View Full Version : Big Snowbird Creek

07-21-2009, 01:09 PM
I would love to do an overnighter above the falls, anyone have any recent reports on water levels, hatches, so forth.

07-21-2009, 01:41 PM
I think if you use the forum's search feature, you will find a plethora of seasonal information, including one of the most in-depth and best written stream reports we have.

Jim Casada
07-21-2009, 07:10 PM
Patrick--You don't say which falls (there are actually three on Big Snowbird--Mouse Knob, Middle Falls, and Upper Falls) but I assume you mean Mouse Knob. I have a whole bunch of thoughts/suggestions, having fished the stream untold numbers of times.
1. Don't camp above the falls near Mouse Knob Branch; instead, camp lower down where the trail crosses Sassafras. It's a lovely campsite and you have access to some fine wild 'bows and browns as well as specks just an easy hike upstream above the falls. For that matter, sassafras is full of specks, and it has a waterfall of its own.
2. Worrying about hatches is a non-factor, IMO. Specks will hit about anything, with gaudy attractors like a Royal Wulff, Royal Trude, Jim Charley, or Tennessee wulff being just the ticket. If you cast reasonably well, use a dropper like a Copper John or a Prince nymph in tandem.
3. As for water levels, Big Snowbird has always held its level exceptionally well. You don't have to worry about skinny water; quite the opposite if anything. As an old-time Graham County fisherman once said, "It can rain out of a hornet's nest on Big Snowbird," and a really heavy downpour can get the stream up in a hurry. I have all too powerful memories of one trip, when camped at Mouse Knob, when it was questionable whether we would get out or not. The water wasn't much below the footlog crossing. On another occasion a good friend of mine who is a Graham County native and the best fly fisherman I've seen in the mountains, Marty Maxwell, spent 36 hours on the wrong side of Sassafras (which you can normally rock-hop across) because of torrential rains.
4. If you are willing to walk far enough to get above the Middle Falls (you definitely should get to them, at the least--it's a spectacular sight and setting) 100 fish days are a real possibility here. It is a long hike, however.
Hope this helps a bit, and I would conclude by adding that you are venturing to what, in my opinion, is the finest speck water anywhere in North Carolina. Jim Casada

07-22-2009, 08:38 AM
Patrick, not sure if you found it, but John has done an excellent job on this report http://littleriveroutfitters.com/forum/showthread.php?t=6397

It has some very entertaining pictures, although some have vanished, and the stream information is priceless.

I hope he continues to update us with his success in the area, as it has easily been my favorite read on this site.

07-22-2009, 08:59 AM
Thanks Jim and Granny for the info extremely helpful in making my decision to go or not go, we're going. Thanks for the camping area also we had sorta planned to walk up pick a spot fish till dark get up head up stream and spend the day and pick our stuff up on the way out. That area would suit that plan perfectly. Again thanks for the help I will post how it goes.

07-29-2009, 11:44 PM
I have to thank Granny Knot for the compliment on my posts! PatO, how was your weekend (guessing you went last weekend)?? I saw a Knox Co tag and Ga TU tag at the trailhead last Thr or Fri.
We spent the week over there last week (summer vacation). The water was good, both for flow and temp. The temps ran from 54 (morning) to 62 (afternoon) degrees the whole week. I mostly fished on Snowbird (below the confluence of big and little). I did get up to the backcountry one day, Thursday I think. I walked in about 10 minutes and got in the creek. I spent the day (10:00am to 4:00pm) covering about a 1/3 of a mile or water ..... and taking a beating! I only managed 4 fish, lost a few more. I threw everything but M-80's at them..... they laughed! I will post some pics when I get them downloaded from my camera, should have done that before starting this post.
On the lower creek (below the confluence of big and little) I had more luck, but spent a lot more time down there. Most of the fish I brought to hand were small wild fish on dries. Mostly fished yellow seducers (size 12 to 6) or pale elk hair caddis (14). I never fished any lighter than 4x, maybe should have. Look for obscure pockets with a little more depth. Start at the back of a big run and work your way to the head. Several times I caught chubs in the tail of a run or pool and would raise a decent brown in the head. Then again my best fish if the trip a 15" brown came from the tail of run (I had seen that fish a few weeks ago in the hole right below the one where I caught it, he inspected my fly three times on three drifts..... and would not eat!). That was on an overcast day with clearing, but stained water, he took the # 6 seducer.
I will post some pics a little later.

08-05-2009, 09:35 AM
I haven't made it up to the trail yet, church youth group trip, son starting kindergarten, all those things that can derail a plan. Hate to hear that about the slow action a little up stream but it will probably be closer to Sept. before I get there any way and a lot can change by then. Thanks for all the info and I will definitely post after we get back.

08-06-2009, 12:34 PM
Absolutely, don't let my slow day discourage you. I might have been holding my mouth wrong, making too much noise or maybe just a slow day. There were a couple of other fellows who were heading in right behind me, would like to know how they fared. They were gone when I got back to the parking area. It's fishing, sometimes good, sometimes just good to get out. Hope your son likes kindergarten.
Tight lines,