Tuesday, June 16, 2009
This one is not around here but some fish like this exist here, most notably the South Fork of the Holston in TN. Its not uncommon to see fish like this, over 20 inches, rising to a heavy hatch. We caught one such fish last year, way over 20 inches, on a size 16 dry fly, 7x tippet; it was caught and landed on the South Holston by Lynn Roloff during the legendary sulphur hatch. She did a masterful job of landing the fish.
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
We do a good many trips on the tailwater rivers of East Tennessee, most notably the South Holston and Watauga Rivers, and frequently encounter situations where downstream presentations are required. The South Holston is this way. The down and across presentation using a parachute reach cast and with the fly landing slightly to the near side of the rise/fish is hard to beat. I find that whether I am fishing or guiding someone it is the deadliest presentation you can make on a larger, streamwise, mature fish that is rising. The reason is the cast produces plenty of slack which makes for a long drag free drift and it shows the fish fly first instead of tippet, leader, and line. Here Robert Ruzicka scores on a downstream presentation, as he did about 80 -90 times in two days of guide trips with me on TN's South Holston- - - -which could be called the 'Henry's Fork of the East'.
Tuesday, June 2, 2009
These guys come off every year on streams that have them, it is the e.guttulata mayfly, better known as the "Green Drake", and because of its immense size relative to other flies we see it is a real meal for large trout. This particular bug was filmed on an Ashe County stream on May 27,2009 and what is funny is to see smaller fish try to take one down with two or three attempts. For a native trout this is a nice meal, the equivalent of a nice New York Strip for us. This mayfly is a burrower type, that is they are found in streams that have some mud banks or at least some bottom mud/sediments- - - and that is where they are found. The nymph is best imitated by a large Gold Ribbed Hares Ear or a Tan/Gold wooly bugger with the tail trimmed short. They can be from size 8 to 12 but this guy was a size 10. Only a few streams in our area have these flies, and where there's a fishable hatch of them its a known thing.
In our area several Ashe County streams have them, the Davidson River has them, and one of the best hatches occurs on Beaverdam Creek in Shady Valley, TN. In most places the hatch occurs between one week before Memorial Day to Memorial Day to one week after Memorial Day, or over about a two week period is when they can occur. The hatch is short lived. The spinners, a large whitish size 10 fly you'll see at dusk, is normally referred to as a 'coffin fly', and looks like a small piece of chalk hovering in the air. They are huge as well, and as you might have guessed, fish love to eat them. This is one mayfly you can hear fly by as well as see it fly by. For more information on Green Drakes visit Jason Neuswanger's excellent site here http://www.troutnut.com/specimen/771 .