Grindstone Camping Trip, May 15-17

It was a small group that checked into the campground this year. Some guys had some health situations that kept them at home. Others had family and other time conflicts. But the ones that showed fished long and hard. Eric, Dean, Darrin and Doug were joined by a couple of guests from NC, John and Chuck. Roy drove over early Saturday for fishing, too. When I arrived a little before noon on Friday, Eric and Dean were set up and gone fishing. I got my hammock up and unloaded the truck and was off to find some fish before long. I found those two not far down the river on the Whitetop-Laurel. I backtracked a good bit and hopped in the water. I got into rainbows and lost a decent brown, but the numbers were not as good as I thought there should be. There was not much bug activity and the water was a little lower than it was last year in June. The guys caught up and passed me, so I finished my run and hopped out to go around them and up Green Cove. It treated me a little better. Including a surprisingly large brown.

2015-05-14 23.51.23 2015-05-15 20.20.00 2015-05-15 20.21.52 2015-05-15 23.44.16OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

After a good dinner, some beverages beside the fire and a few tall tales we all slept well. Got up Saturday and headed out to do it again after breakfast. Some of the brave ones had the eggs with locally gathered ramps. Most of the fellows headed back to W-L, then ended the day on the upper South Holston. Everybody got rained on at least a little bit. Darrin and Doug hit up some small streams. The action was hot and heavy with probably 60 fish to hand. Here’s some pics from that.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

John had to bug out before dinner and Roy was already gone. Dinner was easier and that was good, because we were all tired.  Sleep came easy and Sunday dawned very damp. Packing up wet gear is not much fun, because you are going to have to set it all up again at home. Chuck, Eric and Dean headed home. Darrin and Doug decided to fish a few hours before doing that. Darrin had a much better day than Doug. And he didn’t blow out a boot, either.

Join us next trip!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Pics-May2015 020 Pics-May2015 022 Pics-May2015 024 Pics-May2015 026

March Meeting Info and More

Smith River Trout Unlimited (SRTU) has a great “How to” Musky & Striper fishing program lined up for you when we meet at Rania’s Restaurant in uptown Martinsville, on Thursday, March 5, 2015 at 6:30 pm. Musky & Striper expert and Orvis indorsed guide Matt Miles will shorten your learning curve on these two hard fighting species.

We’d also like to remind you about two other up coming events:

Smith River Clean Up is on Saturday, March 28th. We’ll meet at the old church at the end of Shady View Rd at 9:00 am and concentrate our effort on both sides of the Hwy 220 Bypass Bridge. This is a good time to bring your friends, neighbors and anyone else who loves the river and hates litter. We can all help make a difference, one garbage bag full at a time. We will host a cookout and fishing after the cleanup.

Grindstone Fishing and Camping Trip, May 15, 16, 17 – Stay at Grindstone Campground on the North side of Mt. Rodgers and fish Smyth, Grayson and Washington Co. streams. We have had a blast the past two years we did this trip and you could join the fun. We eat good, stay at a great campsite, fish great trout waters and have a great weekend in general. The club covers the campsite fees. We split the food costs and chores. Campsite accommodates 12. Tent sites and good trees for hammocks, too. Club members have first dibs. Sign up before we open it up to guests on April 6. Contact Doug Jessie @ d.jessie81@gmail.com 540-874-6560

You do not have to be a member of TU to attend our meetings.(You must be a member in order to vote on chapter business). Anyone who has an interest in the Smith River Fishery is encouraged to attend.

Rania’s provides us with a nice meeting space with the expectation that the majority of attendees will purchase a meal. (Good food, moderate prices). Address is 147 E. Main St., Martinsville, VA 24112. It is in the historic district of Martinsville known as uptown as it sits on a hill.

2015 Events, Mark Your Calendars!

Hi folks – The Smith River TU leadership met recently to come up with an agenda for the 2015 calendar year. We have an exciting year ahead with something for everyone.  Other items may be added as well. We would love your ideas and energy to spearhead a project or your favorite program.

 

 

The following calendar events were proposed, discussed and agreed to by the SRTU Board of Directors.

 

  • March 5, Regular Meeting – Musky & Striper fishing. Presentation by Orvis indorsed guide and regional expert Matt Miles.

 

  • April ??, Philpot Expo  – Set up table with fly tying demo, casting demo, talk up SRTU.

 

  • March 28, River Clean up – Concentrate on section both sides of Hwy 22O Bypass Bridge. Meet at old church end of Shady View Rd. Cook out and fishing after clean up.

 

  • May 15-17, Group fishing/camping trip to Mt Rogers / Grayson Highland  / Grindstone campground area.

 

  • June 4, Regular meeting – “The Joys of Fly Fishing for Warm Water Species”. Presentation and fly tying demo by well known fly fisherman and tier Anthony Hipps.

