Fishing Report October 22, 2016

Fall fly fishing at is finest is what’s on tap here on the South Holston and Watauga tailwaters.  Olives on the Taug and Sulphurs on the SoHo as our bugfest 2016 enters the 4th quater.  The main hatch you ask?  Well,  the annual leaf hatch is upon us!!  Pulling leaves off hooks and dodging patches of them and carefully placing your fly in a clear slots as Mother Nature takes them for a ride down our tailwaters.  This sounds fun, right?  The upside is that in a week they will be all gone but the major upside is that the fishing is on fire.  Great fishing conditions and a backdrop only found here in East Tennessee is what you can expect for our year round world class fishery.

Low water and sight fishing for larger trout have been the name of the game on both rivers.  Midges, Scuds and Olive nymphs have all been crushing trout the as they fatten up for the annual spawn.  Streamers?  you can do it but a little more water from TVA and I believe it would be more productive.

From soup to nuts great fishing can be had for the next few months while most anglers are tying flies and getting into that cabin fever mindset. We will be fishing all winter so If you can handle fishing in colder temps we have great fishing covered like a blanket.






We have been asking Mother Nature all summer to bring us some relief from the heat and after months of asking, she finally obliges.  Fall is in the air folks, as the temperatures become cool and the leaves begin their descend the great fishing on the South Holston or Watauga tailwaters will only improve as the pre spawn is just a few weeks away.

The South Holston Sulphur hatch is still happening in the upper stretch and some Olives mixed up in their as well. Fish have been rising in front of the lodge in the mornings as little Olives awaken from their aquatic nap and become a tiny snack.  TVA has not been generating much until the later part of the afternoon giving us the opportunity for some wade fishing or the popular low water float.

The Watauga, Well…..The fishing has been good but the release schedule has been about as reliable as an ashtray on a motorcycle.  Be prepared for conditions to change without notice.  Midges, small Olive nymphs have been bringing fish to the net along with a variety of junk, eggs, worms, mops things like that.

The best time to throw a streamer?    The answer to that is any time!  The spawn will get these fish charged up and ready to protect their redd with extreme prejudice.  Fore those willing to put the time in the rewards can be EPIC!

Do not get cabin fever this year! Come fish our tailwaters with us and see for yourself a true year round fishing destination.

All the Best,







Having two sections of the river close from November 1st to January 31st to let the brown trout of the South Holston and Watauga pro create


Fishing Report September 12, 2016

Surprisingly enough it was hard to believe that even with the largest college football game in history just 7 miles up the road at the Bristol Motor Speedway the South Holston River was like a ghost town this weekend.  On a weekend?  That’s right and the fishing was solid.  While tailgaters and football fanatics were concentrating on pregame preparation the trout on the South Holston were concentrating on my Midge.  If you could stretch out some line and make a good drift they would not let it pass without chomping on the #22.

It looks like TVA will crank the water back up for the next few days after a weekend at low flow.  I like it!!  The high water bite has been great and the dry fly fishing is still presenting itself during these releases.

From soup to nuts, the Watauga and South Holston Rivers are fishing very well and our trout are on the chow for those looking to put a bend in your flyrod or perhaps a little R&R after a long summer.  Let us show you a great experience!!


Until Next Week,

Jon Hooper



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Fishing Report August 31st, 2016

The last few days have been nothing short of spectacular fishing under an indicator on the South Holston.  TVA has been running water in the afternoons giving anglers a peek at both conditions that the SoHo can provide.  The low water midge bite and the high water Sulphur hatch has provided a perfect environment and keeping these fish on the chow!! Dry fly fishing is still presenting itself on a daily basis but make sure your game is tight for these fish have seen plenty of bugs and bad drifts.  Puff Daddys, comparaduns and cripples have all been tricking these fish to the surface.

The Watauga well, could not tell you. The SoHo has been fishing so good there has been no need to make the drive over the mountain but I will be over there this weekend and fill you in on the next report.  Gotta get tying, everyone have a great day!

Stay tuned for next weeks report,


big brown

Fishing Report August 24, 2016

It looks like the heat is back upon us for just a bit as we see the temperatures escalate this week after a rather pleasant weekend on the river.  This will not last, as the temps drop and the days starting to feel a little like fall you can expect the fishing to take a turn from good to great!

The South Holston is still seeing Sulphurs in the afternoons and dryfly action is still presenting itself on a daily basis.  How Long will these hatches last?  Well, some days are better than others as the bugs make the transition and the hatches become shorter.  Not to fear,  the Olives will take the main stage in no time.  Midge fishing has been the name of the game for the past week along with Scuds and Mayfly nymphs all bringing fish to the net.

The Watauga tailwater is a great option for those seeking a different back drop after exploring  the SoHo for a day or so.  This 30 mile tailwater offers a variety of water conditions that will quench the thirst of any angler new or experienced.  The Midge and Olive bite has been consistent depending on the section that you float with some potential dryfly action as well.  This is a great time of year to be on an East Tennessee tailwater,  so come see what the fuss is about and put a bend in your flyrod.


All The Best,




Fishing Report August 14th, 2016

The dog days of summer are in full swing and Mother Nature has sun kissed this region in a big way the last couple of months.  Although the days have been scorchers our water temp was 49 degrees at the weir a few days ago, thats right 49.  TVA has thrown us curve balls regarding water flow on a daily basis but the SHRL guide staff has left a trail of caught and safely released fish on both tailwaters.

The South Holston this week should see a little more generation in the afternoons that will get those bugs cranking again after a weekend of no flow.  Nymphing and drys are in order on the SoHo.  While the Watauga is fishing best under an indicator or the ever popular Japanese beetle bite in the early morning have been racking up numbers with some great fish to boot.  Midges and Mayfly patterns will get the job done on both rivers for a bit as we slide into the Olives in the next couple months.

With school starting back up and hunters prepping their food plots and hanging stands and cameras the river will lack the pressure that it has seen this summer.  This is a perfect time to find some solitude in a drift boat or on foot with us here at the Lodge.  Above Pic is Joe Boland with a big buck of a bow on his second cast at high water, way to go Joe!!


Jon and Team SHRL




Fishing Report July 12th, 2016

Low water in the morning and high water in the afternoons said the little fairy and that is what we are working with here on the South Holston.  This gives anglers the opportunity to experience the best of both worlds.  If stalking big trout at low water is your game?  Then the mornings are perfect for you for sure.  If a high water nymph bite gets you going then a afternoon float should be right up your alley.  Either way Sulphur time is upon us and will continue here on the SoHo.

While the Watauga, our sister river on the other side of the mountain  is running perfect for just about anything.  The Sulphurs are starting to peter out but move on over Empherella’s here come the Olives.  Although small sizes  20-24  these are tasty treats for the trout of the Watauga tailwater and have been showing up daily.

There is always time to work but spending time and having FUN with family and friends is more important.  So grab your mother, father, son, daughter, grandpa, grandma, best friend, mimi, or nana and come out and put a bend in that fly rod.  We teach everyone how to fly fish!!

All The Best,

Jon and team SHRL