Low water smallmouth

May has been hot and the rain hasn’t fallen in a while but despite that the fishing has been pretty darn good. The smallmouth rivers haven’t had much generation in a while so they’ve warmed up pretty quickly and are lower than normal for this time of year, but the fishing has still been steady. Some days we’ve had a pretty good topwater bite and other days it’s been all subsurface. Every day is different and it all depends on the conditions we’re given that day.

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Big day for Logan with 2 fish over 20″. Way to go buddy.

With crystal clear water we’ve had to think a few moves ahead, trying to get on the fish without being seen. With little cloud cover and plenty of sunshine it can make the fish a little skittish when the sun gets directly over head but longer casts and switching flies have kept the bite going. On a positive note, the low water has increased visibility making for some fantastic sight fishing at times.


Connie caught the smallmouth bug after her first time out.

I can’t believe that June has crept up on us. May has been incredible for just about everything, trout, smallies…. you name it. I can’t wait to see what’s in store for June and July because those are typically some of the best topwater fishing of the season. I just hope it’s half as good as May. If you’ve never tried fishing for smallmouth then I definitely suggest it.


Jerry from Wisconsin with a stud.

They are a hoot on a fly rod and we’ve got ’em everywhere so give us a call  if you would like to see what the fuss is all about. Also, don’t forget to check out our Facebook page for quick updates and conditions. Thanks for reading and have a blessed day.




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A new fly for the quiver

So while we’ve been on baby watch the last week and the Smokies are still closed I’ve been working on a new smallmouth fly for the past few days. Yesterday I was scheduled to do a trip for trout in the mountains but had to scratch it due to all the water still being locked up. Since we were mentally ready to go fish we weren’t going to fight it and we loaded up the boat and the 8wt’s.

The Holston and French Broad have been running pretty high the last few days with TVA trying to get the lakes down but there have been slight breaks in generation on the Holston. The water was still on the high side when we got to the river and with the cold front that had moved in the night before we didn’t have high hopes of catching a ton of fish, but thought what better conditions to try out a new fly. We were surprised to see the fish were still feeding good and even with the higher water they would still eat and even took an occasional popper.



The new fly worked.

The water temp on the Holston is still in the mid to high 60’s and the fish are healthy, fired up and looking for a fight. We are supposed to get some warmer days in the high 70’s starting Thursday and that should only increase the bite. This is great news considering the Clinch River has been running almost 8700 cfs, which is hard to fish unless throwing streamers for big browns is your thing or you’re willing to hike in from the gates and fish the park which I’ve heard the rangers are letting people do, LRO FISHING REPORT.

We are keeping in mind the fact that at some point something has got to give and a decision will be made with the government. Until then we are making the best of it and enjoying the fishing as much as possible. Hopefully TVA will start cutting back on the flows and we will be able to fish the Upper Holston and Clinch more through the Fall and Winter. We will keep you posted as much as we can with updates on the fishing so keep checking in.

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More of that high, muddy stuff.

The rain continues to fall sporadically here in East TN and the Smoky Mountain area. The Holston below Cherokee has started to generate a lot of water with no breaks and is a little colored right now. Hopefully it won’t last long. The French Broad has a slightly better schedule, but is a little chilly due to the generation at night so streamers are the way to go (baitfish, crawdads, etc.)



Greg with a two-hander

The freestone rivers coming out of the Smokies have had better flows this Spring and have been a little warmer. As of right now though they are flowing high and muddy and will be for the next few days. As you can see from the picture the rain clouds were thick and the bottom was ready to drop out. Even with the water high and clouds over head the fish are still feeding, heck they don’t have a choice. By this time of year we are focusing more time on the big rivers having great  topwater action and we have seen some already and we don’t expect that to change. This Spring has been delayed but with days reaching the 90’s for the rest of the week I would say that we are real close. Have a great day.


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