Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Fly Fishing the Caney Fork

We were on the Caney Fork this week and as we head into Fall the river is fishing good in some stretches and not as good in others. I specifically wanted to find the big rainbows that annually respond to our dries.  The big rainbows did not respond to the dry fly, but we did find a couple eating.  Maybe we should have fished a spinner or a sunk spinner...
The other rainbows did respond to the nymphs we presented. I spent some time at Cumberland Transit a couple weeks ago as Leo and I discussed the different nymph patterns. A lot of folks know, I have a couple nymphs that we go to and stay on for the most part. But, Leo introduced me to another nymph that I thought might just work. 

New patterns require time to prove their worth, some patterns work and some do not. We spent some time feeding this pattern to the fish. Although the browns and rainbow responded to the new pattern, the brookies didn't eat it once. The experiment was interesting and obviously will need several more tests to prove it stands the test of time.
Fall is on the way! The leaves are just beginning to make the turn to Fall colors. This has been a strange weather year to say the least and the rain along with the heavy recreation traffic has kept us off the river more than usual. For a while it seems we played catch up because the better flows were scarce, now however we can run half day trips for at least three days a week. It is a good time to get on the water to fish and to take photos of the changing colors.

Fish tails: Last year we photographed a lot of brown trout tails for this report. One interesting thing about a the tail of a fish is the size. Some of the tails are small when compared to the body and some are large compared to the body. It seems most of the larger browns have a tail that is a bit large even compared to the large body. If that is indeed true, in the next few years as some of these fresh stockers get a chance to survive because of the regulations, we should have more nice browns in the river. Yes I know that was more theory than anything...
Brook Trout are beginning to get their pre-spawn colors for their spawning ritual. They will continue to get more and more color over the next few weeks and continue to eat opportunistically. They will not be the spectacular colors of their relatives in Smoky Mountains, but the tailwater brookies are spectacular in their own right. 
Donnie has fished in the drifter quite a bit. He recently got on a plane and flew to Florida to fish for reds. Looks like he had a nice time and we hate him for it congratulate him on his catch. Nice work!

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