 

  • June 12-14, Fish, Lie & Tie, Bassett Cabin, Modest fee for campers so we can have dinner(s) catered, supply food, etc., excess funds to the treasury.

 

  • August 8, Smith River Fest – Fly tie demo, talk up TU, casting demo.

 

  • September 3, Regular Meeting. Salt water fishing. Guest speaker TBA

 

  • September 12, Fish with a friend & cook out. Meet at Mirror Plant parking lot. Scott Griffin is lead on this.

 

  •  December 3, Regular Meeting, “Health of The Smith River” report from VDGIF.  This is VDGIF annual summary of It’s sampling which occurs in late July or early August.

 

Other items of interest:

 

Darrin Doss is working on an update to SRTU website http://smithrivertu.com/index.html and needs feedback on what we want to see and ideas on how to present it. He also needs material, links, photos etc to insert at appropriate places.  While checking things out click on over to our Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/SmithRiverTU and let us know what you would like to see there as well

 

Everyone is encouraged  to look through their gear for items they no longer use or have a need for. Bring these items to our meetings where we will set up a swap or for sale table. As the saying goes, “one man’s trash, another man’s treasure

 

Reminder there is a Fly Show in Winston Salem  on February 6-7 (Friday & Saturday)  Many of the regional folks also hold a Lying & Tying event at the Marriot Hotel each evening once the show closes down. This is a good chance to meet local fishermen and have some one on one fly tying instruction.

 

Nat Greene Fly Fishers is holding their Annual Spring Banquet & Seminar on February 28th at the Bur-Mill Park Clubhouse, Greensboro,  NC.  Tom Rosenbauer, well known fly fishing author, Orvis spokesperson and TV personality will be the keynote speaker. Contact Laura Kennerly 336-707-7665 for details.

December Meeting Minutes

On Thursday, Dec. 4, we meet at Rania’s Restaurant in Martinsville. We had two speakers, at least two guests, and over twenty members in attendance. It takes a good program to draw a crowd, huh?

The meeting was called to order by Shane and after recapping the club events (Grayson Highlands Camping and Fishing Trip, Fish With A Friend Day, Lyin’, Tyin’ and Fishin’ Weekend, Smith River Fest, River Clean-up) over the past year, he reminded everyone that we had elections to hold for new officers after the presentation.

And yes, we had a great program. George Palmer and Scott Smith from VDGIF gave us a presentation on the stream sampling that they did this summer on the Smith. It was a very entertaining and informative presentation with a lot of questions and answers throughout the session. Here are the highlights that I came away with.

Following comments are from Philpott to Martinsville Dam:

  • they samples 8 sites above the Martinsville dam. All together, they totaled about 8000 feet of river sampled.
  • 2300 fish were collected. 70% were Brown Trout, 2 % were Rainbows, 13% Darters, 5.5% Chub. and the other 9.5% were other baitfish, bass, sunfish, etc. They estimate that they only collect about half of the fish in the sampled areas using the barge technique employed on the upper river.
  • They have collected an average of 11 trout/10 meters over the last ten years. Last five years have trended higher.
  • The average fish size above Martinsville dam was 8.3″. This is also trending higher.
  • Higher numbers of trout were collected from the Mirror Plant to the Philpott Dam. Numbers collected fell of dramatically below Bassett. But baitfish numbers were reversed. The waters below Bassett become harder to samle and the sampled areas were smaller, but is something else going on?
  • No trout over 14″(I think?) were sampled above Martinsville.

1300 brown trout were moved from the upper river to the waters below Martinsville after they had their adipose fin clipped. They were released in three+ locations.

Following comments are from below the Martinsville dam:

  • They sampled 11.1 miles of river below the dam. The technique, equipment and measurements were different because of the different river conditions.
  • They used one raft with a rower, a shocker and one dipper. They could only sample the water right around the raft. They could not cover the width of the river as they can higher up. Deeper holes were also harder to shock and sample.
  • Fish sampled are measured in fish/hour, not fish/meter or feet. This is the sampling and measuring system used on most larger rivers.
  • Much more chubs, bass, sunfish, darters were sampled
  • 175 brown trout were sampled. Most fish were 12-20″.
  • 43/hour were sampled. They were impressed since it was the crews first time on this stretch of unfamiliar water. By comparison, George said that smallmouth sampling on the upper New River, a premier water, averages about 88/hour. Musky sampling is less than 5/hour.

Considerations/plans for above Martinsville:

  • More extensive testing/sampling from Collinsville/Fieldale to Martinsville Dam. Why low populations? There is more food available. No spawning habitat, high water temperatures, fish not moving down from higher water, past/current pollutant issues?
  • Relocate clipped adipose trout from Philpott area to this stretch below Bassett. Study growth and survival of these fish.

