How to Make Flies for Trout Fishing in the Smokies

How to Make Flies for Trout Fishing in the SmokiesThe Great Smoky Mountains have a diverse range of water for fly anglers. Fast-moving streams, back-country lakes and beaver ponds all hold fish and anglers must make different flies for each type of water. The flies can be general in nature because the fish have a short growing season and must be opportunistic feeders. Flies must also be durable and have the ability to reach the level of the fish. Although the flies can be purchased, making them increases the reward when a fish is landed.


Difficulty: Moderate

Step 1
Tie flies with 2- to 3-inch thick foam bodies for fast-moving streams. Foam hoppers, ants and bees are all effective during the summer months.
Step 2
Tie flies with elk and deer hair wings to increase buoyancy for fast-moving water. The combination of foam and elk hair will allow flies to float for long periods of time. Also dress the flies with a silicone-based floatant before fishing.
Step 3
Tie flies with parachute hackle and CDC wings for fishing in shallow lakes and beaver ponds. The flies will hit the water softly and are less likely to spook fish. They will also imitate the mayflies that are abundant in Smoky Mountain stillwaters.
Step 4
Tie flies that imitate nymphs and bait fish with tungsten bead heads. The flies are effective for fishing deep lakes and subsurface in fast streams. They are also effective for targeting large trout.
Step 5
Apply head cement or super glue to the thread as you tie each fly. The glue will increase durability and help secure materials to the hook.

Tips & Warnings

Tie a variety of nymphs, streamers and dry flies for the Smoky Mountains. Carry a single fly box with 20-30 attractors to reduce weight while hiking and allow room for water and other gear.
Streams in the Smoky Mountains are swift during the spring runoff period. Focus on the lakes when streams are high and avoid any dangerous crossings.

Article Written By Zach Lazzari

Zach Lazzari is an outdoor writing specialist. He has experience in website writing as well as standard newspaper writing. He wrote an outdoor column for the Silver World in Lake City, Colo., and articles for Lazzari is currently completing his bachelor's degree online through Arizona State University and lives in southwest Montana.

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