Fishing

Rainbow TroutThe GSMNP has more then 2,000 miles of streams inside its borders.  Rainbow, brook and brown trout are the stars of the fishing world in the Smokies.  Every fisherman that come to the GSMNP with a pair of waders is looking to hook into a rainbow trout that they can brag about for the rest of their lives.

The rainbow and brown trout were brought into the park as game fish and they are incredibly fun to catch.  But if you are looking for something a little more elusive, a little more interesting, roam into the higher elevations and start looking for the only native trout in the Smoky Mountains, the brook trout.

Fishing Regulations from the GSMNP website:

License Requirements
You must possess a valid fishing license or permit from either Tennessee or North Carolina. Either state license is valid throughout the park and no trout stamp is required. Fishing licenses and permits are not available in the park, but may be purchased in nearby towns or online (links provided by state below). Special permits are required for fishing in Gatlinburg and Cherokee.

Tennessee License Requirements
Residents and nonresidents age 13 and older must have a valid license. Residents age 65 and older may obtain a special license from the state. Buy a license from the state government of Tennessee.

North Carolina License Requirements
Residents and nonresidents age 16 and older need a license. Residents age 70 and older may obtain a special license from the state. Buy a license from the state government of North Carolina.

Persons under 16 in North Carolina and under 13 in Tennessee are entitled to the adult daily bag and possession limits and are subject to all other regulations

Some other things to know:

  • You can fish year round inside the National Park.
  • Fishing is open from a half hour before sunrise to a half hour after sunset.
  • After you have caught your limit you must stop fishing immediately.
  • 1 hand held rod.
  • Artificial lures with a single hook – dropper flies may be used – up to two flies per leader.

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