Considerations/plans for below Martinsville:

  • Continue to move more fish from Philpott area.
  • Stock sterile Brown Trout fingerlings (George has requested 11,000 for 2015). They will OTC marked so they can examined for growth in future years. Sterile fish do not waste energy on reproduction, so growth rates are higher.
  • More extensive sampling and testing. Especially of the trouts’ diet.

That concluded our program. George and Scott stayed through the meeting and talked with us more after the meeting. They were extremely generous with their time and knowledge and we are very grateful for them spending the time with us. And we’re glad to have such good guys in the positions they are in. Thanks again.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA20140819-IMG_1454 20140819-IMG_1489 20140819-IMG_1495 20140820-IMG_1520 20140820-IMG_1550-Edit 20140820-IMG_1584

We moved on to the nominations and elections.

We had a proposed slate prepared and Al received no new nominations from the floor. Al called for a second and then a vote to accept and it was a done deal. New officers for 2015 are: President, yours truly. Doug Jessie; Vice President, Eric Tichay; Secretary, Al Kittredge; Treasurer, Scott Griffin, for his third term.

Next meeting is scheduled for March 5, 2015.

Hope everyone has a great Christmas. Maybe Santa will bring you some new gear? And go fishing!

Notify me if you have corrections/additions, please.

Doug Jessie

Secretary

d.jessie81@gmail.com

Grindstone Camping and Fishing Trip Report


On June 20-22 we journeyed to Smythe, Grayson and Washington counties for a great weekend. 8 of us made the trip which included great food and drink, fishing on a wide variety of streams, fishing with new partners, getting rained on, campfires, tall tales, and general fun. The pics tell the story! If you missed it, you missed a wonderful trip.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA IMGP0776_zpsbb73ad62 IMGP0778_zps81ccad85 IMGP0799_zps3bd439a6 IMGP0802_zpsf1c626c6 IMGP0820_zpsf7bda0de IMGP0825_zps0992a768 IMGP0835_zpsfbacfc42 IMGP0838_zps12956494 P6200301.JPG_thumb P6200310.JPG_thumb P6200350.JPG_thumb P6210357.JPG_thumb P6210365.JPG_thumb P6210384.JPG_thumb P6220391.JPG_thumb

June Meeting and Fish With A Friend Report

On Saturday June 7 we met at the Bassett Mirror Plant parking area. We had a quick little meeting to cover upcoming events and answer questions.

Here is what’s up:

June 20-22      Grindstone Campground Trip      Camp and fish

July 19              River Clean Up                                 Upper river and road, dam to Philpott Rd., lunch served

August 9           Smith River Feast                             Sports Complex, tent display, fly tying, casting

September 4    Meeting

December 4     Meeting

We had 7 members and two quests in attendance.

The meeting was adjourned and fishing began.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA IMGP0706_zpsc3134295 OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

Scott was the lead on the vent and he had brought his grill. We met back at the parking area for burgers and dogs and lies. After that we broke camp. Some went on their ways and others fished. Wish we had seen more of you there! Some spots are still available for the Grindstone event!

 

IMGP0738_zps2a3ccb44 IMGP0724_zps5a58bf8e IMGP0714_zpsf0468732 IMGP0710_zpse899a857 IMGP0709_zps209f93fd

Grayson Highlands Area Trip – June 20-21

Hey sports fans! Back to Grindstone Campground we go.
Friday and Saturday dinner together, Saturday and Sunday breakfast, too. On your own for lunches.
Limited to 12. 12 sane people. The campground will be full and shenanigans will need to be toned down.
We still plan on having fun, though!
Same large campsite. 30D.
Cost is $15 each.
Limited to four, that’s 4 tents. Hammocks are overlooked (so far).
Parking for four cars at the site, others in overflow area 150 yds. away. Carpool if possible.
Fishing was very good last year on this same weekend, I expect the same.
No trout stamp is needed for any waters since it’s after June 15. Get a NF stamp, though.
If you go into Grayson Highlands State Park, they will charge per car.

SRTU members have first dibs on spots until June 2.
If others want on the waiting list, I’ll start one now.
Contact me to sign up and for questions.
Looking for volunteers to provide dinners and get reimbursed. Pre-prepared for the most part works out great.
Need volunteers to help with breakfasts, also.

Doug

d.jessie81@gmail.com

 

 

Event Report: Lyin’, Tyin’ and Fishin’ the Smith

On Friday May 16 we kicked off the event at the Bassett Cabin on the upper Smith River. If you have fished the section between Philpott Rd. and Philpott Dam, you have seen the 1926 log cabin on the south shore. Shane secured us the cabin for the weekend and we just had to do a quick cleaning and then respect the property during the event.  The weather was very favorable for the entire weekend. In fact it was darn cool at night! We awoke to 42 degrees Saturday morning and guys scrambled for jackets and a cup of hot coffee. There were a lot of conflicting events that kept some folks away, some of which were fly fishing related. But we had 10 members and quests who were there at various times who fished, socialized, tied, ate and/or spent the night. A good time was had by all and we connected a few faces to names.

