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  #21  
Old 11-13-2008, 01:52 PM
MtnMike MtnMike is offline
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Default Big Fish, very crowded

I fished the trophy section last week. I landed what may be (in terms of size anyway) the fish of a lifetime. I did not get an accurate measurement of the fish, but lets just say it should have been measered in pounds rather than inches. It was a monster rainbow. I had a camera but didn't get a picture. A couple in my church had taken me over there to give it a try, so I did have witnesses! The fish are really stacked up in just a handful of runs. There were 3 of us and we had to share a run. We spread out enough to make it work without distrubing the water that another angler would be fishing. I was throwing to some fish in the slack water beside the run while my buddies wife fished the run from the opposite side of the stream and he was up in the head of the run in a really good spot to swing streamers and nymphs. I was fortunate that the largest fish I saw was the one that ate my fly. Later on I saw a couple of fish that were easy 6 inches longer and half again as wide. My buddy caught 2 large ones on streamers. I stuck one of the Palaminos but broke it off on the hook-set. It looked to be close to 20" and cleared water 4 times after I snapped it off. I talked to several guys who said the fish were getting tougher. One guy told me he had caught 60 the week before with 6 being true trophy status. The day I was there he said that he had landed 3 fish. We did catch several in the 12-14" range. While I enjoyed it, I will have to say it was simply too crowded for me. You better be prepared to share a single run with several anglers. Some will ask "permission", others want. It's not that there were that many anglers there it was simply that the fish are stacked up in specific stretches and if you want a shot at one that it where you better be.

Mike
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  #22  
Old 11-13-2008, 01:59 PM
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Carolina Boy Carolina Boy is offline
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Yea I live over here and have fished it twice, talked to the biologist the other day and they are looking to expand the section another couple miles next year. the fish are wising up but if you spend some time out there you can pick up a few secrets to getting the big ones. I got more than my sahre this past Tuesday, weekends are definetly more crowded. This rain should spread em out a bit..maybe?
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  #23  
Old 11-13-2008, 04:03 PM
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Worrgamesguy Worrgamesguy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ttas67 View Post
I fished it the other day. we saw officials, they said "Hi" but didn't check us.

Fishing for the big guys was as technical as any other high-pressure trophy stream I've fished. My impression is that these fish have become quickly educated. I caught some of the rainbows, but was unable to land one of the golden trout. I think people are targeting them a little more (I was at least) and they have therefore gotten smarter than their rainbow counterpart.

Other than the larger fish, they've stocked some normal size fish in there as well. there is excellent fishing to be had for rainbows, browns, and brooks in the 12-16" range.

what's to keep these fish from running into the park?
They stocked with goldens? NO WAY!!! Awesome! My family and I fish in the WV backcountry, and until now (I guess) it was the only place east of the Rockies with goldies. You think browns are spooky? Hah, golden trout put them to shame.
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  #24  
Old 11-13-2008, 04:18 PM
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There is huge riff between the park and the tribal whatever you want call it that is putting these fish in there. The section starts where the Luftte and the Raven fork connect, ie...once the rain comes and the fish wash down stream they can head right up the Luftte and into the park..Not a good thing going between the two sides from what the Cherokee Biologist told me.
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  #25  
Old 11-13-2008, 04:21 PM
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Carolina Boy Carolina Boy is offline
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Hey Worrgamesguy, you ever fish the ELK, I was looking at the Elk Springs lodge up there in WVA, wanted to know what you thought about it if ya know! Thanks
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  #26  
Old 11-13-2008, 04:58 PM
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Originally Posted by Worrgamesguy View Post
They stocked with goldens? NO WAY!!! Awesome! My family and I fish in the WV backcountry, and until now (I guess) it was the only place east of the Rockies with goldies. You think browns are spooky? Hah, golden trout put them to shame.
Trey,
These are not true Golden trout like you find out west. These are palomino trout. It is just a rainbow trout with a slight genetic deformity. They kind of remind me of what an albino trout would look like.

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  #27  
Old 11-13-2008, 07:31 PM
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Thanks for clearing that up Travis. I've been calling them goldens and palominos. wasn't sure which was correct.
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  #28  
Old 11-15-2008, 01:11 PM
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The golds are definitely spooky, not only from your perspective - seeing them in the water--but also their temperment toward artificials. A freind and I returned 11-4 and I got lucky casting a sz 14 bhpt into a pretty swift run to come up with this Golden. (See Avatar. I couldn't figure out how to insert a picture into this text). I was told their unusual color is a regressive gene trait. Also, a fishing friend in NJ told me they had caught similar "blue" rainbows. Anyone hear of these?
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  #29  
Old 01-26-2011, 03:09 PM
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Brutus Brutus is offline
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Just an update. I was in Cherokee last May 2010 and heard from a dependable person who works not far from the Raven that a disgrunted fishery employee killed off all the tribes big breeder fish after he was fired. So if the fishing is not quite as good as it was, this may be the reason. I am sure it will only be a temporary set back for their enterprise.
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  #30  
Old 01-26-2011, 06:18 PM
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Most of the trophy section is on the Raven's Fork above the confluence with the Luftee. I guess the tribe also designated the waters on the Big-O from the confluence down to the rez as part of the trophy section. That used to be park land under park rules.

They put some big brood fish in the river and they are migrating upstream on the Big-O to spawn in the fall (browns and brookies). Some of the rainbow brooders I saw released were about fifteen pounds or better. My friend Fred who is a tribal member took me to the hatchery a few years ago to see it. Amazing fish! Since then they have added on and made numerous improvements to the operation. They do raise some nice stockers and put a lot of big fish in the river. I caught a 12 pound brookie last fall that I thought was going to destroy my graphite fly rod. But luckily it didn't.

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