We’ve had a pretty rocky road with respects to predictability of flows on most of East Tennessee’s tailwaters here of late but this weekend heralds three days of recreational flows on the Clinch and the potential of good to better flows on both the Holston and the French Broad Rivers. If you had a chance to get out on a favorable flow you already know that the fishing has been nothing short of fantastic.
Both the Holston and Clinch have had an abundance of mayflies with sulfurs coming off in good numbers on both rivers. The Holston is still having heavy caddis hatches throughout the day in addition to the sulfurs. If I were headed to either river this weekend I would not be without a handful of Quasimodo Pheasant Tails in sizes 18, 16, and 14 in addition to split case sulfur nymphs in size 16. CDC comparadun sulfurs and elk hair caddis should also be included if catching fish on top is your thing.
The weather forecast is pretty much without a chance for rain straight through to next week. The mercury will be getting up there pretty high and that may be to the detriment of the Holston tailwater as TVA may choose to let loose with some cheap energy for those of us in the Valley wishing to keep our houses cool. The good news is that they are turning both the French Broad and Holston rivers off during the night time hours and that bodes well for those of us who love to chase small mouth in both rivers. With the dams idle at night both of these tailwaters experience low water during the daytime hours on their lower reaches and that’s just what the doctor ordered for small mouth fishing. If small mouth is not your thing but you’re interested in learning more, join us Thursday evening at 3 Rivers Angler for the Superfly Happy Hour and an informative talk on fly fishing for small mouth bass in our area waters.
The streams of the Great Smokies National Park are in pretty much perfect shape going into the holiday weekend. Fish are taking nymphs early and dries later in the day once the water has had an opportunity to warm up. We’ve entered into that happy summertime pattern in the mountains where a fly will work as long as it’s yellow. Remember if you head that way this weekend to fish you’ll be greately outnumbered by non-fishing visitors so it may pay dividends to get off the beaten path and away from the rubber tube hatch. Wherever you choose to go, have a great time and remember to be safe!