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Thread: Rumors, the Watauga, and the fishing report!

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Alcoa, TN

    Default Rumors, the Watauga, and the fishing report!

    Byron, as part of my daily ritual I look at the fishing report accompanied by a few others. Yester day dad, a friend, and I shot north to finally get some fishing in at the Watauga. We had heard about Sycamore Shoals State Park and started there. We got out of the car to quickly take a look and come back and gear up. On our descent to the water we met up with two local fisherman asked how the water was and continued on path to the water. When we arrived back at the car we were once again greeted by the two fisherman. We talked gingerly about fishing and where we were from. Dad has their names. Both nice gentleman who suggested we fish the trophy section of water. They were nice enought to even jump in their truck and escort us to the section of water they were refering to. What we didn't know was the section of water they were refering to was closed. This we learned from the two prior trips up to the Watauga. We were currently sitting at a campground that lies with in the trophy section of water just above the "Caddis Riffle". We got out of our vehicles while one of the guys called the owner of the Campground. We talked to the other gentelman and gave him some killer flies for their effort! We had our fingers crossed hoping we would be able to fish a section of water that had been closed as of Sept 6th....That would have been some good fishing, I'm sure! Of course it's not completely off limits, but if you don't have a boat it's unfishable! If your not familiar with this area it's just below the steel bridge and about mile (in water) above TWRA's put in! The gentleman that made the call finally got in touch with someone regarding being able to fish that water. Unfortunately we were told the owner of the campground sold the property to a gentleman in Alabama who had local ties to the community (family). The other guy was going to let us take some kick skiff and a canoe of his if we wanted! We decided to just go back to Sycamore. But it was a more than generous offer!

    So yes, the rumors are true. The campground stretches from the steel bridge to about a half mile downstream. It's all private and they way I understand it, the gentleman used to charge $5.00 for parking all day to allow fisherman to fish the water. A closed season there doesn't look good for future fishing there! Maybe he's just trying to make it up here from Alabama to live. And just maybe he doesn't have anyone to watch the campground while he's making the journey? I hope he doesn't close it the winter months and return to Alabama! Let's keep our fingers crossed. Let's hope this is the only year he/she intend's on doing this!

    Don't pass up the opportunity to fish Sycamore Shoals State Park! I didn't get any fishing in there but I could see the potential in the water. Dad faired well, while I put a buddy on some fish. It was slow but dad manage a 9'' brookie and so did my buddy! Beautiful water! No rock snot, this low at this time! Also dad mentioned didymo not being on that tailwater! I believe I saw quite a bit below the Wilbur Dam! Hasn't made it down to the lower sections yet!


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2006

    Default River Ridge Campground

    I only got to fish that section of the river once, a few months back. It was absolutely superb. We caught tons of trout of all three species. The rumor I heard was that the land was sold to a developer from Alabama and he intended to subdivide the land. That will really be disappointing if that is what happens to that beautiful piece of river. The trophy section on the Watauga will be just a memory I am afraid.

    Last time I was down on Hiwassee, I was told that there were a couple of other developments going in along the river there in Reliance. It looks like developers are beginning to see the same things we see in these beautiful locales. I don't know where it will end, with the population boom that is expected to take place in the next 15 years. I have lived around here my whole life and have watched the landscape change so quickly. I have almost talked myself into moving to Utah or Idaho to escape some of the influx of new people who want to make this just like where they came from.

    Nothing frustrates more than hearing people talk about recently moving to East TN and how much they love the scenery, but how they wish there were more shopping malls and restaurants like they had back home. GO BACK HOME THEN. They don't realize that adding them takes away from the supposed charm that brought them here in the first place.

    That was my rant.


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