This week we had great fun in the Smokies fishing Straight Fork and the Oconaluftee River (The Luftee). In fact, we’ve never caught so many brown trout in such a short time span. We hit the water early, and overall, the fish struck the Red Squirmy Worm and shunned the pink one. They also smacked terrestrials, especially beetles, ants and hoppers.
One of the Luftee’s hidden gems is Kephart Prong, a tributary where water temps remained in the low-60s. The bows and browns couldn’t stop kissing our sexy dry-dropper—a Red Wulff dry fly with an Olive Midge (#20) underneath. But we owe some of our good fortune to Horace Kephart, the stream’s namesake and an early advocate for the park. Unfortunately, Mr. Kephart died before his dream of a national park came to fruition.
This summer weekend should be just right for fishing. Peak daytime temperatures are expected in the low- to mid-80s, but start early while the water’s cool. Also, water levels have seen a slight drop, so walk softly and wear neutral colors.
Have wonderful weekends!