Caney Fork Trout Fly Fishing - Caney Fork Trout Guide

TrophyFishingTN.Com
Videos

Striper, Trout, Smallmouth, and Musky, guide trips in the Nashville area. Our home waters are Cumberland and Caney Fork River and our specialty is fly fishing for Trout and Stripers.

~Our tradition is that of the first man who sneaked away to the creek when the tribe did not really need fish~

Author Topic: The niche game....  (Read 2609 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

mrl0004

  • FishHead
  • *****
  • Posts: 235
  • Karma: +0/-0
The niche game....
« on: July 15, 2012, 02:47:38 PM »
Some people only care about targeting and catching large fish. A lot of people refuse to target smaller fish. Just about everyone refuses to climb, hike and bushwhack for small fish. However, to some people, that is their niche. My niche is targeting small beautiful fish in beautiful places. Brook trout in cold water and my new found warm water treasure, the red eye bass. When I learned that Alabama has brook trout-esque water, but contains redeye bass instead, I was sold. Plans were made, and I left Saturday morning at 4am for my destination.

I arrive in awe of this beauty in my home state that I had never seen before. I also am a little skeptical that I have to get down there on that river.


I get closer to where I will make the descent, and I am still dreading the hike down (not to mention my lack of though about the hike back out).


Well, after a quick 10 minutes or so of a knee-jarring, toe-jamming downhill hike, I arrive to the water. I put my rod together and start casting. It's roughly 7am at this point.


I concentrate on the current and after 3 seconds after my hopper hit the water, it disappeared.


A small, but beautiful redeye. This is what I came here for. Make a few more casts and drifts and I score again.


I'm starting to think it could be a banner day of catching. I climb around an obstacle in the river.


I find another promising stretch of water and get to work.






The work didn't stop once I made it to the water.
There was lots of climbing involved on the water not to mention the constant walking on basketball size boulders or skinny flat rocks that felt like standing on one of these coated in oil.


I kept working my way down....


I hit every little pocket of water, it was amazing at what tiny water held a little redeye sometimes...



My thumb showed the signs of early success...


I had worked up the the initial lookout point where I looked down at the river.


My legs already feel like jello and not only do I have to hike back through the stream, but then back up to the point. Oh well, that's a worry for later in the day...

I worked up to a really deep section that there was no way around in the water....


I had to hike out and go around it. I walked through lots of this...


And this....


Which was full of this...


I imagine I'll have a breakout in 4-5 days. I finally think I am past the deep part, but I have to somehow get back down to the river....


Back to work on the water...


First spotted bass I've ever caught, even though it's a runt....


Did I mention the scenery here is awesome?





The fishing seemed to taper off around 11am as the sun was out in full force. Also, these guys hit before anything else could anyways...


I figure it's time to hike back and out, eat some lunch, re-hydrate and try somewhere else. By this point, I feel how my fly looks...


That hike out was brutal. It let me know exactly how bad out of shape I am, but I would still do it again tomorrow. In the meantime I decide to do some sight seeing, got to see the falls.....


This little guy was down there with a committee of panfish around him....


I made it to my next spot, which was more up in the mountain. Oh good, another hike down into an unknown.....


Caught one small jewel out of the starting gate...


This flow was even more brutal to hike around and in....


I didn't last but a couple more hours and I was done. No more fish except lots of green sunfish. Talk about a tough drive home. I was fighting sleep the whole time. I thought I had started dreaming....


Nope, it WAS Jesus!


I got home and crashed. I haven't been that worn out in quite sometime. It was an awesome experience and I will be back. I am doing the penguin walk this morning. I feel like someone cut out my calf muscles.
"Often, I have been exhausted on trout streams, uncomfortable, wet, cold, briar scarred, sunburned, mosquito-bitten, but never, with a fly rod in my hand, have I been in a place that was less than beautiful."

Bfish

  • FishHead
  • *****
  • Posts: 851
  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: The niche game....
« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2012, 03:01:49 PM »
awesome report.

I need to fish for them again here in TN soon!

TFTN Admin

  • Administrator
  • *****
  • Posts: 7908
  • Karma: +37/-9
Re: The niche game....
« Reply #2 on: July 15, 2012, 05:55:19 PM »
That's what I'm talking about! I'd want to compliment that trip with an overnight stay in the gorge. Of course I'd want to take my camping, fishing, and camera gear, so I'd need a pack mule to get in and out.

Thanks for that post!
It is preoccupation with possessions, more than anything else, that prevents us from living freely and nobly. ~Thoreau

dbradyh

  • FishHead
  • *****
  • Posts: 1039
  • Karma: +5/-1
  • bhaston
Re: The niche game....
« Reply #3 on: July 15, 2012, 06:18:59 PM »
x2 on the overnight!
That is a beautiful place you discovered and the fishing looked perfect.

gaspergou

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 928
  • Karma: +2/-0
Re: The niche game....
« Reply #4 on: July 15, 2012, 07:08:00 PM »
That's a pretty spectacular place, and some really pretty redeyes!!

If it's where I think it is, there's no camping in the canyon itself. There's a couple free well-maintained primitive campgrounds on the rim and nearby, though.

You even scored a new-ish species! Spotted bass in the Mobile Basin recently got elevated to full species status (Baker et al., 2008). They're now the Alabama Bass, Micropterus henshalli. Compared to "real" spotted bass, Alabama Bass have more and smaller scales on the body, more gill rakers; more blotches along the side and the bars on the caudal peduncle don't totally coalesce into a stripe. Cool fish.

