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South Holston River

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2007/6/24 16:25
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I'm considering a trip to the South Holston River in Eastern Tennessee for the first week of July. Looking for feedback about the fishing experience from anyone who has fished this river. I know it isn't wadeable when they are generating water, and I know it has a reputation for selective trout.

Posted on: 2013/6/12 21:16


Re: South Holston River

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2012/3/14 23:03
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Posted on: 2013/6/12 21:52


Re: South Holston River

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2009/4/26 12:29
From Lancaster, PA
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You should definitely check it out, you will not be disappointed. I did some of work in NC over a year ago, a buddy I worked with fished the Holston all the time. I got out with him 3 or 4 times and it was awesome! The fishing and wading is definitely dependent on when they are generating water from the dam. If you hit the generation schedule right you have a good chance at getting into a good sulphur hatch. My buddy was just there over the weekend and had a 50-60 fish day, most on top on dry flies. The fish can be selective, but you can catch fish.

There is a great guide we used a few times we went - Jeff Wilkins (http://jeffwilkinsflyfishing.wordpress.com/fishing-reports-2/). Jeff is very knowledgeable and his prices are very good. My buddy uses him several times a year. I've fished on the Holston with him twice and other places in NC a few times. The link above is for his Fishing Reports, but from there you can explore the rest of his site and see when he may be available.

You can also check out the South Holston River Fly Shop (http://southholstonriverflyshop.com/). Great little shop with friendly, knowledgeable staff. They do offer float trips on high water. I've never done one, but my buddy has. You can find info about that as well.

I've had great days with sulphur dries & emergers, but you can also catch them nymphing. Jeff has had some great days with beetles as well. You will see if you check out his reports page.

Feel free to PM me with any questions

Posted on: 2013/6/13 10:13


Re: South Holston River

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2008/2/12 16:36
From New Cumberland
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16 of us from Cumb Valley TU did a 4 day Trip there several weeks ago. WOW. We stayed in cabins right below the damn. Incredible top water action. Sulphers and olives. We came back wondering why we trek out west every year. You have to fish around the release schedule though and the TVA didnt stick to their planned schedule. When you hear the first siren, start to move to the correct side of the river. When you hear the second siren, pay attention because the water starts coming up fast. We had one day that water was released all day so we went into the mountains to fish. The Cvtu latest newsletter on its web site has more info.

Posted on: 2013/6/13 11:17


Re: South Holston River

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2012/6/4 23:13
From Pittsburgh
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I heartily second elonDO's advice. Jeff Wilkins is a great guide and resource. He is very patient and helpful, and knows the water thoroughly.
The South Holston is a prolific tailwater fishery and beautiful country. Wade fishing is great, and I might add that during generation and high water, drift boat fishing is the answer.
You will not be disappointed. Fish are plentiful and there are some trophy streambred browns and rainbows to be pursued.
Good luck !

Posted on: 2013/6/13 11:25


Re: South Holston River

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2012/11/30 11:55
From Pittsburgh, PA
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East Tennessee is my old stomping grounds. The South Holston Tailwater is an absolutely incredible fishery and you will certainly have an enjoyable time. The first few miles below the weir dam have the biggest, most reliable hatches and the most public access (mostly via trails) and the most crowds. However, don't discount the 10 miles or so below that (i.e. below Hickory Tree bridge). There are tremondous numbers of trout all the way down to Bluff City and you can find just about any type of water you like to fish and fewer crowds. Check out the Big Springs road area. TONS of roadside access. That said, even if the river is crowded, there are so many trout that you only need a small section to work and have a days worth of trout to cast to.

If they are generating at the dam you usually have several hours of fishing in the mid and lower river before the water comes up. Otherwise, as others have mentioned, floating is your only option during a long generation. The fishing is just as good or better during generation.

My last tidbit of advice is try to hit the upper river (i.e. just below the weir dam) just as the water is falling after generation or a pulse. The trout seem the most aggressive and drifts are easier if the water is a bit high.

Posted on: 2013/6/13 16:35


Re: South Holston River
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2006/9/9 9:29
From Monessen, PA
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The tailwater anglers are very understanding of and have a good relationship with the TVA. All interests are properly respected. TVA is about power generation first, with a concurrent (and consequent) obligation of flood control. The trout fishery is respected, however, but still secondary. That said, if you know the schedule, you can have a terrific experience for mostly stocked trout, I believe. But large, rising trout at that. Enjoy.

Posted on: 2013/6/13 20:52
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I don't like spinach, and I'm glad I don't, because if I liked it I'd eat it, and I just hate it. --Clarence Darrow


Re: South Holston River

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2012/6/4 23:13
From Pittsburgh
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FYI. The South Holston has a mix of stream bred and stocked rainbows, which were put in as fingerlings. However, all brown trout, which predominate, are natural, and they get quite large. No browns have been stocked since 2003.

Posted on: 2013/6/13 22:57


Re: South Holston River
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From Monessen, PA
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Thanks for correcting me. That is good news. I was down that way in the late 80s. I didn't fish it but was under the belief it was mostly a stocked fishery, but a healthy one at that.

Posted on: 2013/6/14 8:03
_________________
I don't like spinach, and I'm glad I don't, because if I liked it I'd eat it, and I just hate it. --Clarence Darrow


Re: South Holston River

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2006/12/3 21:01
From Mechanicsburg, Pa
Posts: 478
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I would also mention that the headwaters of the South Holston in Virginia has a nice wild rainbow fishery. Something to keep in mind in case the Tennessee fishing is hampered. The hatches are wacky too. Sulphers hatching in February and March seems almost unnatural.

Posted on: 2013/6/14 9:12






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