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Thread: Fishing ranch in eastern TN - good idea?

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
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    Knoxville, Tennessee
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    1,569

    Talking

    Something I don't think you have considered.

    The 2 places you see people have mentioned are CO and VA. Colorado has more lawsuits and arguments over water rights (access, right to water, etc) and is the only place I know of where boaters are really kept off where its enforceable to create what you are talking about. In Virginia, you can argue though Kings Grant (land was given from before US existed, and with Kings Grant you do own the whole stream (no easement below high water mark). In Virginia access is now happening due to some recent law change that I'm not fully aware of

    So unless you are Norton Creek, Hesse. Own all the surrounding land, and have the security to patrol, sounds like a bad idea. Even then I would think you could get into neighbors letting people into streambed where access never enters your property and is below the high water mark. And I know you mentioned its too small for boats so I'm sure you thinking "Non navigable", but I hope you have significant cash reserves to fight that in court. I hope it's smaller than Road Prong as that is certainly navigable by some friends of mine and I know American Whitewater will fight for that. It's a little more grey for fisherman, but I think you will have a hard time finding political support to keep locals away.

    Ooh and would I pay. Heck No! I won't even pay the fee to fish Cherokee! I'm sure you can find tourists to, but enough to support a business model and fight a legal battle, I don't think so.

    Also you aren't allowed to just stock a stream! You will need permits and approval. Talk to Rob Fightmaster if you want to do this. He did Hesse for Blackberry, and knows more than anyone I know on this issue.

    Hope that helps!
    Call me if you want to go fishing, boating, hiking, or if you want to buy a foamie
    www.foamiefriends.com

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
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    Knoxville
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by HuskerFlyFisher View Post
    That part concerns me. The mountain folks around there already have a love/hate relationship with out-of-towners coming in to do such trivial things as fly fish. The culture in some of those parts is another story altogether, albeit an interesting one. But that could in fact be the deal killer.
    There is a lot of truth in that. You would have to have someone living on site at all times to keep an eye on things.

    As soon as word were to get out about having nicer fish, the poaching would be bad IMHO.

    The other issue would be enforcement. Once you start doing that, there's a good chance you will get burned out. Mountain ways are hard to change.

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
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    206

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    Quote Originally Posted by duckypaddler View Post
    Something I don't think you have considered.

    The 2 places you see people have mentioned are CO and VA. Colorado has more lawsuits and arguments over water rights (access, right to water, etc) and is the only place I know of where boaters are really kept off where its enforceable to create what you are talking about. In Virginia, you can argue though Kings Grant (land was given from before US existed, and with Kings Grant you do own the whole stream (no easement below high water mark). In Virginia access is now happening due to some recent law change that I'm not fully aware of

    So unless you are Norton Creek, Hesse. Own all the surrounding land, and have the security to patrol, sounds like a bad idea. Even then I would think you could get into neighbors letting people into streambed where access never enters your property and is below the high water mark. And I know you mentioned its too small for boats so I'm sure you thinking "Non navigable", but I hope you have significant cash reserves to fight that in court. I hope it's smaller than Road Prong as that is certainly navigable by some friends of mine and I know American Whitewater will fight for that. It's a little more grey for fisherman, but I think you will have a hard time finding political support to keep locals away.

    Ooh and would I pay. Heck No! I won't even pay the fee to fish Cherokee! I'm sure you can find tourists to, but enough to support a business model and fight a legal battle, I don't think so.

    Also you aren't allowed to just stock a stream! You will need permits and approval. Talk to Rob Fightmaster if you want to do this. He did Hesse for Blackberry, and knows more than anyone I know on this issue.

    Hope that helps!
    A lot of great points. Just for clarification I wouldn't casually stock water without appropriate permits etc. The point of my thread was just general concepts.

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
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    143

    Default

    Husker, With all due repsect for some of the comments previously posted, the basic issue you need to determine is whether the stream you are targeting is or ever was "navigable" under common and/or Tennessee law in the areas where you want to limit access by "tresspassers".

    If you are serious about the project you need to properly analyze and answer that question correctly before you get too far in your investment. I suggest a lawyer rather than internet hearsay. fwiw

    As to the attitude of "locals" , I think the posters previously are correct in their assessment that good security is imperative. There is frankly and sadly dwindling respect in Tennessee for private property rights when it comes to fish and game.

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
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    We met today and are going to pass on this. We are looking at a 2 mile parcel in southern Colorado that looks to be a much better option. In Colorado, private property is private property. When a stream runs through your ranch, that portion is yours, and you can put a barb wire fence right across it, in case there is any misunderstanding.

    I haven't heard much of trespassing and/or poaching in these situations - not sure what would make CO different from TN but sounds like it is.

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
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    28

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    HuskerFlyFisher,

    If you don't mind/are able to say, what stretch of river were you looking at? It would be great to have something like that, but as everyone has already mentioned, you just about have to have a 24-7 presence to safeguard any private/remote property in this state.

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Posts
    206

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jackrabbit View Post
    HuskerFlyFisher,

    If you don't mind/are able to say, what stretch of river were you looking at? It would be great to have something like that, but as everyone has already mentioned, you just about have to have a 24-7 presence to safeguard any private/remote property in this state.
    2800 feet of Big Creek.

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Jan 2015
    Location
    Newport, TN
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    36

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    Are you referring to actual Big Creek - Waterville area or Gulf Big Creek that flows through Del Rio/Grassy Fork area? Just curious I live in Newport. I fish both of these areas periodically.

  9. #19
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    201

    Default Can be a money maker

    We deal with about all of the rod fee water people from VA to GA. VA rod fees waters did well this year, NC ones did fair and the GA streams (mostly on the Soque really took a blow,

    Low waters are always a problem. So are predators, especially roving bands of otters. I talked to one manager on the Soque who said he stopping counting in August after he had trapped thirty otters. Trespassing bait dunkers are always a threat too.

    The best man to check the enhancement needs of your waters is Monte Seahorn over in GA

    A lot of fly fishermen will cough up $150 to have access to big, semi-literate trout. It's western big waters class fishing with the time, travel and cost of a trip.

    It's like any business; what can you deliver at a cost that is not prohibitive, yet affordable.

  10. #20
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Knoxville
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    242

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    The South Holston has had cabin/frontage for years.
    Fortunately they have beautiful wild trout that "stock" themselves.
    But, even with a limited number of rods on each section, these sections get hit hard nearly EVERY DAY by fairly proficient fishermen.
    I've found that, after fishing these rentals for 10yrs, that these trout have practically gone nocturnal to eat.
    When one fly line hits the water they simply stop eating.
    This may be different on a freestone but these pay areas are producing some nearly non-catchable trout.
    Stocked pigs suck btw.

    4X

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