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Tyler Legg
Charlotte, NC, United States
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Welcome to THFF.com! Kick your wading boots off and stick around for a while. You'll find content ranging from NC fishing reports, videos, pictures, fly fishing news from around the state/country/world, humor, and even some irrelevant, yet interesting posts.
Have a question, comment, fishing report, or a few suggestions regarding THFF or fly fishing in NC? Feel free to e-mail me at wncflyfishing@gmail.com
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Thursday, November 26, 2009
I Arrived in Fancy Gap, VA around 2:00 this afternoon, of course ready to eat some turkey. I did bring my "emergency fly fishing kit" with me, which includes mostly the basics. A cold northwest wind gusting to 30 mph combined with lower 40's and sleet made for a tough 25 minutes. If the temps were a few degrees less, I would be battling my guides icing. I stayed for 25 minutes before packing it in and heading back to the house, about 2 minutes from the pond. The water temps were in the mid 40's, but there was a small area on the north side of the pond that is fed by a spring. This spring contains warm water (I'm guessing around 54-57 degrees). This was the best place to start scouting for cruising rainbows. I went through 3 flies: a streamer, nymph, and a dry with no takers. Regardless I managed to brush up on my casting.

I just stepped outside and noticed there are flakes flying. We might get some heavier flurries or light snow showers closer to daybreak on through about lunch time tomorrow according to the NWS. If the winds don't get too bad tomorrow my grandad and I may hike down to a small stream close to the house that may or may not contain fish. I've hiked down to it before, but I didn't explore extensively. There is a small waterfall on the stream. Us fly fisherman know that waterfalls equal deeper pools and deeper pools equal prime habitat for fish.






I did take a few pictures of one of the best sunsets I've witnessed in a while. The last time I saw one this colorful was back in Ennis, Montana after a rain shower passed through.

Thanks for reading and hope the remainder of your Thanksgiving is great.
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Pretty dreary, cloudy day here in the Tar Heel State. No rain, just gray skies that look as if rain could fall at any moment. For fly fisherman, it's great weather. Blue Winged Olives are known for hatching on days like today. There will be a lot of folks taking time off and traveling this week as Thanksgiving is on Thursday. That usually means you may run into some crowds if you plan on fishing, especially on Saturday.

The area streams in western NC are fishing well as of right now. Delayed Harvest streams such as the Mitchell River, the DH streams at Stone Mtn and South Mtn, Helton Creek, Wilson Creek, etc are fishing exceptional well with recent stockings and good flows. Most of the DH fish can be caught on Pheasant Tail Nymphs, Copper Johns, egg patterns, San Juan Worms, Y2K's, Green Weenies and most bugs in between. Elk Hair Caddis or Stimulator may bring a fish or two up to surface, but don't count on it. Trout are pretty lazy when the water temps get cold.

I may get out to do a little fishing on Thanksgiving day while up in Fancy Gap, VA. Hiking to a private pond that holds rainbows looks to be the best option. Might try it while the bird's in the oven.
Saturday, November 21, 2009
As of now, the fishing can't get much better. Most rivers and streams in the western Carolinas are running above average, but not bad at all. The Davidson River is running at 284 cfs with crystal clear water. If your heading to the hatchery section of the D, bring your midge assortments and 6x-7x tippet. Streams temperatures are chilly right now, but it's nearly December (can't believe it). As we progress into late November and into December, they will only get colder. I noticed some ridiculous air temps for the first week of December on the 15 day.
For Charlotte, NC...

Dec. 1st- Hi 43, Lo 29
Dec 2nd- Hi 39, Lo 29 w/ scattered flurries
Dec 3rd- Hi 34, Lo 23
Dec. 4th- Hi 36, Lo 22
Dec. 5th- Hi 41, Lo 22
Dec. 6th- Hi 41, Lo 34 w/ snow (BIG question mark)


I've watched this forecast change over and over and over again. Almost every new run is suggesting very cold air and possibly some sort of wintry precip on some days. Just a little hype for fellow snow lovers.

Make sure those winter midges and BWO's are ready!! Neoprene wader season is fast approaching.
Saturday, November 14, 2009
Upper 60's to low 70's in most areas are making for some excellent fishing in Western North Carolina. The water levels are still on the high side, but compared to what it looked like earlier this week, the water is looking good. The Tennessee tailwaters are full right now. I'm sure wading will be tough on the South Holston, Clinch, Hiwassee and Watauga for a few days until TVA backs down their generating schedule. Floating the tailwaters is best right now. The Davidson River is at 260 cfs as I type. Normal to date for the D is 93 cfs. Despite high waters, fishing hasn't been bad. Most fish, at least for right now, are being caught on nymphs. Girdle Bugs, Yuk Bugs, Pat's Rubber Legs, Kevin's Stones, etc are doing well given the high water. I would use ugly looking bugs with hackle and rubber legs. The added movement is a killer. Behind your point fly, a pink #12-16 San Juan Worm or a #14-16 Prince will double your chances. The brown trout (and brook trout) are still in spawning mode, so make sure you don't target these guys. David Knapp from The Trout Zone snapped some amazing photos of a two brown trout on a redd. To see them click here.

Alright here's the lowdown...

