Wet, Mild, and Springlike…..
Tues…Jan. 17, 2017 Temps near zero, nearly a foot of snow and then less than a week later 70F and sunshine…..typical of winters here in Appalachia. At least that is how our weather can be sometimes. Water levels are in great shape though, and snow always has a way of doing that for the water table. In fact, many areas are at or near normal level for the first time in a long time. A lot of our river gauges locally looked like the one below on the South Fork of the New with the solid blue line at the bottom. This solid blue line indicates ice, or rather, that the river is frozen all the way across. Many waters were like that before the thaw.
Local waters have fished pretty fair as of late, and TN tailwaters have as well. Time for the junk fly box (y2ks, squirmies, squirminators, mop flies, eggs, etc.) on NC waters, double rigs working well when you use a large fly or junk bug on top and a smaller fly (midge) as a dropper. Low flows (spilling) on the Watauga continue where a constant 160cfs has been the flow….a great level to fish. Midges, small bwos, and black winter stones (snowflies/willowflies) have been on the menu; if on the upper river scuds are always a good option. On the South Holston the TVA was sluicing, a constant 200cfs, but that is often erratic and you can enjoy it while it lasts but sometimes they only do it for short periods. Like this week. They were back to running full bore today (Tuesday 1/17) as they are “testing a unit”….that is code for “you don’t know what release you ‘ll get til you get it”. Fishing has been ok though, small bwos and midges, and the upper river still some post spawn browns around that you might fool on an egg pattern or junk fly.
Some videos below you might find interesting…..the first two from one of our loyal equipment suppliers, Simms Fishing Products. The second is from our favorite rodmaker, Sage Fly Rods. I get a ton of stuff from both of them and I enjoy using every bit of it. They do a great job of taking care of Pro Staff & Guide Ambassadeur folks.
Client Ron Davis and I put many serious bends in his new Sage 490-4 MOD (two photos below) on a late fall float trip on the South Holston. One great thing about the rod, incredibly light and well balanced it is and with a soft delicate tip like the LL, SLT, ZXL….feels a lot like them but with more oomph in the rear end.
Also this 4 weight of Ron’s had a full wells front, which I had never fished on a 4 weight but liked a lot. It was a great rod, and several nice South Holston browns and rainbows were landed on it ….fishing to rising fish….with dry flies….or as any rod should be broken in…right?
Local waters got another shot of rain last night, SW Va and East TN and some areas of NW NC got a good bit, up to 1.5″ in spots……
Have some musky trips, local trips, and tailwater trips coming up this week, should have a few good reports.
Posted via the Web with WordPress 4.0