Friday

They generated from 1 – 7pm, so a few us were determined to get set up in time to get a little fishing in before generation and then fish on the falling water and falling light afterward. I got the skunk off the trip after 20 minutes just upstream of the cabin. Al went downstream and scored some, too. We had company for the later fishing and a few guys went upstream a piece, while the remainder fished the water right in front of the cabin. No big hatches, but some bugs were coming off and the fish were eager. Paul saluted everyone upon their arrival, then some ganged up on pizza, some ate on their own. A roaring fire and conversation ended the day.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA 001 002 006P5160251.JPG_thumb

Saturday

Up and at ’em! There was some slow movement as quite a few adult beverages were downed Friday night. Paul got the coffee going, Shane shuffled in from his hammock to get some bacon and eggs cooking, and we tied for a couple of hours and talked strategies. We split up and most folks fished as a team. Everyone did OK to great, depending on the location (and expectations!). Hendricksons and Light Cahills popped off all day. The nymphs/emergers took the most fish though. The evening sulphur hatch was OK, not epic. Shane and Al fetched a BBQ dinner for everyone and there was much burping around the fire.

007 008 011 009 004 005 010 013 OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA 003012

Sunday

An even slower morning! Coffee and bacon got everyone moving. Some guys broke camp early to head home. Others packed up to fish some more before they hit the road. I tied for a while to have THE right flies for the day and evening. I did not get to fish into the night on Saturday and I was amped up about tonight. Guys trickled out, Shane and I tidied up and locked up and we headed out, too. Unfortunately, he broke his rod tip and his day was done. Not a happy dude. I fished for a few hours and was having my best day on the Smith in, well, maybe ever! But, I hiked out to get some grub and a beer. Scott and Paul showed up as planned and we headed back down to stake out our spots for the hoped for sulphur hatch. It started popping off and then it would stop. The fish were a little harder to key in on than earlier. I worked my way upstream to those two and the bugs really started to blow up then. Really impressive. sight. Scott and Paul had a huge cloud coming off by them. They were probably eating them, too! And then darkness sunk in and the action started to ebb. And I was tired! We eased on home.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA  OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAP5180255.JPG_thumb P5180259.JPG_thumb P5180273.JPG_thumb P5180275.JPG_thumb P5180276.JPG_thumb P5180279.JPG_thumb

Good times. Sorry a lot of you missed it. Remember, we have two chances to fish together coming up in June. Posts are up on both, don’t miss all the fun!

Doug

Lyin’, Tyin’ and Fishing The Smith

We’re coming down to the wire! Have some spots open.

May 16-18, Lyin’, Tyin’ and Fishing on the Smith River
SRTU is sponsoring the shindig.
Fish during the day and tie after dark in the Bassett Cabin along the Smith.
Limited to about 18 participants/campers, you can fully participate without camping (but NO drinking and driving!).
Open to one and all! Cost will be about $20 and will cover basic supplies and a BBQ dinner Saturday evening, other meals are on your own.
The cabin is rustic, with a very basic kitchen with frig, stove, deep fryer, griddle/grill. It has running water & electricity, but no heat or cooling.
8 twin size bunk beds upstairs, no linens. Two screened sleeping porches (w/4 available mattresses in the upper porch).
One large tying/socializing room on the first. Nice outhouse out back and a horseshoe pit and level area for tents by the river.
Water directly in front of the cabin is the upper stocked area of the Smith. Old special regs area is downstream 1 mi.
Contact Shane Pinkston for sign up and details: shanepink1@gmail.com

 

May 16-18, Lyin, Tyin and Fishin!

May 16-18, Lyin’, Tyin’ and Fishing on the Smith River
SRTU is sponsoring the shindig.
Fish during the day and tie after dark in the Bassett Cabin along the Smith.
Limited to about 18 participants/campers, you can fully participate without camping (but NO drinking and driving!).
Open to one and all! Cost will be about $20 and will cover basic supplies and a BBQ dinner Saturday evening, other meals are on your own.
The cabin is rustic, with a very basic kitchen with frig, stove, deep fryer, griddle/grill. It has running water & electricity, but no heat or cooling.
8 twin size bunk beds upstairs, no linens. Two screened sleeping porches (w/4 available mattresses in the upper porch).
One large tying/socializing room on the first. Nice outhouse out back and a horseshoe pit and level area for tents by the river.
Water directly in front of the cabin is the upper stocked area of the Smith. Old special regs area is downstream 1 mi.
Contact Shane Pinkston for sign up and details: shanepink1@gmail.com

%d bloggers like this: