Fly Fish the South Holston

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You’ll catch ’em bigger than this baby brown on the Holston.

Summer is hitting the dog days and usually that means the fly-fishing in the South slows down. This does not mean you can’t find quality trout fishing during the peak of summer heat, however. With the rib of the Appalachians serving as the Blue Ridge swamp cooler, and dams that release the cold water from the bottom of their depths, rivers in the South can hold fish all year long. One of the best and most prestigious is the South Holston from the dam to Bluff City, TN. This stretch of river holds the biggest brown trout in the area and stays cool enough that you can fish top water all summer. If the dry fly bite is off, don’t be afraid to drop a big streamer down to those lazy trout at the bottom of the river.

Get there: If you are floating the river, put in at the dam and float the 13-miles to Bluff City. If you are wading, make sure you check the dam release schedule before heading out. The river is shallow for its width, but the water can rise quickly if water is released.

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