“Eventually, all things merge into one, and a river runs through it.”
— Norman Maclean, author
“A River Runs through It.”
Anglers who visit the area will not be disappointed. Fly fishing is a popular area activity. Just make sure you know the rules. Even though most area trout streams can be fished year round, the Hatchery Supported streams are closed during March. The region also has designated wild trout waters, catch and release and delayed harvest areas. As a result, it’s a good idea to talk to a local fly fishing guide or visit a local fly fishing shop to learn more about the fly fishing rules, regulations and type of fishing license required. A fine from the game warden is not a great vacation souvenir.
The area also has many places to wet a line. For example, if you’re an adventurer, the Linville River Gorge offers some scenic and adventurous fly fishing opportunities in a hard to reach setting. The brown trout are known to grow pretty large here. If it’s a more sedate experience you’re after, Moses Cone Manor may be more your bag. It’s a secluded lake near Blowing Rock where you’ll find rainbow trout and redbreast sunfish too.
Again, ask one of the local outfitters about best places to fly fish. They can also rent you gear if you don’t have your own. They may not share all of their secrets, but it’s a good place to start.
Fly fishing resources
NCWRC: The North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission is a good place to begin your research. The only drawback here is that the maps don’t list all roads and some of the maps are difficult to read.
Highland Outfitters: Highland Outfitters is the High Country’s premier full service fly shop in the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Northwestern North Carolina.
Foscoe Fly Fishing Company: This Orvis-endorsed shop and dealer was the first high profile fly shop in the area offering gear, guides and schools.
Mountains to Coast Fly Fishing and Shotgun Sports Guide Service: If you prefer to go with a guide or need help planning a group angling trip, these experienced folks can help.
So, whether you go it alone or with a guide, enjoy fly fishing in the high country! Hopefully, you can bring back a catch of the day to your cottage and enjoy the fruits of your labor.