To get away from the salt flats and change up the scenery we took a quick 11 hour drive to beautiful North Carolina; the Ole Florida crew was ready to take those mountain trout. Mike, Richie and Bert set out to do one night at casting for recoveries lodge with Tucker Horn who invited us to come fish his water and two nights camping in the mountains. Richie has fished spring trout for the last three years in Montana and was looking forward to fishing some new territory in NC. Here is a little about the weather, fishery and the gear we had and needed to catch some BEAUTIFUL rainbow and brown trout for a extended weekend!
Spring time | Weather and Tactics.
This trip we battled the weather in NC. Sporadic showers were present mostly in the night time which bumped up the rivers making slow drifts a bit faster than desired and also dirtied up the water for a better portion of the morning; making streamer fishing really productive in the earlier hours and as the water cleared and slowed down, going back to dry dropper or indicator fishing. The trout stocking was taking place which closed down some rivers to allow the trout time to settle. Knowing fishing laws in the area you are fishing is absolutely crucial any time of the season.
Staying dry with some good rain gear is crucial and essential with sporadic showers in the spring. A good rain jacket like the PATAGONIA MEN’S TORRENTSHELL is an extremely solid jacket at an affordable price to keep you dry. Make sure you have some solid waders and a nice pair of wading boots. Walking all day in rivers can be a chore with poor footwear leading to blisters and leaky or a tear in your waders can ruin your trip. Have a large selection of trout flies, larger than you think you will need because you are going to lose a lot of them (Mainly due to trees if you are us) These 5 flies proved to be the most productive after throwing everything else without as much luck.
Tungsten Pats rubber Legs
Kure’s Squirrel Micro Zonker
Tungsten rainbow warrior
Egg sucking leach
These flies are proven to be effective in most trout fishing situations and areas. One of the biggest factors is the weight of flies to fish the water column where fish are “staging” Having a good choice of weight range in your flies will prove to be very helpful on the water. Richie was throwing a 5 weight Scott radian, paired with a lamson speedster and Rio gold fly line which is an incredible outfit for dry dropper or indicator fishing. Mike was using a 6+ Sage payload with an Abel Tr for bigger streamers a majority of the time (go figure salt junkie) Tucker was fishing a European nymph style rod, tightlining and it was very effective fishing small, heavy “tactical” nymphs mainly on jig hooks. Make SURE you have a net as it allows you to land, remove and handle your fish so much easier. A rubber basketed net dipped in the water before putting a fish inside of it is safest for the fish and will not harm them.
We were lucky to be fishing with beautiful backdrops, cooler weather, and good company.
Getting a totally different change of fishing style with only an 11 hour drive. We moved around and fished across the state without really ever having a plan, just a few buddies and an extended weekend to do what we pleased. Some big trout were caught on this trip (along with some tiny ones) but the experience of it all with just a short drive away that most people can do, is something that everyone should take advantage of. A big thanks to Darren (The most bad A$$ trout fishermen)for letting us take this adventure and for having a store that has all the gear from giant saltwater tarpon, permit, bonefish to tiny spring creek brookies, browns and rainbows!