September Journal

30 Sept 2011

This will be the last entry for the month of September, I know that the sadness is overwhelming, however, because of all the popular demand, I shall be starting an October Journal, after my next trip.

You may have noticed no photo, well, that doesn’t necessarily mean no fish, it may mean, no sense. Today I headed out for just a couple of hours, going against my better judgment. The wind was blowing pretty hard, the temperature was nice, but I just knew that it was going to be tough. Oh well, a fisherman fears nothing, well, he doesn’t fear mildly high winds.

Launched behind the airport on Boone Lake, thought I would venture out to point 9. Figured the shad would be up, however, so was the chop on the water, so I headed to Candy Creek. Went toward the back, but not quite and did pretty well. Most of the shad were about medium size, but had a couple of nice ones. My first cast however guaranteed me a day of no skunk. I caught 6 white bass in the net. Now they were about 8-10 inches and I threw them back in and caught the shad.

I then headed to point 9, fished the deeper water first. I saw a tree in the water, put out my down line, 15 ft, threw out a flat line (no weight), then baited my flipping rod. Tossed it toward the down tree, got a hit. I jerked, began reeling it in and right as it got to the boat, it got off, about a 12 inch smallmouth. Here I go, start thinking great day ahead, caught 6 little white bass and almost boated a smalljaw and I haven’t been here 30 minutes. So I troll along the bank and come up with nothing.

As I get halfway down the bank, I begin to troll toward the island, there should be a smallie or something there. As I enter into about 25′ of water, all the sudden the Abu Garcia begins to run out line, it has an indicator on it. I put my flipping rod in a rod holder, set the hook, fight on. As I am battling this monster striper, I hear my saltwater line, which had the large shad, start having line pulled. It was 10′ deep, I ran to it, set the hook, but the fish was gone, back to the battle. Had there been another one with me, we would have doubled.

Well I got this monster striper in the boat, weighed it, thought my scales were off, but they weren’t, this fish went 4 lbs, 13 oz. Got excited to get back in the water, threw the fish in and then said shucks, I forgot the photo.

Well, I fished up and down and back and forth, round and round and sideways. I battled the winds to the point that the Schnauzer went behind the steering wheel for a break. The remainder of the day nothing. I left after a total of about 2.5 hours, wind wore me out.

September was a pretty good month. There weren’t many large fish caught, maybe none, can’t remember and too lazy to read the entire journal, but had a great time. See you in October, God bless and good fishing.


       24 Sept. 2011

Went out of town this weekend, got the opportunity to stay in Sevierville, Wilderness Lodge and thought I would be able to locate a few fish. When talking with the fly fishing department at the Bass Pro, trying to get some tips, he said a trout tournament would be in town. Well this changed my approach, thought I would get up, visit the Orvis shop and inquire.

Well Sat. morning, I arose out of the bed, ate, deleted some spam from the forum. I may have to just get rid of the forum if anglers don’t use it, I hate to give the spammers a place to do there business. Anyway, spoke with wife a bit and heading off fishing. When I arrived at the Orvis shop, they weren’t open, didn’t open till 10am, well I didn’t have long, I like spending time with the family, fishing takes a back seat, so I headed about a block away on the Pigeon River.

I had heard of some small mouth, figured they were closer to the French Broad, but so some little bitty flips on the water. Tied a fly and here I went. The night before I tied up a green weenie, then thought, well, I reckon I could tie a brown one to look like a night crawler, and whipped out a pheasant tail. As I began fishing and trying all my flies on the line, I finally got bit, when I set the hook, that fish went flying like a streamer. Now understand I bass fish alot, but I didn’t set the hook that hard, just lifted the rod tip. This monster would have fit into a sardine can, so I just kept on a fishing. Got a few hits with the brown weenie, I guess that is what it is called, then headed down stream. 

Found a good spot and there is where it all came together. I put on a blue wing olive cause I saw a fly about that size that look near that color, or at least the color of the one I had. I am not the best person at tying a fly. I found the right fly, I found the right spot and the slaying commenced, in the next half hour I dominated the Pigeon River, looked around to see if a crowd was forming. I pulled in around 7-8, so many I stopped photographing.

I had thought I was being smart by moving the camera close thus increasing the appearance of the fish size, however, due to my hand and for that matter the fly in the photo, one could tell that they were not wall hangers. However, I shut it down, felt real good about entering into a new water and absolutely coming out on top. Headed back to the family and spent the rest of the day bonding.

I am just gonna say the photos speak for themselves. I am thinking that a fly rod may be more fun at catching bait than my cast net. Log that one into the memory bank.   


