Methods & Strategies to Use "Now" Fishing the Smokies

Insects and other food the trout may be eating:
1. Blue-winged Olives (Baetis)
2. Blue Quills
3. Quill Gordons
4. Little Black Caddis
5. Winter Stoneflies
6. Midges
7. Streamers

Little Black Caddis - Adult

The Little Black Caddis Adult is effective both when these caddisflies hatch and are
still on the surface of the water and when the female returns to deposit her eggs.
That is one thing that makes this hatch so enjoyable to fish. It is similar to a mayfly
hatch and the dry fly works great not just during the egg laying activity but also
during the hatch.

There are several species of the American Grannoms but all of the adults look very
much alike and have black bodies. We have one "Perfect Fly" pattern for the adult
that works well for these different species.

These caddisflies are normally imitated using a size 18 to 16 hook. The
males are one hook size smaller than the females. Normally the water is fairly cold,
approximately 50 degrees, when the Grannoms hatch. They do ride the water for
a short time before they fly off to the banks. Sometimes it is so cold in the
mornings during the hatch, that the adults are almost dormant. It is usually
mid-afternoon on the cold days after a hatch has started before the adults start
flying. On these cold days, the hatch will start during the warmest part of the day.

Egg Layers:
As mentioned before, the adult females usually start the egg laying process prior
to the end of the hatch. For some time, maybe an hour or two, there are usually
a lot of caddisflies on the water. The females either deposit their eggs on the
surface of the water or they dive and deposit the ball of eggs they carry. The
trout eat them in both cases. They ones that dive return to the surface of the
water for a short time before flying away.

When the egg laying first starts, the most productive fly is probably still the pupa
imitation. At some point, the hatch will stop and things change. At that time I
suggest you try a dry imitation of the female egg layers.

You should fish the adult dry fly in a dead-drift fashion where you see the most
activity. I usually fish the adult fly up and across but it really doesn't matter as long
as you are able to get the fly where the egg layers are active. This is usually the
same water that they hatch in. Most of the time the dry fly will work great during the
hatch before the egg laying starts but factors such as the water and air
temperatures can affect this activity and results. Remember, the egg layers are
caddisflies from previous day hatches, not the newly hatched ones. So the amount
of egg laying depends greatly on the size of the previous hatches.

Very late in the day near dark, there may be a lot of caddisflies on the water. They
usually collect in the eddies and slow, calm pockets along the banks. This is
another place you want to fish the adult pattern. Sometimes the trout will rise to it
when it is just drifting slowly around in circles in the eddies. They will also collect at
the heads of the pools below the riffles and runs.

Copyright 2009 James Marsh
"Perfect Fly" Little Black Caddis Adult