When you are fishing a tailwater like the South Holston or Watauga and the surface is covered with midges and you want to have a successful day. Here are a few of my best producing midge patterns during the winter. I hope this information will help you have a more productive day on the water.
Many of you while floating with me have watched me do this knot. Just wanted to post this as a refresher as we get closer to those times when we all get back on the water more often.
We have secured a good entry and exit set of ramps on the Nolichucky River. This river offers you the chance to float and wade for smallmouth and musky. We also have the ability for you to stay in a great cabin right on the river at our exit ramp. Check out the pictures of the cabin, don’t forget right now is prime musky hunting time and we have the winter pricing in effect so lets go chase some toothy critters.
Don’t forget the Kentuckiana Fly Fishing Show this coming Saturday January 26th. I will be there, stop by the booth and watch me tie some South Holston and Watauga Guide Special flies. I will also have the TFO Tenkara rod with me so you can learn more about rigging or casting techniques.
When looking at outdoor gear for your fly-fishing, canoeing, wading/hiking outings, what is on your list of standards that this equipment must have for you to look at these products and then purchase them? As a fly fishing guide I look at the same attributes you do, only I have to make sure that these same criteria are met more aggressively.
We fly fishing guides expose the products we use to many days of hard, often abusive use and if the product is not well designed it won’t last long. There is one thing I won’t tolerate, that is a piece of equipment that lets me down, especially on a guided trip. This is why I choose the companies products I use very carefully. I will purchase these products from a local fly shop or other outdoor equipment company and then spend a good amount of time testing and literally trying to make it fail. Then if it can stand up to my and my fellow guides abuse, then I bring it into my guiding business for my clients to use.
That is one of the reasons I choose Chota Outdoor Gear Company for my wader, boots and rain gear. They are outdoorsmen designing products for you to use in your outdoor activities. Not only do they design, build and sell them, they use it themselves. The owner Frank Bryant personally tests each and every piece they design to ensure it will be what you need in your outdoor gear. I have been using their products for over three years in my guiding business and have not had one failure on any product. My customers talk about the many great features of the Chota products. The customers who return from year to year and wear the same waders and boots, also the occasional rain jacket, and they talk about well they hold up.
So if you are looking for the best gear for you’re for outdoor experiences check out Chota Outdoor Gear. You will not be disappointed, because I know I’m not.
Be sure to come to the WNC Fly Fishing Expo in Asheville, North Caroline this coming weekend November 3rd and 4th. Chota Outdoor Gear will be there displaying all their new products for 2013 as well as the great products already out there. The owners and I will be working the booth this weekend. Be sure to stop by and talk withus. We will be glad to answer all the questions you have about the products, and we can also talk some fishing, canoeing or hike if you like.
I will be doing casting demonstrations on the casting pond during the weekend using the new Temple Fork Outfitters Tenkara rods. I will be teaching the different casting techniques and giving you tips on how to use these rods. This new(old) type of fishing has been around for years in Japan but just started being introduced in the USA a couple of years ago. Be sure to come watch the casting demos, I will also be tying some Tenkara flies and building level line systems in the A & S Outfitters or Chota booths during the weekend. See ya there!!!
I received the new rod last week and after some lawn casting to get the level lines and leaders figured out it was off on it’s first guided Tenkara trip. The trip was with Mr. Steve Hanna and he is wanting to learn all he can about Tenkara style fishing. He has studied and read all available material and now it was time to put some rods in his hand and go fishing.
We tested several rod manufacturers against each other and came up with a couple that Steve really liked. He has spent some time with a western style rod in his hand so doing a rod review was good for him. Here is a video of the new Temple Fork Outfitters Soft Hackle Tenkara rod that was introduced at the IFTD Show in Reno, Nevada last week.
The folks at Tenple Fork Outfitters have decided to bring out their line of Tenkara style rods. I just received the first rod from the folks in Dallas. They will be doing a press release at the Fly Tackle Dealers Show in Reno, Nevada next week, so you are getting this news before the rest of the folks. I am going to be fishing this new rod over the weekend and doing some reviews over the next few weeks. Out of the package is feels great and will be a great Watauga and South Holston Tenkara rod.
Here it is in the package, check back on Monday to see the rod and how it performs.
