They Coulda Been Contenders!
Or wall-hangers--but we released them all!!




The old saying "The best time to fish is when you can go" almost always refers to the fact that you're fishing in less than perfect conditions: the solunar tables are wrong, the tide is wrong, the water's too hot or cold--or it's just miserable weather.

A giant brown trout on the Watauga River
Dan Velinsky hoists a hefty Watauga River brown trout (click image to enlarge)

That last condition was true when Greg Braunstein and Dan Velinsky arrived on March 27, 2009 for two days of fishing the tailwaters of East Tennessee. But bad weather (we're talking cold, pouring rain with few moments of relief) doesn't necessarily mean bad fishing, as the monster brown on the left proves.

Altamont Anglers guide Teo Whitlock, following on two previous days of miserable weather but great fishing with the Tootleman group, found similar weather and similar fishing success over the next two days with Dan and Greg.

A big brown trout
Greg Braunstein with a nice, fat brown trout caught on March 28, 2009 (click image to enlarge).

It's not the most pleasant thing to haul oneself out of warm, dry bed at the crack of dawn to drive through a cold downpour facing a full day in an open boat, but sometimes the rewards justify it--if you're crazy like an angler!

You know it's wet outside when a waterproof camera shows rain on the lens, and even though Greg's hands are as cold as the trout he's holding, we think we detect the faintest trace of a satisfied smile on his face! Well, maybe....

Click the images below for larger views of Greg and Dan's fishing:
A big trout caught on the Watauga River A big trout caught on the Watauga River A big trout caught on the Watauga River A big trout caught on the Watauga River

(Altamont Anglers operates on Pisgah National Forest Rivers under USDA Forest Service Permit #PIS6560)