What would be Fat Tuesday in most parts of the country that celebrates Mardi Gras , we have coined “Trout Tuesday”.
So on Trout Tuesday we guided a father and son, Jason and Jay, from Louisiana. We Floated the Tuckasegee River Delayed Harvest Section which is part of the WNC Fly Fishing Trail near Dillsboro and Sylva NC. Jason took advantage of the great deal with our Float Trip Special. What a great day we had! These guys were easily some of the nicest folks we’ve had the pleasure of fishing with!
The morning started off cold, with a light dusting of what the old timers used to call Hominy Snow, which covered our fishing rig and cataraft. You never know what your are going to get with a Winter in the Smoky Mountains. The day remained cloudy but warmed up to around 50 degrees. The water levels in the Tuckasegee River were low to start the morning off, with the generation flows from the upstream powerhouse reaching us around noon. The fishing was good and we had already boated several nice trout by the time the warmer water from the powerhouses reached us. Once the higher and warmer flows hit us, the fishing really turned on and we finished out the day cataching and releasing many Brook, Brown, and Rainbow Trout. 8 yr old Jay managed to capture a Grand Slam which is a Rainbow, Brown and Brook Trout. While a Brook Trout eluded his dad Jason the entire day, Jason was on fire catching rainbow trout. He caught several nice fish some of which pushed 16 inches. On two occasions Jason caught wild Rainbow Trout who were born in the Tuckasegee River. This just goes to show that the health of the Tuckasegee River is alive and well, and with the recent removal of the old crumbling Dillsboro Dam has opened passageway to many spawning wild trout who might have otherwise never have been able to travel upstream and complete their spawning runs.
In all, Trout Tuesday was a great day, and in non traditional Mardis Gras fashion, our gluttenous day of catching many trout on Fat Tuesday will NOT be follow by giving up any Fly Fishing vises that we may, or may not have. Bring on the flies and fish, its the Carnival Season!