Don’t look now but things are really beginning to come alive in and around East Tennessee and it appears that may coincide with changes in flows on most of TVA’s area tailwaters. As I type, a cold front is approaching from the West. While it may bring with it a little bit of precipitation the real affect will come from the drop in temperatures. Those cooler temps may forestall the advent of lights out fishing, the effect shouldn’t last too long.
Flows in the national park are near their normal range for this time of year and fishing has been good to excellent depending on when and where you go. With the advent of cooler temps, you would be well served to delay your mountain angling till the later parts of the day when the sun has had the opportunity to warm the water. Reports coming in are mentioning both March Browns and Yellow Sally’s. While anglers are utilizing a dry dropper combo, most fish are being brought to hand via the dropper.
Tailwater fishing should soon be back in the cards. The Clinch was running only on generator today from eight till five. Early reports from the water were a little lackluster but that should improve as flows stabilize and the water has a chance to warm up just a tad. Likewise, TVA has been dropping flows on the Holston and French Broad rivers. It remains to be seen how much low water we will get for the weekend, but things look promising, particularly on the Holston and Clinch.
The lower end of the French Broad should be holding good numbers of white bass and skip jacks if you need to put some numbers on the board after a long, lonesome winter. Lowland freestones are also beginning to produce good numbers of small mouth. All signs are pointing to what could be the best weekend of fishing in 2021. Get out there and have fun!