Tomorrow I am headed out to test fish a new to me high mountain lake that has northern pike (30 inch minimum size) and bruiser largemouth (18 inch munimum). It is srping feed and has some serious lilly pad areas on the upper end of the lake. Got the bite leaders installed on the lines and big articulated flies are tuned and ready. Reports to follow!!!!
The fishing is awesome. The past week has been spent working with and teaching folks some new ways to fish the tailwaters and rivers of East Tennessee. From custom built bamboo to lengthy low line weight all the way to Tenkara rods, the South Holston and Watauga Tailwaters are giving us many options. The Holston Proper is in a post spawn feeding frenzy and the big boys are HUNGRY!!!!.
The sulphurs and blackfly adults are coming off heavy on the South Holston, we are using parachute sulphurs when the hatch is in full swing and when you see the bulging rises add a size 22 Rainbow Warrior hung about ten inches off the bend of the hook. The Watauga has had the cicadas singing their mating song along the river and the browns really seem to like them when they fall out of the trees, a few pig rainbows also wanted to gorge themselves on them as well.
The post-spawn feeding frenzy is in full swing on the Holston Proper. They spent a couple of weeks recuperating and now they are hungry. The bite has been on minnow and crawdad imitating streamers, we are getting them all throughout the water column. Mr. Bill “Nick” Boyd of the “Dubbing Teasers”, you can watch him tie at Troutfest as well as during the Fly Tiers Weekends at Little River Outfitters Fly Shop. Here he is holding is TWRA Angler Recognition 22″ smallmouth bass.
Nick said the big ones are nice, but it doesn’t matter the size its the tug that matters. The other member of the “Dubbing Teasers” that was along on the trip, Wendy, was enjoying fishing with her Walter Babb custom built bamboo rod as well as what she called “Tourist Mode”
Be sure to tune in again when we will be covering some leader techniques and fly selections for Tenkara fishing in East Tennessee.
Here we are fishing Wilson Creek Delayed Harvest with the Tenkara rods. We were using the Ito and Amago rods with level fluorocarbon leaders ending at a 2 pound tippet. The nymphs were the best flies to have on, a heavy Caddis Czech style nymph was the bottom fly with a brown scud on the dropper. Wilson Creek is some beautiful water and plenty of rainbows and brook trout were caught. If you want to try your hand at Tenkara Style fishing, give me a call.
I am sure many of you are saying do I need another rod in my arsenal, yes you do. I have taken up the Tenkara Style of fishing and it sure is fun. Simplicity is the best way to describe this style of fishing. All you need is a good graphite rod from one of the Tenkara USA, I use the Iwana and Ito rods, various lengths of 8 to 20 pound fluorocarbon material for the base of the leader, 2 and 4 pound fluorocarbon fishing line for the finishing leader, and some 2mm tippet rings. Mount the leader base to the rod via the Girth Hitch connection, a 6 to 8 foot section is good. Add some 4 pound fluoro by loop to loop to the base, tie on a tippet ring with a Davy Knot. Now add to sections of the 2 pound fluoro to the tippet ring, one about 3 foot long and another about 6 foot long with Davy Knot’s. On the shorter tippet tie on a smaller fly of your choice, I prefer a Tenkara style soft hackle. On the longer tippet tie on a heavy Czech style nymph for getting things to the bottom quickly. This system works well in slow deep pools as well as shallow fast riffles. The possibilities are endless on how you can fish with Tenkara.
For dry fly fishing you will need a furled leader in a 10 foot length, add about 3 to 5 feet of 2 pound fluoro tippet with a loop to loop connection and any dry fly of your choice. With all the length on these rods it makes high sticking very easy.
One more thought on Tenkara style fishing. When your lines are freezing in your guides on those cold weather trips, no problem when using a Tenkara rod. Things that make you go hmmmmm!!
Another memory filled day on the Watauga Tailwater, got four browns from one run, all in the 17 to 21 inch range and a bruiser of a rainbow right at 20 inches in the Caddis Riffle. Taught the clients to use several new techniques today, Tenkara, Czech Nymphing, and Twitching. If you want to learn how to fish these techniques and give yourself a shot at one of these trophy fish, give me a call.
Lets get you out there where the fishing is as hot as the weather!!!