxville, Maryville or Smoky Mountain area, also go check out our buddies at Little River Outfitters for all your fly fishing needs.

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A way to beat the heat.

It has been a crazy summer so far (in a good way) with lots of fishing and hardly any time to keep the fly boxes stocked up. I know I have been slacking on the fishing reports but tying flies and getting lunches ready for the next day takes up all of the time left in the evenings leaving no time for updates. We’ve been on the water every day.

As we dive into summer and the days get longer and hotter the thought of fishing through the middle of the day isn’t  a fond idea with most fishermen. In our area we have several options to choose from to escape the heat of the day. Most tend to go high on the mountain and look for splashy rises from brook trout in the cool mountain streams as others fish early in the day and/or late in the evening on the tailwaters.

This is our favorite time of year when the sun is high, the water is warm and the smallmouth are active. The topwater bite has been incredible for the last month and we’re expecting this trend to continue through July and into August. Like trout, smallmouth love terrestrials and there’s plenty of beetles, ants, dragon flies and damsel flies on the water to keep the fish happy and focused near the surface which makes fishing poppers so effective.

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Andy and Steve’s first time catching smallmouth and loving every minute of it.

After the big one shook Andy’s fly and got away he felt short changed but didn’t let it get him down. His focus paid off later in the day when the bottom fell out from the popper and a stiff hook set shifted everyones attention towards the front of the boat.

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A great fish and on a popper to boot, way to go Andy.

With the lack of rain we’ve had over the past few months the water levels on most rivers are low and as clear as ever.   The upside to the low/clear water is that it’s made site fishing top notch which is very exciting as long as the fish doesn’t spook before the fly hits the water. Spooky fish combined with these conditions can be tough especially with a stiff wind blowing but changing tactics and getting out of your comfort zone can make all the difference in the world.

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Byron from Little River Outfitters works hard and doesn’t get to fish much, but when he does he lays it all on the line.

I got to fish with Richard and Jon Anna from Arkansas for 3 days where we targeted trout for a day and smallmouth for two. Our first day we had good topwater action for smallmouth which is always a good way to start the trip. On day 2 we started with high water and ended with low water and spooky fish, but after switching to micro flies and longer casts we got after them and Jon Anna got lunker for the day with a healthy rainbow. Day 3 brought it all together when Richard spotted a nice smallmouth and sight casted to it followed by a swift hook set and a long drawn out fight.

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Two great folks holding some well deserved fish.

Although the heat of the summer can be hard to get through for some, there are several alternatives to choose from to keep you on the water. If you would like to get out on the water and enjoy the warm weather give us a call. The bite was good in June and is the same for July and should be for August. Be sure to be safe on the water and drink plenty of water and Gatorade and wear protective clothing and/or plenty of sun screen. Take care and have a great day.

 

 

 

 

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We’re back on the Holston

We have been on the Holston the past couple of days and it has been fishing good. The caddis are still coming off strong and the weather is getting back to normal. Ted sr. and Ted jr. learned how to fish the park on monday and yesterday wanted to see what tailwaters were all about. They saw very quickly that they are 2 different worlds, but they loved both of them. They are beginners in fly fishing and were successful in both big and small waters. Here are some fish from yesterday’s float.

Man these guys were a lot of fun to fish with. If we would have done a smallie float too, they would have been some well rounded fisherman, but we will save that for next time. They are from Wisconsin and do a lot of ice fishing, so I don’t need to tell you how much they liked it down here. We are looking forward to all the warm weather coming in, and we will probably be doing some more smallmouth stuff. So stay tuned for more fishing reports.

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