The Hiwassee River’s riverbed is fairly level as it travels along the valley floor and great for fishing and fly fishing due to its accessibility. All mountain rivers are either located on forestry lands, county lands or private lands. Valley lands are primarily private owned though in many cases county roads both paved and unpaved skirt these waterways in many places. To find access to these fishing locations it best to use a county map or gain permission from private property owners to access the riverbank. Maps concerning National Forest property will locate river access from unpaved roads yet most forest river and stream access is often overgrown with fewer access points though the isolation in these forest locations is its own reward. Lake Chatuge was founded in 1942. TVA (Tennessee Valley Authority) constructed a 2,950 foot earth-filled dam across the Hiawassee River. Originally for the purpose of flood control and to bring affordable electrical power to the area.

Lake Chatuge has an abundance of scenic coves along its 133 mile shoreline are great for fishing, swimming, boating, camping and other water sports. Lake Chatuge which travels between Hiawassee Georgia and Hayesville North Carolina. The entire lake is approximately 7,200 acres, 3,700 of which are in Clay County.

The Weir, just north of the dam, offers picnic tables and a launch for canoes and tubes for a trip on the Hiawassee River to a take out area near Fires Creek Wildlife Management Area.

There are three public boat ramps on the North Carolina side of Lake Chatuge: Jackrabbit Mountain Campground, off Hwy 175; Gibson Cove Campground, off Myers Chapel Road; and Ledford Chapel Wildlife Access Ramp, on Hwy 64.

Fishing: Thirty-two species of fish inhabit Lake Chatuge, with Small Mouth Bass, Large Mouth Bass, spotted Bass, Sunfish and White Bass predominating. Striped White Bass hybrids are stocked annually.

Fishing licenses are required for all except residents using digestible bait, whether fishing in streams or the lake; short-term licenses are available for visitors.

Flowing westward the Hiwassee River winds is way across the extreme southwestern tail of Western North Carolina. Finding its way to the mountain town of Murphy, Cherokee County North Carolina the Hiwassee River joins the Valley River converging on the northern tip of Murphy. Together the two rivers flow through a gorge a short distant to Hiwassee Lake and merge with the waters of Nottely River in the Nantahala National Forest. Hiwassee Lake is located north of the town of Murphy below the southern edge of the Lower Unaka Mountains also known as the Unicoi Mountains. Hiwassee Lake is a long channel lake with many side channels to explore for fishing enthusiast. The lake is also used for recreational boating though there’s no large body of water on the lake, which often draws most boating recreation. 

What's Included in Guided Trips

What's Included

Provided:

Rod & Reel*

We’ll set you up with a high-quality rod and reel that match your experience level and the trip at hand.

Flies

Guides will chose the most current patterns daily from our shop’s selection of top quality flies.

Terminal Tackle*

Included in the price of every trip is all terminal tackle including tippet, split shot, leaders, and strike indicators.

Wading Gear*

Our premium waders and wading boots from Simms will keep you dry (and help you stay upright) in case you decide to leave the boat for some selective wading.

Drift Boat or Raft

Depending on current water levels, our guides will row you in a Stealth Craft Drift boat or NRS Otter Raft. These boats are roomy, comfortable, and designed specifically for fly fishing.

Transportation

We will designate a meeting place or you will Meet at our Fly Shop.

*You’re always welcome to bring your own gear if you’d prefer, or you may have the opportunity to purchase your own gear at our fly shop, however we can’t knock anything off the price for doing so. Our Guides can get you all set up with equipment and everything you will need for future fly fishing. Just let them know after the trip.

Not Provided:

Georgia, Tennessee, North Carolina Fishing Licenses

Fishing licenses are required for all trip participants over the age of 16. If you want to save time you can purchase them online before you arrive, or you can wait and do it at the shop.

Food

Since this is only a four-hour trip, there’s no time for lunch. (A cooler stocked with bottled water is included.) Please bring a few snacks or other items you may wish to have.

Guide Gratuity

Never expected, always appreciated. Our guides work hard to provide you with the best possible experience and appreciate the generosity. If you had a great trip it is customary gratuity be given to the Guides in Cash, or if you prefer to leave a gratuity by Credit Card, you may do so when booking the trip.

What to Wear

The weather in the North Georgia, Tri- State area is unpredictable and always changing. It is important to head out on the water prepared for the full range of conditions. Also, please keep in mind that you'll be fishing in changing weather – hydration and sun protection as well as rain gear are key. Here is how we recommend dressing for a Half-Day Float Trip:

Summer:

Top

Breathable shirt or sun hoody.

Light fleece layer for cold, early mornings.

Light, packable rain jacket.

Bottom

Breathable pants or shorts.

Footwear

Sandals or water shoes with good traction (like Tevas or Chacos).

Wet-wading sandals or wading boots with guard socks.

Accessories

Sun hat and polarized sunglasses.

Spring and Fall

Top

Base layer or long underwear that wicks moisture and dries quickly.

Insulating mid layer (fleece, down, or synthetic).

Waterproof/breathable shell.

Bottom

Base layer or long underwear that wicks moisture and dries quickly.

Waterproof/breathable shell.

Footwear

Sandals or water shoes with good traction (like Tevas or Chacos).

Wet-wading sandals or wading boots with guard socks.

Wool or synthetic socks to wear with boots and waders on cooler days.

Accessories

Sun hat and polarized sunglasses.

Light gloves or hand liners.

Don't stress if you're missing something from this list – our retail store is fully stocked with everything you could need for your fly fishing trip. If you can arrive a few minutes early, our retail staff will get you set up with any fishing attire you need, or when you book your trip, you may request items and we can put them together for you ready at shop. Please note additional charges for these items.