 18 Sept 2011

Yesterday while waiting for the Vols to start the football game I tied up a couple of new flies. Tellico that was what I looked up on the web and attempted to tie up. So after church, grab a bite to eat, get ready and off to the river. We head up a little above Webb’s bridge, around the power lines and good times are ahead. As we get out there, I see multiple breaks on the water. Start off with my sulfur and a tellico, and I get nothing. However, I do discover something, I found out that I no longer have a seam that is waterproof in my waders. This will make the winter fishing quite chilly.

So I fish and fish and throw about everything I have at the trout. I discover that my freshly tied nymphs sometimes float better than my dry flies till I get them drenched. I did get about three hits, but no pattern is forming. As I continue to wade, I meet up with the father-in-law. He has missed quite a few and tells me its a sulfur.

So I put one on and start fishing in his little honey hole, it was not but a few minutes and there it is, the beautiful little trout above. I tried to video a little of it, if it turned out I will add it to the site. I remove the fly, take the picture then throw it back. I have no idea why it has the hole it has under the jaw, any ideas tell me in the forum.

I get one more hit, but nothing. Father-in-law catches one, misses quite a few more, but for the day we got two nice ones. I only got about two knots in my line due to my casting, didn’t fall any, and stayed cool due to water entering in through the waders. All and all, great day fishing, God bless.


16 Sept 2011

I will post photos throughout this section, or you can just go to the gallery on Boone Lake. This particular photo shows all of my wonderful photography skills at work. If you look close you can see a fish in that net, but the big part is my finger, all photos with phone, I need to get a better shot. Anyway, today it was cold, at least for the weather we have been having. I took vacation, woke up, got the kids off to school with help and thought, why did I not go to work. It was chilly and the wind was blowing, but no way I am wasting vacation. I piddle with the website, hoping the sun will come out and about 8:30 time to go.

The water has been dropping, but the shad catching at Bluff City was pretty easy. I headed up river a piece, then chose to flip a few at the train trussels and nothing. Not going up to the river, not sure I know the area good enough when the water has dropped so I head toward rainbow bridge. I am going to post a video of the boat ride if you have never seen Boone before. I finally decided to fish around the Davis Marina area. I have one line down, one line trailing with no weight, and I am flipping, more like casting. Fortunately the wind was blowing pretty good so baiting up was a breeze keeping the boat off the bank and out of trouble. As I head toward the little point, I get one hit, it was quick and with my flipping, so I come back through.

Began to think after the first hour or more that I was going to get home early today, but then boom, I see one hitting at the top of the water about where my shad should be. Can’t see the shad from the chop on the water. I place flipping rod in rod holder, grab other one, tighten the line and there is a smallmouth on it. I get it in the boat, look at my flipping rod and it is bent over. Get this one in real quick and I had me a double, thus the photo.

 They may not look too big, but this is 5 lbs and 7 oz worth of smallmouth bass right here. So I am getting excited, folks it really don’t take much.  Remaining photos at end, but fighting the wind, I end up getting bit by a large mouth. This one goes about 2.6 lbs and then another smallie at 2.7 lbs. I get in another bass, it is the one in the other photo with the finger, it was a little over 2 lbs. My down line, about 15 feet, then gets bit, the shad was big and I set the hook. There must have been a crimp in the line cause it broke off the hook. The stripers were my intended target, but these bass have been fun.

I hook another large mouth which may have been the biggest I would have ever landed, but as it jumped and flipped, it threw the hook back at me. Everything began to die down a bit, getting close to getting out of school, or at least getting everything put up so I could get the youngens. I find another large shad, I fish it a bit, thinking it is time to go, as I reel in the slack I feel something, there it is, the big one. Now this may not be big to you, but when I saw that thing it was one of those whoa Nelly moments. I grabbed the net, grabbed the rod, tried to net him 3 times then finally, in the boat. This bad boy weighed in at a whopping 6 lbs and 6 oz. That may seem small to you but I thought the lake dropped a foot when I got him in the boat, he was a monster. Let me just say, there wasn’t as many funny things happen as usual, but this is why I keep going. Every once in a while you can get on those things. Please let me know when they allow the use of live shad in tournament fishing. Enjoy the photos:





   10 Sept 2011

Last week smoked for the first time in a very long time. So I have been wanting to do some more smoking all week. Well this morning was the morning, when I got up checked the generating schedule, tied up a couple of flies and headed toward the SOHO. I had tasted years ago someone who had smoked some trout and since we got the smoker up and running last week, I thought I would give it a whirl, smoking as we speak and it smells great.

