top of page

tuckaseegee river

The Tuckasegee, or the "Tuck" as locals call it is the largest trout river in Western North Carolina. After flowing through Panthertown Valley, the Tuckasegee flows through a chain of lakes and comes out as a tail-water river. There are two different designations along the tailwater portion of the Tuckaseegee River: Hatchery Supported, and Delayed Harvest. The 5 mile Delayed Harvest section near Sylva, NC is without a doubt the most popular section of river with fly anglers. During the months of October through May, the Delayed Harvest section is stocked heavily, and all catch and release fishing with single-hook flies only.  Further downriver near Bryson City, there is a second Delayed Harvest stretch that offers more of the best Fly Fishing North Carolina has to offer and is developing into a trophy brown trout fishery.  Dynamic is the word that comes to mind while targeting trout in Sylva and Bryson City.

west fork tuckaseegee river - private

exclusively with brookings anglers

the river

the fish

Important note!  The Tuckaseegee is a tailwater river and its water levels change greatly due to power generations. If you plan to wade the Tuck, be sure to check the generation schedule at Duke Energy, check the Nantahala Area tab and look for the flows arriving at Highway 107 which is about where the Delayed Harvest section starts.   This will inform you not only as to when dam releases are scheduled, but also how long it should take for the flow changes to reach different stretches.  Keep in mind, things change and unscheduled releases can occur.  Floating the Tuck, however, not only allows you to eliminate the worry associated with changing water levels but also to access and to enjoy many more sections of this remarkable river.

how do i get there?

Google Maps will not only provide driving directions but will show you where to park

fishing the tuckaseegee river

Please explore below for more detailed information about fishing in the WNC region in general and the Tuckaseegee specifically.  Much like the East Fork of the French Broad, the Little River and the Nantahala, the fishing is special in North Carolina's Delayed Harvest sections as the NC Wildlife Resources Commission stocks liberally but there are some special things to know so as mentioned down below, know your signs!!!  Take advantage of this printable map of the Tuckaseegee River region.  Print this out, ask questions, mark it up and plan your day. A Guide will teach you everything you need to know about the nuances of various stretches of the water but if you want to learn more about where you are going  before you arrive or if you want to plan your own day on the water for yourself or your group, you will find just about anything you could want plus a little more.   

fishing reports?

Current fishing reports are difficult to maintain but your best bet is to reach out to our Partners 

where should i fish?

Take advantage of this printable map of the region highlighting the different Managed Waters.  Ask questions and plan your day.

what other waters are in the area?

The North Carolina Resources Commission maintains a highly detailed map of Managed trout water across the state.  This map can be a little unwieldy so here is a simpler version that also can be printed.

What trout will we be fishing for?

Brook_trout 2.jpg
brown trout.jpg
Rainbow 2.jpg
Brook_trout 2.jpg

do i need a north carolina fishing license?

Probably, yes.  Learn about the regulations, requirements and costs and purchase your license.

what flies will i need?

Your Guides will have everything you need but if you want to plan your trip or be prepared with your own favorites, NC Wildlife and Trout Unlimited offer a Hatch Chart to help you with the insects that will be looking to imitate.  If your shop at home does not have the right flies, Brookings Anglers, Davidson River Outfitters and Headwaters Outfitters all have impressive selections of local patterns.

are these wild trout or stocked trout?

Yes. While there are hundreds of  miles of Wild Trout waters, NC generously stocks Hatchery Supported waters and Delayed Harvest waters.  These Stocking Charts are for 2020 and will updated as soon as 2021 is available.

trout regulations – know your signs!

There are some very specific rules about where and when trout are stocked and where and when you are permitted for fish for them.  A reminder, there are limited opportunities to harvest a fish but BlueLines Fly Fishing encourages Catch and Release.

what about water flows?

Western North Carolina has a number of Tailwaters and Freestone rivers.  The water levels on the Tailwaters are controlled by dam releases and the Freestones by Mother Nature herself.  The USGS measures and reports on many - not all - rivers across the state and there are independent groups that monitor water flows as well but knowing the amount of water currently flowing down your favorite river and if it is increasing or decreasing will make or break your day.  Imagine driving up to the East Outlet of the Kennebec River to fish a section that was shin deep last month to find that it is now over your head.  PAY ATTENTION because water levels can change quickly.

what fishing gear and clothing will i need?

Your Guides will have rods, reels and flies and, with some advanced planning, waders.  However, if you prefer your own equipment, please see What to Bring for suggestions.  They will not, however, provide you with clothing to keep warm though they would be happy to sell it to you and with more of that advanced planning, will even bring it to you when you meet for the day or will have it waiting for you at the Greystone.  Please explore Gear for specific recommendations for fishing and Clothing to make sure that you will be prepared for Winter in WNC.

moon schedules

Do I really care about venturing out under the full moon?  First, a full moon rising in the Western North Carolina mountains is not to be missed.  Yes, those are two trout rings in that reflection. 


Also, mousing at night is an experience to be seized if the conditions are right.


it will be winter here.  is it winter there?

Of course.  However, with an average January high of 47 degrees and average low of 29, it is nothing like a New England winter.  It DOES get cold and anchor ice DOES form on occasion so be prepared with your Gear and check the Brevard Weather Forecasts knowing that it is only 2,231 feet above sea level and it get colder the higher you climb.

sunrise and sunset

Why would I really care about the sunrise and sunset?  In winter, the days are deceptively short so be prepared.  During April and May, the nymphing might be strong in the morning but a hatch might occur in the evening.  Know when to be out there!

bottom of page