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Byron Begley
05-01-2010, 12:17 PM
It is my understanding that TWRA is giving consideration to removing the special regulations on the Hiwassee River. I just received a copy of a letter sent to the agency by one of my friends. If this is something that near and dear to you it might be a good idea to look into this and respond.

Sport Fishing Comments
Management Division
P.O. Box 40747
Nashville, Tn. 38555

Travis Scott
Wildlife Manager I
Streams and Pond Management Region III
464 Industrial Blvd
Crossville, Tn. 38555

ChemEAngler
05-01-2010, 01:55 PM
Byron,

Thanks for the information. Haven't been down there in a couple years, but do remember it being a fantastic fishery for a few years before the drought.

Can't say that I like that idea, but I haven't heard many positive reports coming out of the trophy section in a long time anyway. There is some amazing water in the trophy section, however the shore was typically lined with corn cans and Styrofoam containers.

As flyfisherman we generally want to see tighter regulations on all fisheries, however that isn't the way TWRA works. I guess my primary complaint is why do we eliminate a potential put-grow-take fishery when Tellico and Citico are already in the same vicinity to supply the put & take crowd? I will send an email about this.

David Knapp
05-01-2010, 02:05 PM
Thanks for the heads up Byron. Definitely good to know about this before they actually make the changes...

Here is an article (http://polknewsonline.com/2010/04/27/Outdoor_Sporting/Wildlife_commitee_supports_changes/7113.html) I just found to clarify a bit. Definitely something that those who enjoy the Hiwassee should consider. I personally don't think its the best idea. On the other hand, the lack of enforcement is a joke which may be one of the prime reasons the trophy section has not lived up to its potential. The other problem is the water temperatures during the summer. That is an issue that won't be going away. The delayed harvest idea is a good one IF they will enforce it...I just don't see that part happening unfortunately...

mcfly
05-02-2010, 02:01 AM
From the article..."The letter further states the committee is pleased that the trophy stream could be abolished and looks forward to the economic opportunities that the extended live and artificial bait regulations will provide to businesses in the county. It states that an opening day scenario when the delayed harvest ends can be used to promote the river and provide guided fishing companies the same, if not more, opportunity as the trophy stream did in the past. It adds the delayed harvest will be hard for some who cannot take their catch home but the overall benefit will be better than the current scenario."

I may be wrong, but it looks like the real reason for eliminating the reg's is that TWRA wants to cater to the bait crowd.

Owl
05-02-2010, 03:14 AM
I'm not so sure they want to cater to the bait crowd, but it sounds like the folks pushing it might be the local bait shops, cabin rental places, etc. They want to put money into the economy though - and I'm not sure the average fisherman who buys a can of corn and takes his place on "the wall" is going to put more into the local economy than a bunch of fly-fishing purists! :) LOL

I haven't been to the Hi since they doubled the price of an out of state license.


And that might explain why a special regs stream in a little valley like that hasn't seen as many anglers - and the revenue is down for the locals. Might, I say....because that is just a guess.

I do know that I'm not the only Georgia fisherman that has not had 3 states' worth of licenses since they went nuts with the fees. Almost every fishin buddy I had that had a TN lic. chose not to renew it. I mean, when I can fish all of NC and the GSMNP for $40, why would I want to pay nearly twice that to fish the Hi? TN has some great water, but that license fee increase really stuck it to the tourist fishermen and that may not be the reason for the purposed change, but it sure couldn't have helped the situation around the Hi, I wouldn't think...

PeteCz
05-02-2010, 09:40 AM
"Committee members John Qualls and Joe Akins said the people they have talked to are in agreement with the suggested changes, especially getting rid of the trophy trout section. Akins said fishermen are tickled they will get to go back to Devil’s Shoals to fish. Under the current trophy trout rules, a portion of the river is off limits for bait fishermen."

I guess fly-fishermen don't count in Polk County...

Out of State License Fees: (Fishing+Trout)
NC $30+10 = $40
TN $41+18 = $59
GA $45+20 = $65

Owl, Most of us up here, have the same sentiment towards fishing in GA. It would be nice to fish new areas, but at $65 per year, it doesn't seem worth it...My guess is that the politicos think they can make more money on the casual fishers who are already coming into the area (on vacation, etc.) and zapping them with the high fees, rather than keeping the fees low and attracting more folks...