Went out and it was crowded as the weekend should be. Now I never keep fish, I can’t tell you the last time that I have kept a fish. I had searched all over for a stringer and finally found one, had never been used, still wound tight. Got out at the river, put on the waders and headed down stream. When I got there, I realized that I had forgotten the stringer, so I head back. Wondering as I walk past everyone again if they are thinking I am ignorant, well, they would not be the first. Anyway, there was a feller where I was going to fish anyhow, so I head a little upstream from the bridge. Fish are appearing everywhere so I throw out a lot of different things. At this point I could tell you what they are not hitting, so I head back to some current. I think the current hides some of the errors in my flies.

I get down there and go to the little honey hole I used to have. There are trout everywhere, even got some video footage of them if you want to check it out, follow the river tab. I have not gotten a hit, I have thrown everything I could find, a midge, pheasant tail, prince, sulfur, and to my disappointment, no bite I switch back to the size 20 sulfur and a pheasant tail trailer. I was going to head upstream. By the way, there was a feller right below me that was doing well, this is not unusual, I spend more time watching others catch than actually catching.

Well as I start to head toward the bank I throw one out, boom, caught the small one in the photo. Man this is great, only took about 10 minutes to figure out how to get him on the stringer, remove the knot that he caused with the stringer, and to unwrap fishing line from around my leg. This trout better taste good. I am now excited, so I throw over there again. Low and behold after a couple of cast there it was. Now the photo don’t do it justice, this was a nice little trout, not a wall hanger and the river did not drop any when I pulled it out, but it was a nice little fish. Spend another 10 or so minutes trying to get it on the stringer and remove all knots again, really it needs to taste good, I may never keep another.

I hear the siren, and decided these two would be enough, I could stop fishing. As I get out, I have to remove one more tangle from a poor cast and head out pretty content. Cleaned those things up, got the smoker smokin’, and getting read to get up and go see if its ready. If you are curious as to how it taste, well, I will put it somewhere, check under catch all in the forum, if its good, I will put it under recipes. God bless and good fishing.

p.s. It was delicious


    05 Sept 2011

 Well the weather forecast is about 6-10″ of rain between Monday to Wednesday, and it is a holiday so guess what, time hit the water. I choose not to get in the boat, if lightning comes I can get out of the river much quicker. Last night whipped out about 3 flies, a sulfur, a pheasant tail, and a black midge. The excitement is flowing, the rain is slowing, and I head out to South Holston.

Pretty certain I will be able to fish anywhere I like cause certainly there aren’t too many folks that would fish in this weather. When we get there, I was suprised, many folks are fishing and more are coming. Head down the path and you can see the photo above. This was a snake that I stepped across without noticing. Considered grabbing it by the tail and saying he is grumpy, but the river was calling.

As I start to walk across, I had tied on my pheasant tail, tossed it out a bit while I am walking across and boom get a hit. Missed it, but got my attention on not just wading, but paying attention to my line. Flipped it out again, took a few steps and take a gander at the photo above, that’s right, not yet where I am going to fish and I have a photo.

This should have been a sign, I cast a while then notice a few sulfurs coming off, in between rain showers. I switch to a sulfur and start casting, this is turning into casting practice. Finally get one hit, but missed the trout. After another while of practicing, I attempt to switch to my midge. I had left some wire in the eyelit (excuse the spelling), but no luck, I tried for 5 minutes and just could not get the line through the hole. I eventually move up the river. I had a few more hits, but not able to get anything caught.

I think there was one dry spot on my, however, I was unable to locate it. Saturated but a good day fishing. If it rains or not, try to get out to South Holston River, there is some mighty fine fishing there, even for amateurs like me, good fishing and God bless.


    03 Sept 2011

Saturday means boat traffic, Labor Day Weekend means lots of boat traffic, therefore it is time to knock the dust off the fly rod and head to the river. Now really like the fly fishing, however, with South Holston, sometimes called SOHO, being such an excellent tailwater, people come from all over, I typically like fly fishing this in the cooler months. Nonetheless, I head to the garage, just hoping that I have some flies tied, hoping I have everything I need and gather stuff together.

To save the embarrasment of people watching me trying to put on my neoprened waders, I decide to go ahead and put them on here. I reach down into the leg and reverse them. The reason I must do this is the huge hole I have in the waders, they leaked real bad, consider going waderless, but I put them on and head to the river. Generating starts at noon so we go to the lower portion, takes about 3-4 hours for the water to arrive here. I don’t have a lot of confidence, but then again, going fishing, hoping for catching.

