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Turning Stone’s Fly Fishing guides offer waded fly fishing trips on many different streams, rivers, and creeks across western North Carolina.

The areas we fish vary from dense Rhododendron forests with small tributaries meandering about that are filled with tiny wild brook trout, to large rivers that are rough and tumbling that hold enormous, wild brown trout. We also frequently fish areas that are stocked with massive fish that increase your odds of catching a monster.

We mainly guide wade trips on 3 different rivers, but we sometimes go off the beaten path based on the experience of the angler, and the current conditions.

Under “Where We Fish” is a rundown of the rivers and areas we frequently fish. Click on the name for even more details about each area’s unique benefits, beauty, fish varieties available, and challenges.

Here's a quick rundown of a few of our sites.

Big Snowbird Creek has a large population of wild and stocked fish. One of the stretches we fish the most is under delayed harvest regulations from the 1st of October through the 1st Saturday in June every year. At that time it is "catch and release" single hook artificial only. It also has a run of steelhead and houses a large population of brook trout way up high in the system.  

This stretch of water is located in Graham County, which is one of the more remote parts of western North Carolina. It is located near the towns of Murphy, Hayesville, Andrews, Topton, Franklin, Bryson City, Robinsville, Cherokee, and Whittier. The close counties to the Nantahala River are Clay, Macon, Jackson, Swain, and Graham counties.

See more about Big Snowbird Creek.

The Chattooga River is near the town of Highlands. It’s a remote stretch of river and is truly one of the most scenic rivers in North Carolina and North Georgia.  

This river provides an angler with the opportunity to catch very large wild browns. 

We try to keep the fishing pressure during the summer to a minimum so we typically only guide here during the winter. This stream is only for experienced anglers. This is the closest river to Clayton, Georgia.

See more about the Chattooga River.

The Cullasaja River doesn’t receive as much fishing pressure but has a good population of wild rainbow trout and a decent number of wild brown trout. 

This is definitely one of the most beautiful rivers we have. 

The Cullasaja River has several waterfalls that definitely make it worth a visit. You’ll enjoy this stream and the immense beauty that surrounds it. 

Most of the stream runs inside a gorge with stone walls that surround you.  We tend to guide on this mostly in the winter as it gets warm throughout the summer. This is conveniently located near Sylva, Franklin, Highlands, Cashiers, and Waynesville. It is close to Macon, Haywood, and Jackson counties. 

See more about the Cullasaja River.

The Hiwassee River is close to Hayesville, Murphy, and Andrews, NC. We often fish near Mission Dam. 

This river provides the opportunity for large wild rainbows, and has some browns mixed in as well.

See more about Hiwassee River.

The Nantahala River is an excellent classroom for beginners. There are 2 main sections of the river. These 2 sections are separated by a power plant. Above the power plant there are numerous stocked fish at certain times of the year, and a plentiful amount of wild fish year round. At the powerhouse, a large pipe brings water down from Lake Nantahala. The water comes from the bottom of the lake which makes it very chilly year round. 

Below the powerhouse, many rafters and kayakers spend time on the river. This stretch of river also has some of the best brown trout in the east. The Nantahala tailwater is also loaded with wild rainbows, which are some of the prettiest fish in western North Carolina.

While fishing here you will enjoy being surrounded by the steep mountain terrain of the Nantahala Gorge. It is a wonderful setting and one of the prettiest rivers that we fish. 

It is located near the towns of Murphy, Hayesville, Andrews, Topton, Franklin, Bryson City, Robinsville, Cherokee, and Whittier. The close counties to the Nantahala River are Clay, Macon, Jackson, Swain, and Graham counties.

See more about Nantahala River.

This area flows directly out of the Great Smoky Mountain National Park and is partially on the Cherokee Indian Reservation. This stretch of river is stocked with massive numbers of fish. Most of the fish stocked in the fly fishing only section are monsters. 

This is an absolute must for a fly fisherman who likes to have a chance at giant fish. 

This river doesn’t require a North Carolina fishing license, but requires a Cherokee tribal trout license. This is convenient to Jackson, Macon, Haywood, and Swain Counties.

See more about the Raven Fork of the Oconaluftee River.

The Tuckasegee River is commonly fished between the town of Dillsboro and Sylva in Jackson County, North Carolina. This is big water with lots of stocked fish. 

Anglers have the chance at catching lots of fish, and there are big fish spread throughout. 

This river is often called “The Tuck.” It is located near Western Carolina University and is convenient to Highlands, Cashiers, Waynesville, Sylva, Maggie Valley, and Dillsboro. This is a classic southern trout tailwater.

See more about the Tuckasegee River.

We also fish lots of streams that are small and off the beaten path. 

To reduce fishing pressure, we don’t disclose the names of these areas. 

This provides anglers with a secluded day on a small stream with little foot traffic. These are found throughout western North Carolina.

See more about our undisclosed locations.

The West Fork of the Pigeon River headwaters flows from scenic Mount Hardy, NC, just off the Blue Ridge Parkway. You will find every type of trout in this river, including brook, browns, and rainbows.

While this section is hatchery supported and stocked often, you will still find plenty of wild brown, rainbow, and brook trout.

See more about West Fork of the Pigeon River.