Monday, January 26, 2015

Middle Tennessee Fly Fishing

Fish Caught & Lost- It has been a week of more rain throughout Middle Tennessee, that's for sure. We also woke up to snow one morning, but late sleepers likely never knew because the snow was gone by 10:00 a.m. With all the recent rain, generation has been pretty big. Fortunately we have caught the rivers on low generation over the past few weeks and the fish have responded well.

The Elk River- Some days TVA has given us falling water. As I say with regularity, if you get a chance to fish falling water by all means fish falling water. It is Winter and anglers need to take advantage of every opportunity. Falling water on the Elk fishes best with nymphs, even when every bone in an old angling body says to throw the groceries at 'em. Set the depth a bit deeper if using a dry-dropper or indicator rig. Adjust the depth as the water level decreases. 
When fishing the Elk also take into consideration fishing above and below the shoals. As a very general rule, when wading and hitting shoals, it is good to fish the moving water below the shoal early and then a bit after lunch move to more flat water above the shoal. The right depth on the nymph is critical, especially when fishing moving water below a shoal. Getting enough weight on the fly and making sure the fly is getting in their face is very important. The trout normally don't venture out quite as far for a meal during the Winter. 
The Caney Fork-  We have seen some heavy generation and even some spilling over the past few weeks.  We go to the river in all types of weather, yes I have pushed the drifter down the ramp at Happy Hollow on a 13 degree day because the ramp was iced over and we wanted to fish. Between Columbia, heavy wool and possibly a bit short on brains, weather isn't much of a deterrent. Weather is one thing, but fishing super-high water is something entirely different and sometimes turns fishing into more of a boat ride. But, you don't know 'til you go.

Catching on one generator can be good this time of year and getting a constant one generator release would be prime time to throw some meaty streamers. We haven't gotten the opportunity to fish a one generator constant flow, but we take the transition from two generators to one generator pretty serious too. Heavy sinking lines and a fly with enough weight to break through the surface will get those streamers in front of the fish, the rest is between you and the fish. Frankly we have been catching solid numbers when pulling streamers so that's what we will be doing while the we are getting this type of release. 

OK, so we have been getting good numbers and had our chances at some really nice fish. There are times that things just don't work out. Like the photo above. The photo is a fly just as it comes unbuttoned. So here is what happened...

Ten minutes before this photo was taken we had a big brown follow and then ghost at the last second. A short time later we came into the next high-value area and had another follow from another nice brown. The brown ate right at the boat and then turned hard to the bank when it felt the pressure of the rod. The fish ran around the front of the drifter and made a couple jumps. The next thing we knew the fly was coming out of the water and the pressure on the rod was gone. It looked like everything was going well and then it was over as fast as it began. Fish lost...

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Elk River Fishing Report 2015

We have all heard of the Dog Days of Summer, otherwise known as hopper season, and now we have the Dog Days of Winter. The Dog Days of Winter are easily identified when temperatures dip into the single digits and Ginger the Non-Fishing Dog won't even lift her head when the door is opened. Nope the warm wood floor is fine by her, thank you very much...and drop some food in the bowl before heading to the river. So with everyone else still lazing around the house it was up to me to get out in the eight degree temps to see what's happening on the tailwaters of Middle TN. Every man needs a mission right?
Anglers will be happy to know that in spite of all the rain, high water and heavy releases, the fish are still hungry on our tailwaters. That's right they still have to eat and if an angler can catch some falling water, well it's recommend.

There has been ice on all the rivers. Not that the rivers are frozen over because that is certainly not the case. But there seems to be ice in all the shady areas on the bank. That may have changed since this last round of rains over the past few days. The ice makes for some nice photos and also the ice-falls show clearly where there may be a small channel coming into the river. I always wondered why fish hold right here and now I know...or at least I think I know.

The fly of choice has been the nymph. We fished streamers until arms began to get sore with very little action. It was amazing how much better the nymph performed. So we settled into nymphs and hit all the structure. The structure may have been a blowdown, a ledge, or just a channel, but whenever we found some structure we fished it. We fished it and the fish responded.
The fish responded from most every place thought they should be hiding. There is one brown that we have lost with three different anglers over the past few months. This fish is sitting at the upstream side of a very large root ball. The nymphs have been going into the spot on near perfect drifts. The fish ate more than three times, but we've only had three solid hook ups. Of those hook-ups we had on clear break of the tippet and two short fights and just enough time to get to know the fish. So the story goes on and we will keep trying to bring this fish to the net. It is just another reason we keep going to the river during the "Dog Days of Winter". 
To see the latest fishing report click here and for more booking information see our Homepage.  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.

Monday, January 5, 2015

Fly Fishing the Hiwassee River...2015 Here We Come

While others were ringing in the new year, I was fast asleep, at least until the people in the neighborhood began shooting off fireworks to celebrate turning the page on another calendar year. But, soon I was back to sleep and then awake at 4:00 a.m. or there about. After stepping over the dogs to get the truck loaded, the cruise was set as I headed East to meet up with Breck. We were to meet at the previously agreed upon time and we were both early, which is usually a sign of two anglers who are more than ready to go fishing.
We began with a decision concerning where to take out the raft at the end of the day. There were two conventional options. One ramp was close and could cut the trip a little short. The other ramp was a grueling 8 hour float that usually ends with rowing out the last couple miles or more. So, we decided on a third option, just drag the raft up the bank when the river came close to the road. 
The first few minutes of this cold float were just that, cold. But with the nymph rod working we were soon into fish and getting warmer with each hookset. The first several fish were hungry rainbows. The usual stuff was working and the bows seem a bit aggressive. Before long the streamers were flying. The first fish on the streamer, a nice little brown with a big attitude. The streamers continued until we saw rising fish. The rising fish were eating hatching bugs. That's when a dry was knotted to the tippet on the Orvis glass rod. Tossing the little dry on the edge of the wide foam line, with just the right drift, produced some fine early in the year action. There it was, the first fish on the dry was putting a bend in this cool little rod.
After a bit of dry fly action it was back to the streamer rod. Breck is dialed in on the Hi and guided the raft to all the good holes. We pulled streamers most of the last leg of the trip and switched between a couple Galloup patterns that have proven their worth plenty of times in the past. At one point every cast produced either a fish or at the very least a hot follow. So we had punched our fun tickets for the day. As all good things do this float came to an end and it was time to pay the piper as they say. I never really liked the piper...
This isn't the first time or first river on which we have dragged the raft to the trailer. Since there were light pole size wood stops dug into the ground we were going to have to put some muscle to getting the raft out.  As Breck said "taking the boat out was a real drag..." After pulling the boat out of the water and up the bank, just trying to catch my breath kept me from saying much of anything. 
To see the latest fishing report click here and for more booking information see our Homepage.  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.

Friday, January 2, 2015

Costa Interchangeable Polarized Glasses For Sale

There's a lot of stuff laying around here. Every Winter I clean-up just a little and usually it leads to buying more stuff. But, the intentions are good, with the selling part anyway. It is time to clean out the polarized fishing glasses drawer and there is no way I will be replacing these with another pair, or maybe two. Nope no way...OK that's a flat out lie. Anyway here we go. 

This are a pair Costa Interchangeable polarized glasses with mojo. They have a nifty carrying case to keep them safe, a pair of light yellow lens to brighten up that cloudy day and a pair of darker lens to darken that blue sky and sunny day. None of the 4 lenses have a scratch. The warranty information and instructions for lens changes are there, as well as the matching lens cleaning cloth. They are worth $100.00 or so and that's what I am asking. If you are interested just send an email to david at and we can work on some way for you to take a look through them.