I am starting with a pheasant tail nymph, I have just done ok on that thing and kinda of the mindset, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. So I start to fish a bit, pretty proud of myself, first bunch of cast, no hang ups, then I hook one. The fight is now on baby let the battle begin. As I am pulling it in, I grab the video camera, try to film just to put something on the site, the video will take me a while to develop here. Pull it up, take the photo, and it was about the size of a sardine. Some may laugh, but hey, I caught me a fish on a fly I tied and it was a blast. I miss a couple more then forget to check the back blast area and lose my fly. Start heading down river, and begin to search for another fly. You are probably asking, why not another pheasant tail, well, if you saw the others, you wouldn’t ask, they looked awful, refer back to the flies I have tied.

Anyway I find a real deep hole that I must roll cast and start there. I finally get to trying the prince nymph, and boom, hook one. Grab video, film a second, pull it up, grab phone, snap photo. Now the phone camera does not show the actual size, this one was nice, probably 10″ or so. Release the trout and take a few breaths to relieve the excitement and begin again. Hook one more, then that is it. I threw everything in my arsenal. Streamers, crawdad, bluewing olive, midge, everything. I lost a lot of things. Found tree limbs, thick grass, cleaned a lot of leaves out of the river.

All and all, great day on the river, I only wrapped the line around my neck a couple of times. Only lost about 4 flies, caught two fish, missed two more. Right foot wet, but warm, did not fall or break anything and got some pictures to boot. If you get a chance, hit the SOHO, good fishing and God bless.



02 Sept. 2011

First off let me offer my apologies for the photos, offered up with an excuse. The photos were taken with my phone. The sun was out, could not see what it looked like, had lost my pliers, (had to find a spare) in a big hurry, and of course they are bigger than they appear. One of them is unweighed, one was over 2 lbs, don’t remember the ounces, and the other a hair over 3 lbs. Let me share my experience.

It is Friday before a 3 day weekend, I work half a day so I just decided to vacate. Journal hadn’t had an update, we are already into September and I know the 3 fans of this journal are dying to read another entry. I may be exagerated with the fan base, but hey if you are going to make up numbers, make up big ones.

Anyway, got up about 5, started getting ready and decided today that I would make some breakfast for the family. Bacon, egg, and cheese sandwiches all around as I see them all out the door. Take the girl to school and come back and head to the lake, Bluff City area. As a side note, I am working on getting some video footage on the website, this is appearing more difficult than I had anticipated, so check back and I will keep at it.

Threw cast net about 20 minutes and got about 12-14 shad, this took a little work, so I was feeling good about fish possibly biting, I head to the spot to catch the stripers. The water temp here is about 70 degrees and the water is pretty clear. I hit the hole with two passes and nothing. I decide to head down river. There are train columns in tow spots, the one they use and the old one, and there is a tree down that I like to flip at just in case. There are small fish in various spots, not sure if they are trout or shad, or a combo.

As I troll to the used train columns, I am flipping my shad, a brown trout comes up after it. That bad boy had to weigh near 5 lbs, maybe more, it was a whopper. However, he never took the shad, just came to get my heart racing. This is good, means I will not have to do any cardio today. Troll on down to the tree, flip there a while, my balloon line gets excited a few times, but nothing.

I get to the old train columns and I flip right next to the wall. The shad comes to the surface after diving like he was in the Olympics and on his tale is three bass. They all appear to be a nice size and boom, there is the first photo. This is when I realized I cannot find my pliers, dig around, keep him out of the water way too long, but get him in, he lives and I finally have something for the journal.

So I start to hang around this train column and forget about my balloon line, this is foreshadowing. I continue to flip, boom a nice one gets on, I should have let him take some more, cause I did not get a good hook set, he got loose. I miss another and another, so I try the other side of the columns. Boom huge swirl, but a huge miss. I finally get one to the boat, this is the biggest of the day, he was probably about 4 lbs, I began to think, hey you may enter a tournament one day, we can all dream, so I thought I would just flip him up in the boat like they do on tv, but when I flipped, the idea flopped, he got off.

I catch one more on this columns, fish #2, then down to one last shad. I head to the other trussel, throw in once and bam, fish on, Mr. Smalljaw was coming to the boat.

The time was now about 11, I was out of bait. The plumbing at the house needed to be repaired and I had a great morning. So I packed it up and headed home. I am still confused with the Stripers, they have moved and I don’t know where. Not sure if the water was too clear, certainly not too cold, but I am going to have to go in search of which means, probably be some days of no catching, however, I do tend to do more fishing than catching anyway. God bless and good fishing.