This month’s Instagram Takeover features Boone, North Carolina-based fly fisher Katie Cahn. You might recognize Katie from the March issue of Blue Ridge Outdoors where she is featured prominently. She spends much of her time with a fly rod in hand, combing the rivers and streams of Western North Carolina in search of wily brook, rainbow and brown trout. Lucky for us she documents her adventures on Instagram.

Follow along as we feature some of Katie’s favorite Instagram posts this week, and get to know the girl behind the March cover a little better with our Q & A below the photos.

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“There’s so much beauty in the world, you just have to find it. I would start in Western North Carolina.”

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“Drying off.”

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“Upstream.”

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“Easing my soul. One rainbow at a time.”

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“What you can’t see in this photo is the bald eagle that graced me with its presence or the kingfishers and pileated woodpeckers that tolerated my presence. Or the big brown I had on that literally spit the fly out into my face.”

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“Is it fall yet?”

Q & A with Katie

BRO: How did you get into fly fishing?

KC: I had always “fished,” but never practiced the art of angling.  I started dating a guy who fly fished and this was at the time I was going to school at WCU. For three years I lived 50 yards from the Tuckasegee River.  Within that time, I spent many study breaks at the river fly fishing. During those years I got to know the Tuckasegee, Nantahala and a few other undisclosed streams pretty well.

BRO: Do you have a favorite fly?

KC: Yeah, it’s that green, red, and yellow sparkly one with the bead head in my fly box that I haven’t lost yet.  I’m kidding, but really, my favorite way to fish is with dry flies. There’s nothing like having a trout come up to the surface for a fly.  It takes my breath away.

BRO: Where do you do most of your fishing?

KC: I fish mainly upstream in tight rhododendron and mountain laurel thickets where people tend to not go. I try to stay away from crowds. When I fish, I’m looking for solitude. There’s nothing worse than having some person walk up on your fishing hole, and I think any angler would agree to that.

BRO: Got a favorite fish story you’d like to share?

KC: One story that comes to mind is a time I was fishing on the Tuck. I was in one of my secret spots and this amazing hatch was going off. There were mayflies everywhere. This was in July of last year so the temperature of the water was stressing the fish. I fought this big, beautiful, wild rainbow for what felt like 10 minutes. When I finally netted it I could tell it was spent. It took about 3 minutes to revive, but when it finally got the strength to swim away from my hands, my heart melted. I share this story because there were no photos from that day, it was just me and the essence of nature.

BRO: If you could choose only one river to fish for the rest of your life what would it be?

KC: This is a hard one. Each river I fish has so many different qualities, but the one that does come to mind, I wouldn’t tell you the name of it (wink wink).

BRO: If you could fish anywhere in the world for one day where would it be?

KC: Patagonia, baby!

BRO: One piece of fly fishing gear you wouldn’t head into the woods without…

KC: I wouldn’t go fly fishing without my hemostats. Some people might say their felt soul boots or their favorite rod and reel, but for me, being able to quickly crush a barb or gently release a hook from a trout’s mouth is crucial.

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