There is nothing quite like the memory of the time you caught your very first fish.  Whether you were a child or just felt like a child at heart, there is something very special about the moment when you fought the flipping and flopping to eventually land your first fish.  You can re-live that same memory with a trip to the NC Smokies of Haywood to cast your line on the Mountain Heritage Trout Waters.

The program was established by North Carolina in 2007 to encourage trout fishing as a heritage tourism offering and needless to say, it was a big hit! Every year, both novice and experienced anglers flock to the pristine rivers and streams of Haywood County to cast their lines.  The towns of Maggie Valley and Waynesville are the two access areas in Haywood County where you can fish on the Mountain Heritage Trout waters.Fishing 2Both residents and non-residents of North Carolina who want to fish the designated Mountain Heritage Trout Waters can purchase a 3-day license for only $5.00! Keep in mind the license is valid only for waters that have been designated as Mountain Heritage Trout Waters, but with multiple access points through Haywood County, you won’t have a problem finding the perfect fishing hole. This special 3-day license can be purchased online at www.ncwildlife.org or by telephone Monday – Friday, 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM at 888-248-6834.

Don’t have a trusty rod and reel? No worries! Stop by the Haywood County Visitor Center at 1110 Soco Road and pick up a free tackle box filled with lures or flies and borrow either a fly rod or a spinner rod. It’s the perfect opportunity to brush up on your skills or share the joys of fishing our local streams and rivers with someone for the first time.

If you’re not familiar with the access points of the Mountain Heritage Trout Waters, we’ve got you covered on that one as well.  Visit NC Smokies offers a free Mountain Heritage Trout Waters map that highlights the access points throughout Maggie Valley. On the map you’ll also find another unique trail – the Plott Dog Trail, which tells the story of the official state dog of North Carolina, the Plott Hound. These incredible dogs originated in Haywood County and have left their mark on the area’s history and heritage. The trail traces the history of the dog throughout Maggie Valley and includes some pretty incredible landmarks that are well worth the visit.

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And don’t forget that Haywood’s five towns — Maggie Valley, Waynesville, Canton, Clyde and Lake Junaluska — are conveniently located within the county and serve as the perfect base camp to launch your adventures from. Make plans to stay the night in one of the five towns and enjoy local craft breweries, an eclectic culinary scene, live music venues, fun festivals, and much more. To plan your next excursion in Haywood County visit www.visitncsmokies.com