Explore, Experience and Enjoy the Beautiful Smith River in Southern Virginia

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Danville Flyfishermen on the Smith

April 9 2011

Friday night I awoke to a driving rain and hail pounding against the bedroom window.  It fell in buckets and I knew the tribs on the Smith would be running red.  With no generation scheduled, Saturday fishing was going to be tricky.  The morning dawned gray and cold with threatening skies, but we had folks coming over from Danville and they were still game to give it a go.  I drove to Bassett and checked out river conditions and the water was turbid and stained from Martinsville all the way up to Towne creek.  The old special regs section was going to be out best chance.  For a newbie on the Smith, it might have been difficult to wade as the visibility was only about 1 foot or less but Cricket and I we knew this section well so it was the best choice for todays fishing.
Our new friends, Jim and Mike, were waiting in Stanleytown when Cricket and I arrived.  We headed up to the end of Rosemont Rd where Darrin had graciously sat and waited, "holding" our spot.  All geared up, Darrin headed on upstream to Keaton House rapids to try above Towne creek, leaving the lower section to us. We put on an extra layer of clothes and grabbed our gear.
Since Jim and Mike were fairly new to flyfishing, and the Smith River, we rigged them up with some beadhead nymphs (red crickets of course) and headed across the RR tracks and down to the river.
Cricket worked with Mike while I took Jim and we all headed upstream.  After retrieving a few rigs from those "fly stealing" sycamore branches, we just about had the boys dialed in to fishing on the Smith.
As we made our way upstream through the stained water we saw a couple of rises and not long into the hunt, Mike hooked up with a small brown.  Alright !  the skunk is off lets get to fishing.
A little further upstream and Jim hooked up with a feisty brownie as well.  Man that joker really made some leaps !  Its always a thrill to hook up with a wild Smith River Brown no matter what the size !

The red cricket was doing its job today.  We did catch a few on another Lisa creation, the hares ear with a bit of flash added.  Its all about presentation they say, but I feel better with a "red cricket" in the water.
 As we moved slowly upstream we hooked up with several more browns and its always a thrill watching new folks tie into a little smith river gem.
 A few more tangles and some lost flys we were now up into the better water and the brownies started really popping the surface.  Unfortunately, not only were the brownies getting turned on but the weather was taking a turn for the worse.
Darrin had been giving us regular weather updates via text.  A storm was moving in from Patrick County and we had better be heading back to the truck he said. The thunder was steady and then the lightning moved in a little too close for comfort so we reluctantly made the call to head back.
I sure do hate leaving when the browns are rising but better to live to fish another day.  We got a little damp on the way in but made it to the trucks just in time. Jim and Mike had sushi and chicken salad so we headed back to the Brown Trout Cabin to eat a bite and watch the rain pound the river.  A cold, gray day on the water but you always stay warm when the browns are cooperating !
We hope our new friends enjoyed the day as much as we enjoyed sharing the secrets of the Smith with them.  Thanks Jim and Mike !

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