That were strong and pulled hard……
Didn’t catch any huge fish, didn’t catch a huge numbers of fish but had a great day on the water. My client Carl is a super guy and the first time we fished, his friend Wayne joined us. Wayne passed away this summer so this trip was about remembering Wayne! Carl even decided to give up the wacky worm on his spinning rod and give fly fishing a try. Wayne was a huge fly fishermen, fly tier and gave Carl a hard time about not fly fishing.
Carl fished the fly all day long! In fact we went retro.. Carl fished a classic St. Croix 6wt glass rod with some old reel I had never seen. The slow glass rod caused us some missed fish, bad casts and even a few “wind knots” but over all it preformed well. Flinging top water poppers on a retro outfit was pretty darn cool.
Tomorrow off to the Catawba with Jim from Hendersonville. Jim has fished with several times before and I just can’t get him to understand that the Catawba tailrace is a brown trout fishery. He catches some brown but his big fish always seems to be a big bow. Hope he wears out some big browns tomorrow with no generation planned.
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….
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.
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.
We are now booking trips for the 2012 smallie top water action. Click here for booking info!
It’s been a hot summer and that means TOP WATER SMALLIES!! Here’s a some pics from the past few weeks.
All of these fish were caught on top water poppers using 5 and 6 weight fly rods! We still have a few days open and can accommodate up to 6 anglers per day. Book your trip as soon as possible since summer will be over before you know it and the top water bite will be gone as well. Here’s a quick link for your convenience…
BTW not everyday is ideal…. check out this happy family on a 3 boat float.
Had a blast floating and fishing the Nolichucky Gorge with my buddies this weekend. Some of the highlights…
Mack aka Richard falling 1-15/16ths out of the boat. First person to ever be ejected from my boat and he was rowing!
Loosing my Sage SP 9ft 6wt into the river at Murphy’s Ledge, then finding it just down stream. Of course it broke on the next fish I hooked!
The look on Jeremy’s face when Chad got them into a little trouble.
Overall a fun time with a great group of friends! Chunking flies as a added bonus.
Here’s two videos from the weekend… short version and long version. Hope you enjoy!
My buddies have one man pontoons and keep sending me pics like this one….
Headed out for an afternoon float after church on Easter Sunday. Like most trips early in the year we brought along the hardware just in case we couldn’t get em on the fly. Surewas nice to be back smallie fishing even though it’s been a great winter and spring chasing trout. Float fishing on free flowing water, throwing big popping bugs for smallmouth bass…. oh how I love thee!
We didn’t wear em out, we didn’t get skunked and sure could have caught more on subsurface flies and hardware but just watching them engulf the popper does something to my inner being. It’s only going to get better from here.