Fall started off kind of warm this year with days in the 80’s which didn’t quite feel like fall. I know that doesn’t sound like a problem but when the leaves are changing and it’s football season there should be a slight chill in the air. We definitely have one now. Mornings start with temps in the 30’s and 40’s and end in the 60’s and along with us the fish are loving it.
Our smallmouth season is winding down with the arrival of the cool weather but we had a great season that ended with some high notes even with terrible weather. You can bet with the start of fall that there’s gonna be some cold fronts pushing in and some heavy rain along the way. Even with some occasional nasty weather the fishing has been great.
Dick loves smallmouth fishing more than anyone that I know, rain or shine.
Over the years we’ve fished with folks from all over the world but I think we have a winner for furthest traveled with Ben from Australia. He came here to get his hands on some smallies and he did just that with added bonus points for bad conditions.
A two hander the first time out. Way to go Ben.
Although we’re sad to see our smallmouth season drift away with the warm weather we have plenty of great days on the Clinch and Holston ahead of us to focus on. The Holston has started cooling off and the fishing has been pretty darn good the last few weeks. No dry flies yet but nymphs and streamers will sure keep things interesting. Dries like caddis and midges will come with the cooler weather. This summer was pretty mild and the water didn’t get too warm to hurt the fishing which has left the fish fat and healthy for the fall and winter.
Gary and Jim from Ohio did a great job even in bad conditions and muddy water.
The Smokies are definitely the big attraction right now with incredible views which happens with the changing of the leaves. The great fishing is an added bonus to the already beautiful surroundings. Nymphs have been best in the mornings due to the drop in temperatures overnight with dries in the afternoon as the day heats up. October is a great time to be in the Smokies but November is just as good with a lot less pressure for those who are trying to find a nice getaway.
Give us a call if you would like to get out on the water before the cold weather sets in. Don’t forget to stop in at Little River Outfitters while you’re in town for any situation on the water that you might find yourself in, these guys are great and can help you with any and all needs. Take care and have a great day.
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The fishing in the park has been different lately, now I didn’t say bad just different. The water is where we like it and there have been great hatches everyday, but the fish can be kind of finicky at times. This time of year, finesse isn’t the word I would normally use to describe the fishing in the park, but lately the fish have wanted the flies completely still on the water and we have had to stay low so they can’t see us. Sulfurs, Yellow Sallies, Tan Caddis, March Browns, and Golden stones are what we are seeing on the water throughout the day with terrestrials around the banks.
Here are Danny and Mike with their first Smokies trout. Both were Methodist pastors from GA with a passion for the Lord. It was great to talk about fishing and to fellowship on the river.
Passing fly fishing on to the youngsters is very important and when they get into the sport it’s pretty awesome. Kids are like sponges and they hear and process everything you say for the most part. They ask questions and you can tell they really think about the situation. Well that was the case for 11 year old Ryan and his mom Maureen while they were on the stream. Both were great and really got the idea of staying hidden from the fish and getting a good drift.
Check out the colors on this fish that Ryan caught on a Sulfur. Way to go Ryan.
The tailwaters are fishing great and the changing weather doesn’t seem to affect the fishing. We are still seeing short bursts of caddis hatches during the day on the Holston. They are feeding on dries in spurts and nymphs all day long. Chuck from Nashville has never done a float trip and wanted to see what all the fuss was about. When we got to the the river a few caddis were hopping and the weather was very nice. It didn’t take Chuck long get used to fishing from the boat and we were hooked up!
Getting off to a good start.
A double nymph rig was the charm, but we noticed the fish eating quite a few on top and Chuck wanted to try his topwater skills. Chuck was getting a bite to eat and noticed a fish keying in on adult caddis. He put down the sandwich and grabbed the rod to make a cast, SET!!!
We wanted to throw some streamers for smallmouth, but spent too much time on the upper side of the float and had to get down river. As we got to the bottom we found a pod of nice fish sipping bugs of the surface and had to stop.
One more nice fish at the bottom ramp and Chuck said “I’m Done”.
The Clinch is fishing great too and the Sulfurs have started hatching on the lower side of the river. I thought the fish would refuse dries at first, but they weren’t shy. The Sulfurs were about a size 16 and school bus yellow. The average size of the fish caught were around 12 to 16 inches and some from 18 to 20.
The generation came up and slowed down the fishing for a short while, but even then you could get the nymphs down and see some love. Your basic Sulfur nymphs will do and a size 16 yellow dry fly on top. The generation on both the Holston and the Clinch looks good and it will probably stay that way for a while. The Sulfur hatch is great, but it just doesn’t last long enough. If you are wanting to float the Clinch during this hatch give us a call.
This guy ate a dry.
Thanks for reading this long overdue fishing report and we hope to see you out on the water. Have a blessed day.
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