September Journal 2017









15 & 17 September 2017

Friday came and a friend from work called, said he was going fly fishing and asked me to meet him there. I informed him that I thought I was supposed to go out with the daughter. Well for some reason, she preferred to go with her friend to Steele Creek instead of hanging out with me. To be honest, I was not shocked, she is 18 and they can go catch bluegill. So I headed to the South Holston River to meet up with my pal.

Last weekend up here, I had noticed that the fish hit my strike indicator (mine looks just like a bobber), so I started off with an red egg. Some fly fisherman won’t use these patterns, but I sure will as they are easy to tie and work pretty well the right time of the year. I met up with Derek who had caught one and started fishing. I noticed that my egg was not getting down and looked similar to a strike indicator, so I took it off and put on a squirmy wormy (red).

This appeared to do the trick as I landed three and missed multitudes in a fairly short amount of time. I didn’t bring a net so I only got one picture, but it is a bad pic so that should balance it out. We fished a bit, then chewed the fat a while as he no longer works in my area. Then time to go home and eat. Let me say I will just skip the Saturday conversation as the Tennessee Florida game did not go the way I had hoped, however, since I’m not the one that has worked hard all year to prepare for a game, I’ll just enjoy the next one and cheer for the Vols.

My daughter had said she would like to go in the boat on Sunday afternoon, so we got her ready and headed out. I dropped her off and she pulled the boat up, when I got down there she said, the shad are flipping right over here. I told her she should throw and I’ll get the bait tank ready. She put water in one of the live wells and began throwing. You would have thought she had done this for years, net opened beautifully and shad were being caught. We had to throw a bunch back on her last cast as there were a load of shad.

We strapped in and headed down the lake a piece. A few boats were out and as we hit a wave, the daughter got to enjoy a nice bath with shad water from the bait tank. I laughed in my dry spot to the right, it was starting off well.

We set out lines and made a pass up and down my honey hole. It appeared that nothing was interested in what we had to offer. I asked her if she had ever seen her whopper plopper on the water, she said no. So I said, let me show you and I can throw it a mile (that’s an exaggeration but a long way it doth fly). I got it ready, and set off to you know demonstrate my plug launching abilities, snap, the line broke, the plug was 10 yards away and I was left with the opportunity to put my line back through the guides. We had a good laugh over that, it truly was a sight. It wasn’t long till she said we should just bass fish. We headed over to another spot and gave it a go, putting a flat line behind the boat.

We fished a bank and she was whipping me now 2-1. These were the little rock bass (that’s what I’ve always called them) and they seemed to be all that was hitting. We agreed to head down to another honey hole. We zipped to the spot and I was down by one, we fished a good bit and then finally, I slayed another 5 incher (I am probably being generous with the length). The score was tied 2-2 and over the next thirty minutes, that did not change one bit. We decided to head home with a tie.

I can’t tell you what they are hitting on Boone, but I can tell you that the Ned Rig did not do much for us, but nor did live bait. My thinking is that location may have something to do with that. However, we may not have slayed them, but we sure had a good time. We picked, talked, picked a bit more. She made fun of me, more than once, and we just had a good time on the water. It’s always good to remember that it’s called fishing and if you catch, well, that’s just a little bonus on top of a good time. Have a great week and God bless.



The First Week of September

My apologies before hand for the length, I’ve been on vacation and been on a few short trips. Funny thing is that I have had less time to write anything up on vacation, but rest assured, I do not miss the real job.

I finished the 8 wt Tennesseee Vols themed fly rod, and I like it. I made a mistake and thought I was buying sinking tip line when it appears that it is not very good at sinking, excitement tends to have me purchasing things that I probably should not.

Anyway, I made a couple of trips to the river initially, this was built for striper fishing, but I was just unable to get the boat out for a couple of days and headed to the river. Using a streamer, which I never do, I caught a few trout, only one photo was taken. They were not very big and when I set the hook on one, it skipped across the surface 5-6′, yep, a bit more powerful than my 5 wt.

I headed to the lake on the 6th and committed to the fly rod. This may have been a mistake as far as catching fish, but nonetheless, I did catch one. No striper or hybrid but my first on a fly rod out of the boat, not skunked yet. And on a side note, the Vols have not lost a football game since I’ve had this rod. I’m not saying that is the reason, but it is a fact.

A friend of mine had been under the weather but called when he got a bit better and said he’d take me out and show me how to throw some weighted line and we’d catch some hybrid. This friend of mine is Trey Taylor of Ridge 2 River Outfitters, His phone number is (423) 502-5011, I’d recommend hollering at him if you want to catch some nice striper or hybrid on Boone, He don’t post much on his facebook page, but give him a call.

Anyhow, he told me to never commit to a fly rod, use bait and have the fly rod ready. Initially, we had gotten a few hits, but didn’t hook up most, and had a couple break off, probably got me into some brush. Anyway, things picked up, now I have posted a few pics above, but that does not show how many fish we caught.

We had caught a few when I started throwing the fly rod, by the way he is a great instructor, great with kids. Anyway, I was tossing the fly rod and he hooked up on a down line. I cast out and began stripping, then the other down line took off, He had his close and I handed him the fly rod and started playing the fish, then a flat line took off, I sat the rod down, grabbed the flat line and he said, hey, I just hooked up on the fly rod, we had four fish on at one time. I think we landed them all and released, but let me tell you it was chaos for me at the time.

We ended up boating a lot of hybrid, not sure how many, but I still hadn’t accomplished one on the fly. I kept throwing and got a hit, but that was it, just a hit. He is continually catching fish as this is going on and I finally got a hit, I pulled, let the line go out and started on the reel, the fight was on and I was pumped. I fought it for about a minute or so and it got off. It was probably an operator error, but mercy I was pumped.

I continued casting then one started busting top water in my fly rod range. I got so excited that I couldn’t cast 10 feet in the next 2 minutes. It was hilarious, line flying everywhere, wrapping around stuff it hadn’t wrapped around all day, I stepped on it, and it had everything to do with I had gotten too excited to cast, hilarious.

Today is Friday, daughter working so I probably won’t go, but I had a ball. I do suggest to give Trey a call, especially if you have kids, he also does hunting trips. I learned a bunch and sorry folks, but I won’t say where he took me. Not sure it matters that much cause these fish move a lot. Anyway, hope everyone has a great weekend and if you see me out there with a white fly rod, stop by and say hey, I am thrilled with how the TN rod turned out, maybe you’ll like it enough to want one. If you do (shameless plug time) give me a call at 423-366-0556 or email