High Country Specks

Thread starter #1
It was a cool 55 degress when I parked my truck at the trailhead on the Tennessee side of the Smokies and hit the trail for a 2 mile hike into the mountains where colorful Southern Appalachian Brook Trout thrive and have done so for thousands of years.
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I finally got to the section of the creek where I wanted to be and gink'd up a #12 Smoky Mountain. It didn't take long for the first jewel of the high country to attack my dry fly.
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For the next few hours I brought Speck after Speck to hand including several dandies.
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This creek is characterized by large plunge pools with boulders the size of Volkswagens and tall waterfalls that require hands and knees climbing and pulling yourself up by overhanging Laurels.
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Hunting bear in the mountains is part of my heritage. Chasing big woods bucks in November and December is a passion, and hearing a mountain gobbler respond to my call in the Spring gets my heart racing but seeing a Speckled Trout take a dry fly is a thrill unlike any other.
 
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Thread starter #3
I was reading they had to restock the brookies back into the park.

Glad they are doing well
Several streams in the park were restored such as Leconte Creek and Lynn Camp Prong along with some others but there has not been or needed to be widespread stocking of Brook Trout in the high country. Many headwater tributaries were shut down to fishing for about 30 years but have since been reopened.
 
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NCHillbilly

Administrator
Staff member
It was a cool 55 degress when I parked my truck at the trailhead on the Tennessee side of the Smokies and hit the trail for a 2 mile hike into the mountains where the colorful Southern Appalachian Brook Trout thrive and have done so for thousands of years.
View attachment 1156152

I finally got to the section of the creek where I wanted to be and tied on a #12 Smoky Mountain Candy It didn't take long for the first jewel of the high country to attack my dry fly.
View attachment 1156159

For the next few hours I brought Speck after Speck to hand including several dandies.
View attachment 1156161 View attachment 1156162 View attachment 1156163 View attachment 1156164 View attachment 1156166
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This creek is characterized by large plunge pools with boulders the size of Volkswagens and tall waterfalls that require hands and knees climbing and pulling yourself up by overhanging Laurels.
View attachment 1156170
View attachment 1156171

Hunting bear in the mountains is part of my heritage. Chasing big woods bucks in November and December is a passion, and hearing a mountain gobbler respond to my call in the Spring gets my heart racing but seeing a Speckled Trout take a dry fly is a thrill unlike any other.
Doesn't get much better than that! Looks like a perfect day. :cheers:
 

NCHillbilly

Administrator
Staff member
I was reading they had to restock the brookies back into the park.

Glad they are doing well
Then you read something very wrong somewhere. The specks were mostly forced back into the headwaters after the industrial logging and introduction of rainbows and browns, but they were never anywhere near being wiped out in the park, nor have they ever been restocked. You were probably reading about localized southern Appalachian brook trout restorations they've been doing the last several years. They will identify creeks that have a natural barrier like a big waterfall that rainbows and browns can't get over, kill or capture all the fish above it, then restock it with specks from the same watershed or one nearby. They have done this on quite a few creeks in the last couple decades, and it seems to be working pretty well.
 

NCHillbilly

Administrator
Staff member
i think he was talking about brook
Specks AKA speckled trout aka mountain trout aka natives are southern Appalachian strain native brook trout. They're genetically different to likely subspecies level from the common northern strain that starts in the New River watershed in Virginia and goes on up to Canada. All specks are brook trout, but most brook trout aren't specks, if that makes any sense.

There were a few northern strain brook trout stocked in the Smokies back in the early 1900s by the CCC, but they didn't take hold in most places. They are still found in a few places here and there as hybrids with the native specks. All the stream restoration efforts are being done with the pure native southern Appalachian strain.
 
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Thread starter #19
That's what I am looking for, all of mine for the most part are either longer or faster...looking at the short 2 wt. for that kind of stuff...
I don't like particularly short rods. It's hard to keep line off the water and roll and bow and arrow cast. With that said, glass rods are inherently shorter than their graphite counterparts. I find it easier to fish even the skinniest of creeks with an 8 footer.
 
I don't like particularly short rods. It's hard to keep line off the water and roll and bow and arrow cast. With that said, glass rods are inherently shorter than their graphite counterparts. I find it easier to fish even the skinniest of creeks with an 8 footer.
I'm generally with you, it kind of depends on the type of fishing...most all of mine are 8' 3" to 9" with a couple of exceptions...
 
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