Davidson River~ The D is pretty high, so be prepared to fish streamer and big bugs. Around the hatchery, midges are working as usual, but you may catch fish on a #20 Pheasant Tail Nymph or a BWO nymph.

Tuckasegee River~ As of 6:30, the Tuck is at 854 cfs. Average to date is 368 cfs. The Tuck is full of fish right now as a result of the DH season. Larger fish are being caught out of the Tuck as well. The usual flies used on most DH streams are going to do well on the Tuckasegee.

NC Side of the Smokies~ Fishing in the Smokies has been great. Bluelining for brook trout or trying the new Raven Fork Catch and Release section are great choices. The bull elk in the Cataloochee area are displaying their antlers.

Oconaluftee River C&R waters~ You need an annual C&R permit and a daily fishing permit (total $27) to fish these waters. It's worth it. The fish are huge and the fishing has been great.

Mitchell River, South Mtn, Stone Mtn DH, Green River~ Fishing has been fantastic on the above DH streams. Again the usual DH flies such as Prince Nymphs, San Juan Worms, Elk Hair Caddis, Para Adams, etc will work.
Tuesday, November 10, 2009


Thanks to all of the veteran's who have fought to defend our nation. The United States of America would not be the USA without them.
Sunday, November 8, 2009
1.) First off Hurricane Ida... She's a Cat two storm with winds of 105 mph and a pressure of 979 mb. Currently, Ida is located just north of the Yucatan Channel between Mexico and Cuba. The relevant aspect of Ida and fly fishing in North Carolina is the possibility of heavy rains. Ida could track up through the Carolinas. It's still too early to tell where Ida will end up going, but like mentiond above, heavy rains may be a problem, meaning full (and the possibility of flushed out rivers) and poor fishing. If you do plan on fishing this week, keep an eye on the weather. If it happens, tailwaters might be unfishable for a few days. I know, I know....but, but, but, but...

2.) Ken Van Every, owner of USAOnTheFly was asking for any photos related to fly fishing in NC. He is currently designing a North Carolina page for USAOnTheFly. I sent him several pictures that he should be able to use on his site. Now, if he needed pictures from California, I would be of no use. Tom Chandler of the Trout Underground would be of use though...To visit USAOnTheFly click here.

3.) 'Bout all I have for now. Doesn't look like I'll be on the water for a week or two. Hopefully around Thanksgiving though (then again, might need to rig up some ice fishing gear...).
Friday, November 6, 2009
The weather can not get much better than what we experienced today. Low to mid 60's across the state (cooler up high) have prevailed. It will get chilly tonight, so if you plan on heading out to hit a stream before daybreak, bundle up. Come to think of it, it's best to fish from about lunch time through the afternoon. This time of year, fishing during the later part of the day is more productive than fishing in the morning. This is when the water temps will be at their warmest and the fish will be most active. Water levels have been great over the last few weeks, so don't worry about finding low water. Usually the typical summer droughts that occur here in NC carry on through the fall months. This is not the case this year, as this summer yielded enough rain to prevent extensive long term drought from happening. This is great for us anglers.

With the exception of the "Hatchery Section" of the Davidson River (I swear those fish don't eat), streamers have been, by far, the best choice in terms of fly selection. Woolly Buggers in olive, black, or brown, Zoo Cougars, Zonkers, Slumpbusters, Sheila Sculpins, Matukas, Muddy Buddies, etc are catching fish. You might try a small #14 or 16 pink San Juan Worm behind a streamer. Sometimes big fish will chase down a large streamer and eventually settle for a smaller offering such as the trailing San Juan Worm or Copper John. If you prefer fishing nymphs over chucking heavy #4 streamers and risking losing your ear, try #14-18 Copper Johns in green, copper, chartreuse, and red. Right now, dry flies are being outnumbered by nymphs and streamers, but fish will still rise to a well presented Elk Hair Caddis, or a #18-22 BWO. Take note of the spawning browns. If you see them guarding their redds, try not to fish for them. They are guarding the next generation of fish that we will attempt to fish for.

If you have or will go fishing, let us know how you did...

Tyler
Monday, November 2, 2009
I left town at 6:30 and arrived at the fly shop at 9:45. The crowds were few and far between around the hatchery section of the D. There were a few anglers, one upstream of me and two downstream. They weren't having any success either. I stopped by Davidson River Outfitters before hitting the water and they told me streamers are a possibility around the hatchery, but everytime one is thrown to the fish, they chase it and then back down and refuse: exactly what happened when I gave a Barr's Slumpbuster a try. The water was unbelievably clear, so it seemed as if 7x was the only size tippet I could use to at least draw some attention to these wily fish. Tough fishing...Great day to be in the mountains though. The fall foliage was at it's peak.

Still narrowing down one of the following:

Top Ten Excuses Used By Fishing Guides When The Fishing Is Lousy by Guy Turck

10. The river is too high/low this time of year
9. The water is too muddy/clear for optimal fishing
8. The water is too fast/slow for your ability level
7. The fish are catatonic today
6. There must have been a full moon last night
5. These trout have lockjaw
4. Too much fishing pressure has the trout running for their lives
3. The barometric pressure must be dropping
2. You're not holding your tongue right

And the number one (MIDI drum roll please) excuse used by fishing guides when the fishing is lousy...

1. You should have been here yesterday.

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