The Etowah River is fishing well. The topwater bite on the river is getting very good, and this window may not last long, so come armed with a 5-7 weight with floating line and some Boogle Bugs, swim frogs, Pole Dancers, and Flat Freds. We’re keeping some streamers on deck just in case: any color Clouser Minnow, sculpin/JJ special Sparkle Minnows, Flashtail Whistlers, and Lunch $’s in tan or shad.
The Toccoa Tailwater is in turnover. We’re still in a drought and the dam has been generating for small, 2 to 4 hour windows each day. If you do plan on fishing the tailwater, Tammen Park was blocked off while the city paves the parking lot. I’m not sure if they’ve completed the paving yet, but the turnover water from the dam is much warmer than we would like to see up higher, so Tammen probably wouldn’t be your best option anyway. Fish anywhere from Curtis Switch to McCaysville; we’re seeing cooler water downstream. Standard tailwater fare should work in addition to a few good gray/tan caddis imitations, Blue Winged Olives, black and red midges, and big black stoneflies.
The Toccoa Delayed Harvest starts November 1st. Georgia’s Delayed Harvest system designates certain parts of a river/creek as catch and release, single hook (no treble hooks etc. – droppers/articulated flies are allowed), artificial bait from November 1st through May 14th. These streams are stocked heavily during the DH season and provide fantastic trout fishing opportunities for both the novice and expert. Give us a shout at either shop if you have questions about DH fishing.
Small Streams are still low and clear. These creeks are very technical right now, so come prepared with different rigging options, lighter line, and smaller flies. Presentation and stream approach are the most important factors to success on these creeks right now. Try to minimize your presence on the water by walking along banks rather than in the water, using cover, and staying further back off of holes than you normally would. I would try some 16-18 Parachute Adams/Purple Haze/X-Caddis, Small Chubby Cherynobyls, Split Case PMD/BWOs in 16-20, unweighted Soft Hackle Pheasant tails, unweighted Hare’s Ears, etc.
Check the generation schedule before you plan your trip! We do not recommend that you float the Etowah if Allatoona dam is releasing water. We do not recommend wading the Toccoa if the TVA is releasing water. Check the release schedules and be safe!