Flymen Fishing Company

South Holston River Fly Fishing - The fun is being had

The fun is being had

This is a true story of events during a guided trip on the South Holston River in spring 2019.

Gloria is a name you may hear being yelled from any number of rivers surrounding Asheville, NC. Sometimes its a coaxing whisper, sometimes a frustration yell and sometimes a chuckling cheerful G-L-O-R-I-A. My client, a dry fly purist and wonderful person to vicariously fish through is always searching for HER big fish, "Gloria." Today I heard Gloria's name being called several times from the back of the boat on the South Holston River.

The first time, I heard it echoing off the rock bluff to my 9 0'clock, glooooo-riaaaaa.
I turn around and the rod is bent over and the reel is singing. "Oh gloria" she said and I absolutely chuckled and netted a beautiful 18" wild brown trout caught on a size 18 sulfur mayfly emerger.

A few sighs and sips of water later and I hear the name again. Same deal, same fly, same chuckle. She taps her feet, claps her hands and dips them in the water for a quick grip-n-grin.

The FUN is being had.

While these were solid fish I knew they weren't Gloria. Gloria was a mile or so downstream. I saw her there in a particular location I had been two days prior with my client's husband. He and I spent about 2 hours working a big brown trout on dry flies. We trusted the process, rested the picky eater, tried again and again. We gave it our best but the stars just didn't align during that particular 2 hours.
I think many guides could say that women usually out fish men. I am not sure what magic is working there but its real and i've witnessed it time and time again. I will continue to observe and hopefully learn the magic. I say all this because when we pulled up to Gloria's doorstep she was waiting with a red dress on and passing out lemonade. We spent over an hour presenting flies and resting the fish. Of course, Gloria eventually ate HER fly. If we weren't the last boat on the water, everyone on the river would have heard Gloria's name shouted in unison by all three of us at the top of our lungs. It was such a joyful noise you'd think we were at church or a Van Morrison concert.
Cheers to all the G-L-O-R-I-A-S out there!

This is a true story of events during a guided trout float trip led by Galen Kipar on the South Holston River in East Tennessee in spring 2019.


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Fly Tying: How to tie "Hot Randy's Spring Peeper" for Smallmouth Bass

Fly Tying:  How to tie "Hot Randy's Spring Peeper" for Smallmouth Bass

This is a great pattern to use when fly fishing for Smallmouth Bass. When the little frogs known as spring peepers come out to play, so do the smallies. Here in Asheville, NC this pattern has produced for us time and time again on our freestone rivers the Nolichucky River & French Broad River.

JULY Fishing Report: South Holston River & Watauga River

July was a good month.  It was a hot, busy month on the water.  While below average water levels and above average temperatures have made the Smallmouth Bass fishing challenging, the tailwaters in East Tennessee have been fishing great!  Since the South Holston River and Watauga River are tailwaters (Rivers fed by a dam where the water comes from the bottom of the lake), they stay cold enough and flow enough for the fish to remain happy.  We've been experiencing some extra happy fish this summer with the abundance of Japanese Beetles falling out of the trees.  Both brown and rainbow trout are looking for them actively and the Big Brown Trout are on the prowl.   The Beetles have been on for two or three weeks and we anticipate they will continue through August.  If you want in on the action, give us a call!  We still have a little availability in August, so book sooner than later!

Here's a few of July's highlights...  

   

Canada: Bad bacon. Decent beer. Unforgettable smallmouth fishing

Asheville Fly Fishing Company guide Knox Campbell just got back from fishing Canada.  His trip was of a "Guide's day off" nature.  A little R&R, R&D, and quality time with friends.  Upon his return he had a serious case of perma-grin and a skip in his step.  We knew what that meant and being Smallmouth Bass fanatics, we wanted details.  So we slid to the edge of our chairs and let the good times roll.  Here's what Knox shared with us... 

Asheville Fly Fishing Company - Smallmouth Bass

I touched down in Toronto just past mid-night on June 18th. Coincidentally this date has a lot of meaning for me, but for this post the most important fact to keep in mind is that June 18 is the opening day for smallies in Ontario, something we don't appreciate here in the south. The plan was set a year before. Ben, a buddy that I had originally met on a flight to Portugal a few years ago, picked my girlfriend and I up at the airport. Once through customs we walked out the doors and immediately saw Ben waiting. Hugs and back slaps were exchanged and then we were off. After a non-stop 4 hour drive we arrived at our destination- a tiny, glacial lake 20 miles from the St Lawrence Seaway that Ben's family had a cottage on and that had no public access.

