Sunday, August 10, 2014

Howard and Dry Flies on the River

Our plan was to pick up where we left off in June. On that trip we tried to catch fish on dries and had a little luck, but for the most part the fish weren't looking up. As everyone knows it is tough to get a fish to eat a dry if they aren't looking up. After some recon I had a good feeling the fish were eating on top and was pretty sure we had the right arsenal of flies. On this trip we would spend a little time dredging fish with nymphs and then switch to the dry at sight of the first fish that was eating hard on top. We would take what the river gave and have a good day even if the plan went to crap.
We were minutes into the float when Howard hooked up with a stocker on the nymph and the skunk came off early. We settled into a well-known routine and the next fish was a lot nicer. We made a stop at some structure where he pulled out a few more as we tuned-up for the day ahead.
We pushed down the river and found the first fish on top. It was eating hard and in water about a foot deep. There was a dry fly on the Super Fine Glass rod so it made sense to put it in Howard's hand. He peeled some line off the reel and laid a cast right at the top of the rise ring. The fish ate hard again and Howard drew tight on the fish, then came the fight. Howard kept control with the little glass rod and soon the fish was in the net. Then there was another fish and another. We felt like we got the best of that shoal and moved on.
The float continued. We found some more fish rising off a small grassy point, slipped into position unnoticed and dropped the anchor. We fished that point for a good 30 minutes. For most of that time Howard was getting good drifts and I was netting fish.  He let me take a try and I even got my fix. The bite continued but then bite stopped and we moved on. We fished nymphs through some runs and over drop-offs into pools. The fishing was good and the catching was constant.
The next spots yielded the same results on dries and we felt like we knew what we were doing. Feeling like you know what you are doing or feeling like you are so far in the weeds you can't even see the river your floating on, comes and goes. Believe me either feeling can come or go as quick as a topwater take. So when things are going your way, enjoy it because the next trip to the river could be the toughest day of fishing ever. We chose to enjoy the day and enjoy the fish that were responding to what we were offering.
This week we have battled scattered showers every day. This day was no different and it would have been a miracle if we didn't get a soaker. The soaker came and it rained as hard as I ever seen...well at least as hard as I can remember. The hard rain knocked down most of the bugs that were flying or trying to fly, but the fish continued to respond to nymphs. When the sun came back the fish stayed down and Howard dredged them up with nymphs. We drifted down toward the takeout and Howard suggested I should take a shot. So I picked up the glass rod and dropped a dry to a likely spot. We ended the day after that fish ate and was brought to the waiting net.
On the way home the rains picked up all over Middle TN and the feeder creek gauges went up as far as 4 feet in some cases. We got this trip in the books just in time. We took what the river gave us and enjoyed our day fishing nymphs and dries. We will remember this day for a while, especially when things aren't going our way and the fish aren't doing what we want. Howard thanks for coming out again and good luck on your trip out West.

To see the latest fishing report click here and for more booking information see our rates page.  If you are a seasoned angler or have never picked up a fly rod and want to set up a day on the river just email or call/text 615-796-5143 to book a day on the water.


  1. It was in fact a great day of fishing. Although we did not get the big one to the net we cought a lot of nice fish. I'm looking forward to our next shot at the river, bet it won't be as good as this one.


  2. Howard we have some real good days to come on the Middle Tennessee rivers. Looking forward to the next time.