Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Holston River May 2nd- May 5th, 2008

We took a few days off from work and play to fish the Holston River in East Tennessee. This year our annual trip consisted of four people, two boats and one very technical river. We decided to camp at Panther Creek State Park, which was a little bit of a drive, but as with most TN State Parks it was kept in very good condition. The drive quickly became secondary.

Friday evening was spent scouting the ramps and looking for additional access to the river. After spending some time in the water and chasing a few rainbows and a carp, the group stopped at Breeding’s Restaurant in Blaine, TN for a cheeseburger. Then back to Panther Creek to plan Saturday’s float and listen to the coyotes throughout the night.

Every good day of fishing starts with breakfast of a sausage biscuit and coffee. We found the local Mc Donalds and loaded up for our morning meal on the road.

Dropping off the boats at the ramp at the Indian Cave access was somewhat exciting. Backing down the long, two rutted ramp was a challenge, but with fishing ahead the ramp was easily put behind us. On the water and with the ramp still in sight we began picking up fish on Zebra Midges.

We ran into local guide Tim Doyle www.smokymountainfly.com who offered up sound advice on how to navigate the shoals and falls in the river. As we floated the river Tim’s advice was taken into account and helped us to get through the rivers many challenging obstacles as well as preparing us for the long flat water ahead.

Thanks to Anthony Williams we can bring you this photo of a couple of us “middle aged daredevils” navigating the second set of falls. Although they are not Class II the falls did offer an adrenaline rush that we don’t get in Middle Tennessee.

We did not experience the spectacular Caddis hatch, the Holston has become known for over the past years, we did see Caddis as well as Sulphers come off the water throughout the weekend. We picked up fish both days on Zebra Midges, Stimulators, Hares Ears, and Partridge & Orange soft hackles. The most productive fly for my boat over the weekend was a #10 Bead Head Pheasant Tail.

According to several local guides the Holston is becoming a much better tailwater than in years past. The trout are healthy and with the opportunity to catch a smallmouth I would recommend stopping by for a shot. Overall the trip was a nice relaxing weekend which tested everyone’s boat handling and angling skills. Now the only question left unresolved is….where do we go in the fall?

1 comment:

  1. Sounds like a great trip! That is one river I have yet to fish. All the reports make it sound like I should try it out soon though...