--
Baker, W.H., C.E. Johnston, and G.W. Folkerts. 2008. The Alabama Bass, Micropterus henshalli (Teleostei: Centrarchidae), from the Mobile River basin. Zootaxa 1861: 5767.

mrl0004

  • FishHead
  • *****
  • Posts: 235
  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: The niche game....
« Reply #5 on: July 15, 2012, 07:17:52 PM »
That's a pretty spectacular place, and some really pretty redeyes!!

If it's where I think it is, there's no camping in the canyon itself. There's a couple free well-maintained primitive campgrounds on the rim and nearby, though.

You even scored a new-ish species! Spotted bass in the Mobile Basin recently got elevated to full species status (Baker et al., 2008). They're now the Alabama Bass, Micropterus henshalli. Compared to "real" spotted bass, Alabama Bass have more and smaller scales on the body, more gill rakers; more blotches along the side and the bars on the caudal peduncle don't totally coalesce into a stripe. Cool fish.

--
Baker, W.H., C.E. Johnston, and G.W. Folkerts. 2008. The Alabama Bass, Micropterus henshalli (Teleostei: Centrarchidae), from the Mobile River basin. Zootaxa 1861: 5767.

Right, no camping in the canyon itself, but a nearby state park has "primitive" campgrounds. I think that article might have been from some past colleagues in Auburn (Dept. of Fisheries), but I am more of a microbiologist and don't know much about fish classification. So are all spotted bass in Alabama known as Alabama bass? Or are there two different species of spotted bass? I am guessing the kentucky bass is the other?
"Often, I have been exhausted on trout streams, uncomfortable, wet, cold, briar scarred, sunburned, mosquito-bitten, but never, with a fly rod in my hand, have I been in a place that was less than beautiful."

gaspergou

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 928
  • Karma: +2/-0
Re: The niche game....
« Reply #6 on: July 15, 2012, 08:08:47 PM »
Right, no camping in the canyon itself, but a nearby state park has "primitive" campgrounds. I think that article might have been from some past colleagues in Auburn (Dept. of Fisheries), but I am more of a microbiologist and don't know much about fish classification. So are all spotted bass in Alabama known as Alabama bass? Or are there two different species of spotted bass? I am guessing the kentucky bass is the other?

Yes, Carol is the fish ecologist at Auburn, and does some pretty fair fish taxonomy, too -- even considering where she's at (Roll Tide! ;) )!

Spots in the Tennessee drainage are real spots/Kentuckies, and they've been introduced into parts of the Chattahoochee, too. There's another poorly known bass species over in the Savannah drainage of Georgia and South Carolina that's likely to get recognized soon, a weird form of redeye bass. It's provisionally being called Bartram's Bass...



Steve Howard

  • Need to fish!
  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 8360
  • Karma: +14/-5
Re: The niche game....
« Reply #7 on: July 16, 2012, 05:32:15 AM »
Great TR!! That's what I am talking about. Exploratory fishing.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Si Vis Pacem Para Bellum

Yoda

  • Yoda
  • FishHead
  • *****
  • Posts: 1737
  • Karma: +1/-1
Re: The niche game....
« Reply #8 on: July 16, 2012, 06:54:09 AM »
Great TR Matt!!!! I bet you got an A on every book report you ever turned in!!!!
"Fish, or fish not...There is no Golf..."~Yda~

Bfish

  • FishHead
  • *****
  • Posts: 851
  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: The niche game....
« Reply #9 on: July 16, 2012, 07:36:32 PM »
Spots in the Tennessee drainage are real spots/Kentuckies, and they've been introduced into parts of the Chattahoochee, too.
Except for some of the eastern tributaries to Chickamauga were Alabama spots have been introduced.

TWiles

  • DDS
  • FishHead
  • *****
  • Posts: 1383
  • Karma: +9/-0
Re: The niche game....
« Reply #10 on: July 16, 2012, 08:11:17 PM »
Nice post man.
It's like the equivalent to warmwater brook trout fishing.  There aren't enough truly wild places left.  You're reminding me of how important it is to get out and find them.

mrl0004

  • FishHead
  • *****
  • Posts: 235
  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: The niche game....
« Reply #11 on: July 16, 2012, 08:23:06 PM »
It's like the equivalent to warmwater brook trout fishing.

Well, they are called the "brook trout of Alabama!"  ;D 

Thanks for all the replies guys. This was one of those almost mystical experiences. I am already planning a trip back!

Yoda, I still want some smallie action!
"Often, I have been exhausted on trout streams, uncomfortable, wet, cold, briar scarred, sunburned, mosquito-bitten, but never, with a fly rod in my hand, have I been in a place that was less than beautiful."

Fred Mertz

  • FishHead
  • *****
  • Posts: 598
  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: The niche game....
« Reply #12 on: July 16, 2012, 08:53:00 PM »
Holy Christ!
 ;)

Nice fish, too.
Thank you for sharing; it really looks like quite an adventure.

icthus

  • FishHead
  • *****
  • Posts: 1459
  • Karma: +2/-0
Re: The niche game....
« Reply #13 on: July 17, 2012, 09:07:23 AM »
Great Report----My hat is off to a person who is willing to put the time in to find solitude.

Pal
"You see the fish, make the cast. Tic, tic, hit him, no not a trout set!!!!!! What are you doing?"

toddro

  • FishHead
  • *****
  • Posts: 1643
  • Karma: +1/-0
Re: The niche game....
« Reply #14 on: July 18, 2012, 06:19:36 PM »
great report!
"A passion for steelhead is a hard ride. It is all consuming. God help the woman, man, or child who hopes to compete for some small claim to the passion in the angler so stricken." Bill McMillan, Foreword- A Passion for Steelhead