March roared in this weekend with rain and high winds but at least with warm temperatures. A nice reminder of spring to come even though if you have lived here any length of time you know winter has not faded away yet. I had the chance to sneak away for a few hours on Sunday for some solo fishing on the Clinch. The sudden rain in the afternoon chased off the few who were out and I literally had a half mile of river to myself. I thought with steel gray overcast skies and seventy degree weather a bug hatch was sure to follow. That never happened so the fishing was not great and the birds were not feeding on a hatch that never appeared. It did not matter to me as it was just sheer joy to be out river bottom walking, cigar in hand and casting a rod. It was a tonic for the soul, feeling once again that familiar memory in the arms and shoulders of shooting line not just to the current streams but streams of thoughts on a quiet river.


This month we have a surprise for everyone as we hold a special “Zoom to your Room” meeting on a different night Tuesday March 23rd 2021. The event will start at 6PM and feature our special guest tier Tim Flagler of Tightline Productions. Many of you know him from his famous “Tightline Video’s” on YouTube, Orvis and many other social media sources. Tim will be broadcasting live from his studio to us that evening where his videos are filmed. Making this an even more unique event we will be sending out in advance the materials list so those that wish to can also tie right along with him. Not to worry if you are not a tier this will be a great evening of tips and information on spring fly fishing in the Smokies. Great Smoky Mountain TU is providing this live event at no charge to our chapter members and friends. Stay tuned in the coming days for the link to log in on ZOOM on Tuesday March 23rd at 6pm and the materials list.


The coming months will give us some outdoor opportunities to gather together while social distancing. We may need some volunteers to help the Farragut High School Fishing club on a day trip in the Smokies this month. This will be their first outing of the year and should make for a fun day for everyone.

In addition we are in discussions with the Gatlinburg Park Division who we partner with for the “Battle of Gatlinburg” to hold a river cleanup this spring. This is one of the most high profile areas in the Smokies that for many visitors are their first chance to see fly fishing. Many people who travel here are not aware the Gatlinburg is one of the very few places in the country to fish for trout right in the center of town. The downside is that as we have learned from the fly fishing tournament litter is a problem like other places. We hope to do our small part with the City of Gatlinburg to help clean the waters up. Trout and trash are never meant to be together!


We want to say congratulations to our GSM TU chapter member Lou Gauci, as he is now serving as the Vice-Chair on the Tennessee Trout Unlimited Council. He will make a fine representative for all of the Tennessee chapters and Trout Unlimited. Remember to follow us on the GSM TU Facebook page our chapter website site. The Great Smoky Mountain TU Facebook page is the best way to stay up to date with latest GSM TU news and information.


In closing, we extend an open invitation to everyone whether a TU member or not to take part in all our chapter events and projects this year. Last year was a difficult year for all but this year looks to finally put life back in the sunshine. Come be a part of a group whose only requirement is a love of the outdoors and all it holds.


John Reinhardt