Asheville Fly Fishing Company - Smallmouth Bass
Asheville Fly Fishing Company

It was 4:15 and the sky was just turning grey. Rod, reel, and fly box had been stashed strategically on top of the food rations in the back of the car for easy retrieval, and withing 10 minutes of pulling into the drive we were in the Lund, cutting through the morning air with me standing at the bow, 8 wt in hand, fly line lying at my feet, a freshly tied yellow popping bug on the leader, and the unforgettable feeling you have just before doing something you'd been envisioning and anticipating for a long time. The outboard was silenced and the boat went into a quiet glide. Before Ben even had time to point out a rocky reef I threw my first cast. One pop. Two pops. Pause. Rod tip just over the water. Boom. Big eat and even bigger fish. That first fish of the trip came just as the warm colors of morning bled across the horizon. There were countless fish caught on that trip, but that first fish, and that first morning in Canada, blending with all of the emotions of the past year and a half, was one of the most powerful moments of my life. I said a silent "thank you" to no one in particular, and for a few moments, even with my hands still wet and fishy, forgot about the fishing. I took in the lake and the light, looked at my buddy, and smiled. He knowingly smiled back, and without a word and with eye brows raised, pointed to a rise ring behind me.  

Read more about Knox Campbell here

 

FISHING REPORT:   Smallmouth Bass in Asheville

The Smallmouth Bass fishing has been above average this year.  Currently we are getting rain and cooler temperatures and the fish are happy.  Guided trips have been producing trophy fish on the fly and spin tackle.   We target these fish by Drift Boat and Raft and offer all inclusive full day and half day trips.  Here's one from last week...

Asheville Fly Fishing Company - Smallmouth Bass

BOOK A TRIP BY MAKING A RESERVATION IN ADVANCE:  (828) 779-9008 

Spring Fishing is on!

We've been busy guiding and making memories on the rivers of East Tennessee and Western North Carolina.  Spring fishing has been great so far and its just getting started.

Thanks to all our recent guests for making our jobs fun!

Here's a few pictures from this weeks guided trips. 


Book a Trip: (828) 779-9008
www.AshevilleFlyFishingCo.com

Fishing Report: South Holston River

The South Holston River has gained a reputation for being among the best Wild Brown Trout fisheries in the Southeast United States.   With an average of 8,000 trout per mile, 20 miles of fishable water sustaining 85% wild browns, we can attest to its greatness.  Being a Tailwater, where the water level is controlled by a dam, it is a year round fishery offering world class fly fishing with various opportunities.  It's limestone riverbed and consistent water temperature provide excellent conditions for trout to thrive.  The “Soho” is no doubt a “Brown Trout Factory.”   We would love the opportunity to guide you to a great experience on the South Holston River!   

FISHING REPORT:

Recent fly fishing trips on the South Holston River have been very productive.  With the spawning sections opening up as of February 1, 2016, the fish haven’t seen the normal fishing pressure.  In turn, fish have been aggressive towards streamers on low pressure, cloudy days.  Streamer colors have varied based on sunlight and water clarity.  The following formula is a good place to start:

  • Cloudy Skies / Clear Water = Natural Colors
  • Cloudy Skies / Dingy Water = Black, Grey, Purple
  • Sunny Skies / Clear Water = Natural Colors, Bright Colors
  • Sunny Skies / Dingy Water = Florescent and Bright Colors

In addition, use streamers in darker colors in the winter and early months of the year and as the water warms graduate to the lighter-colors.  Use florescent and bright colors in muddy and dingy water, and lighter colors in clear and warmer waters.

With all the snowmelt, rain and demand for electricity, the Dam generators have been running 24/7.  During these periods, the fish acclimate to high water holding spots and the bigger Wild Brown Trout come out to play.

On high pressure days with abundant sun, nymphs, midges and soft hackles are getting the job done.  As Spring and warmer temperatures approach, dry fly fishing will get better.  Until then, warmer days reaching 60+ degrees will produce some great Blue Winged Olive hatches and rising fish.

Because the South Holston River’s levels fluctuate depending on generation, we recommend two days on this river to get the best conditions and maximize your experience.  We offer all inclusive guided fishing trips and various lodging options to accommodate you best.    

Tight Lines!

We look forward to getting on the water with you!

 

Asheville Fly Fishing Company, LLC

BOOK A TRIP:  (828) 779-9008

Photography: Copyright 2016 Galen Kipar

2015 Summer Fishing Video with Asheville Fly Fishing Company

Happy 4th of July!   We are looking forward to watermelon, fireworks, homemade peach ice cream and good days on the water.  Hope everyone has a great holiday weekend!