Fly Fishing Reports


May 2017

Tuckasegee River Delayed Harvest 

The fly fishing reports are updated near the middle of each month to provide you with info on what you may need for your fly fishing adventure. Rain, Rain, and more rain have kept the DH section in Bryson off colored more than we would like. Sure, you can streamer the edges more during these off colored days but there is a difference of off colored and chocolate milk! If it is dirty then you have loads of other options!

The park streams alone offer several thousand miles of choices! The overcast days with the fronts coming increased the bite for BIG trout. We have had some great black caddis activity early in the month with BWO’s in the afternoons. The Quill Gordon hatches have been spotty on the river. March browns have been productive before the cold snaps.

The majority of trips have ignored the hatches and stayed on either streamer bite or larger attractor nymphs. The water temps have remained cold still so the fish tend to respond to the attractor nymphs much better than going natural. During the overcast days, we have had decent dry fly activity on BWO’s.


Small #20 BWO Nymphs common for the Wild Streams in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Great Smoky Mountain National Park Streams (Deep Creek)

Rain events have been plentiful throughout the park thus far for the annual rainfall. The good news is that the rain causes the park streams to rise and fall rather quick. The park streams rarely run off dirty water like the DH streams near more man-made development areas. Nymph fishing has been very good early in the morning or all day long if the temps remain cold. If the air temps hit 50 degrees and higher than you start to get hatches. Check out the hatch report for typical bugs coming off for April.

Upper Nantahala River

The upper Nanty has trout dispersed all over likely holding locations! They have had plenty of time to move around since October. The upper usually produces some of the best hatches to be found in all of western NC! The same bugs you find coming off in the National Park can be found on the Upper-just more prolific!

Use the hatch report to find out what may be happening during April. The activity of bugs popping off really depends on the air temps as well. The upper is like an ICE BOX during the winter months because it receives very little sunshine. Dress accordingly during the early spring months because it can be cold even in late April depending on the wind.

Lower Nantahala

Opening day was April 1st this season. The lower Nanty rarely disappoints with some great fishing! It is fantastic regardless of generation schedules. The main trick is numbers will increase when there is no generation by fishing smaller size flies. It is common to stay on #18 and smaller when it is low water.

One of the main benefits of the lower is that it usually runs clearer than most of the other larger rivers in the area. It has been fishing great all spring!

When there is full generation then #10 -#16 size flies are common. The streamer game can be great when the timing is right and the fish willing to chase. Looking forward to tossing the big stuff in a few days.