The weekend looks to be hot, hot, hot so there is no better place to be than on the water. Hot weather also means that TVA will probably have the generators running for the later part of the day on both Saturday and Sunday due to peak power demand. At present, however, the generation schedules on all of the Valley's main rivers (Douglas, Cherokee, and Norris) look favorable for good flows early in the day when fishing is most likely to be good.
The Holston River below Cherokee Dam is still maintaining temperatures cool enough for the trout to remain comfortable but that situation cannot hold too much longer. Early morning wading opportunities abound and my suggestion is to be on the river at first light and fish until about the middle part of the day when the fishing falls off significantly. Most of the major hatches have moved on but there is still a spattering of caddis and sulfurs coming off in the morning before the flows catch up. Your best bet will be subsurface but I would not hesitate to give a terrestrial or two a try as my indicator fly above a nymph. There is an abundance of beetle activity in the Valley at present and the fish are as aware of that as I am. Top water action on the middle and lower sections of the Holston has started to get hot as well so popper fishing for small mouth bass best be on your list of activities to try!
If you are headed to the Clinch on Saturday don't forget that the Big Clinch River Clean Up is going on in the morning. To accommodate the volunteers, who are pulling all manner of trash from the river, TVA will have the generators off until one in the afternoon on Saturday. The normal recreation schedule will return on Sunday. From all accounts, the lower and middle portion of the river has been fishing better than the upper. Standard bugs (bh pheasant tails and midges) are the flies of choice with little to no surface activity present with this heat.
The mountains are suffering from hot and low water. What a contrast to the high water and cool temperatures we had early in the spring and summer. You can find comfortable water temperatures in the higher elevations so if you are going to the mountains this weekend go early and go high!
If you are looking for something fun to do next weekend don't forget that the 3 Rivers Carp Cup is being held on Saturday, July 29th!