Well, the trip I have long been waiting for occurred today. I have been seeing pictures and reports of large browns being caught on the South Holston. Scott, Jacob, Jason, and I ventured up that way in hopes of sight fishing to some large trout. The grates and bridge were very crowded, as expected. So we went about a mile downstream to a lesser fished portion of water. Upon arrival at our fishing destination we found some spawning browns, and some of them were large. We managed to pick up a couple of the smaller aggressive ones in the area, but this activity slowed around 11:30. At this time I moved over to a deep slow run and began fishing my typical midge setup. I picked up three decent browns on three consecutive casts. My largest fish of the day came out of this deep run, and was around 15". Not the bruiser I was looking for at the beginning of the day, but a decent fight on the 7x tippet. Not long afterward other fishermen started moving into the area and started to crowd us. So we made our way out and up to the weirs for a little combat fishing. None of us managed to pick up anything there, but there was another fisherman who was absolutely killing them there. He landed a couple in the 20" range and many smaller ones. From the bridge you could see the pod of fish he was casting to, and there was probably a dozen or so in this little 6' diameter area. Of the dozen, there were a couple of large fish. He appeared to be fishing a very small egg pattern, smaller than anything I had used all day. However, I don't know if the fish were actually eating the eggs or just slapping at them. Some of the fish this guy landed were foul hooked, but I guess that is the nature of shallow water sight fishing to a large pod of fish.
I don't expect to make another trip up that way again until the spring. But check back soon, I plan on giving a brief product review of some of my Christmas gifts after using them today.
Until then, Tight Lines and God Bless