Top Water Smallmouth Bass and Trout Too On The Fly!!

The catch and release portion of Delayed Harvest over until October, which means it’s time to chase smallies with top water poppers!  The season is getting started with a BANG!  Here’s a nice “double” from last weekend…..

Lots of healthy 12″ fish crushing the popper and the occasional bigger fish also.  Here’s our guide Chad Stevens with a nice smallie from last weekend.  These hard fighting river smallies are a blast on the fly rod.

Our guiding calendar is filling quickly so if you want to experience the thrill of chasing river smallies on the fly book your trip today!

We recommend 9ft 6wt fly rods with a good stiff 7-1/2ft 2 or 3x leader to battle these fish.  Our recommendation for poppers is fairly simple…  size 4 and 6 poppers in white, black and chartreuse is a great start.  Here’s a link to our great popper selection.

We’re also booking trips on the Catawba River tailrace below Lake James for trout on the fly.  The recreational flows being released from the dam are perfect for a great mix of dry fly and nymph action.  From beginners to life time anglers the Catawba tailrace offers something for everyone.

Here’s a nice rainbow (mostly a brown trout fishery but the occasional bow mixed in) from a recent trip.  This bow was a nice surprise since 99% of the fish we catch on the Catawba tailrace are brown trout.  With the limited access to this river it’s very tough to wade fish.  This is where our oar frame rigged rafts come into play.  These rigs are the perfect vessel for navigating the shallow riffles along the way.  With swivel seats in the front and rear, loaded cooler on board and anchor system as well as dry bags for your extra gear these boats provide a very comfortable way to access the river.

Here’s a picture of one of our rafts at the put in….

So as you can see we have some great options.  From trout to smallies, from Morganton throughout the mountains of western North Carolina our guests are sure to have a great day of fishing.

 

Conditions are getting better and better….

With all the rain we have had over the past two weeks the streams and rivers are finally getting back into great shape.  Wilson Creek is getting gin clear and fishing incredibly!  Keep in mind the delayed harvest is about to change over to catch and keep but we have two more weeks of the stream being stacked and packed with trout.

Another nice DH fish

Another nice DH trout

It’s been a great DH season with several days of our guests catching over 50 trout.  Kind of sad to see it change over to catch and keep but this also marks the beginning of top water smallie action.

Catawba River tailrace below Lake James is finally getting back into shape after the multiple days of 2 plus inches of rain.  The browns are aggressively feeding on black stone flies and every minnow in sight.  Find pods of baitfish and you’ll find feeding trout within a few feet.  During low water (recreational flows) we’ve had some good days using Elk Hair Caddis dry flies and beadhead early black stones.  Once the generation starts it’s been all streamer action.  Here’s a link to Duke Energy’s site for generation info.

Smallmouth bass are starting to hammer top water poppers and this is just the beginning.  If you haven’t experienced top water river smallies you owe it to yourself to check it out.

Top Water Smallies!!!!

We are now booking trips for the 2012 smallie top water action.  Click here for booking info!