Where Fly Fishing is a Professional Passion…..

Rough Start to Month Now Creating Some Banner Days…

Sun. Oct 11, 2015…..What started early last week as torrential rain and incredible flooding ended with several great days, including three days that included some of the best small stream fishing of all year, one day of some of the best Delayed harvest stream fishing of the whole year, and one of the top 5 days on the Soho of the entire year.  So yeah, its been a great recovery from all the bad weather.  Had an interesting week with the weather issues, one of which was a large tree falling on our house, one thing we are still dealing with as far as extensive repairs.  But when I see what is going on in SC, we have it way better than those folks.  Our prayers are with them.

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Here’s a recap of our most recent fishing this week…..

On 10-8-2015, Thursday, I did a guided trip with Larry Pritchett and Tom Goldston, High Point, NC, Tom Currin, Atlanta, GA,  on the TN South Holston, we fished the South Holston and one NC water and caught about 80 or so on the South Holston, then about a dozen on the NC water that we fished. The SoHo was fantastic, we fished a variety of stuff wet and dry and did very well catching fish on a variety of flies. The theme was definitely SMALL….lots of blue winged olives and midges on the water, creating the need for some 18-22 flies for sure….saw a few sulphurs but not as many with the midday release coming.


To do what we did in a little over a half day of fishing and several ( I think 5 of them) 20″ plus rainbows to boot, the best one being a 22 incher, I’d say it was a great day. We fished til the water came up, then we decided to take a quick lunch break, and then we headed downriver.


By the time we finished lunch it was 2pm, so we decided to head to the NC side for some fishing since the water was an hour away from coming up anyway where we were. We did fair where we fished, not as well as I would have expected, but the water was still up and we still landed about a dozen fish, which is a good afternoon by some standards. We’ll take it! In any case it was a great day by any standard. Weather was phenomenal, the fellowship was the same, and the catching…..well it was that too.

On Friday I did a hike in backcountry group Trip with  Brad Ball, Stephen Starnes, and Steve Lucy, we did a hike in water in the upper Nolichucky (TN) drainage and also a Madison Co NC water…..  Its incredible the variation in NC, TN, and VA during the past weeks’ flooding.  TN was mostly spared, VA had some high water, incredibly so in some parts, surprisingly little in others, and NC had a lot of variability as well.  Some NC waters are in great shape, some are still high, some are fishing well, some are totally blown out.  Not the water we fished on Friday though…..it was ideal.


We landed between 50 and 60 wild fish on dries……water levels there were perfect, much improved area wide….dry fly fishing was fantastic, in fact a nymph was never tied on…..stimulators, caddis, parachute hare’s ear….all produced numbers of fish. All rainbows, all WILD, truly special. A great hike as well, and some beautiful scenery.


Its really amazing though how fast high elevation waters clear out after a hard rain and lots of rain.  Water levels were great, and about as absolutely perfect for high terrain small water as you could ever have.  That is probably why we did so well.  Great water, great fishing though, I imagine that is a theme I’ll be talking a lot of in the coming weeks.  Its Fall and we have water….what a blessing that is.  We have available every month a Printable and Free Fly Hatch Chart ….  Click here to view or download an October hatch chart.

On 10-10-2015 I guided  Dave & Marianne Link, Raleigh, NC, NC Mtns, met Dave and Marianne early in the NC Mtns and we were off to where we were going to fish for the day. Water levels still up, but much improved over the past several weeks. Fall is here, and the fish are definitely feeding up with winter coming…..and it was on from the first cast.


The water was about 6 inches higher than normal, which made for zero dry fly fishing but the nymph and streamer fishing, as it will usually be in high water, was lights out…..as good as it gets. Dave is an experienced angler and we’ve done many trips in the past, but this was Marianne’s first fly fishing trip. She landed about 15 fish, a mix of rainbows and browns……it was great.


All of our fish came on double streamer rigs and double nymph rigs rigged right angle style. Great day though we fished in all day rain….. the kind of day I’d choose if I am fishing…..which helped us have an over 50 fish day , way beyond it in fact, lost count…… realistically more in the 70 to 75 range. In any case it was great. We finished up about an hour before dark and called it a day.


Great end to the week though, and starting the process of making up a lot of cancelled /rescheduled trips with clients…..have had more of that the last two months than I can remember in decades.  One reason my availability of days is limited ……I’m urging clients I have a good many Nov and Dec dates still open but they won’t be for long.  I’ll probably blow through November’s availability in the coming days so anyone wanting to do a trip before Christmas its not too early to nail a date down.  Fishing should be great, and of course, we guide/fish all winter long so we don’t have ‘an off season’ , a ‘slow down’, a ‘slow time’, or a time when we are ‘less busy’.


Have trips all week, starting with a three day SoHo trip Mon thru Wednesday with one client from Fayetteville, one from SC, and three from Delaware.  Mid week I have a couple small stream trips , and another small stream trip on Saturday.  Busy week, its the busy season, and look forward to some great days.


NC Wildlife Commission has put out a revised DH stocking schedule that covers stocking schedule for waters they were unable to stock this week due to high water and flood conditions.  They will often do this when conditions make it likely that large numbers of stocked fish would be lost because of high water.  Most places fared quite well, and while they stocked some on 10/1 before the high water it appears that the fish on most waters that we stocked pre flooding did quite well.  Click here to view a revised schedule.

The NC Wildlife has created another public fishing area on the South Fork New in Watauga Co wherein anglers can access an area that has opportunities for wild brown trout, smallmouth bass, rock bass, redeyes…..click here .  Also, the NC Wildlife stocked a new water at Hanging Rock State Park, the 12 acre lake there with 1200 catchable sized rainbows.  For more info on this new trout water click here .


Have a blessed week, will be posting more reports all week…


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