Davidson River, NC

nick m

New Member
Went down to North Carolina this past week to visit my brother outside of Asheville. He apprentices a potter and while he was working, i managed to spend two days on the water. At the advice of John Hicks I headed to the Davidson River in Transylvania county. From what I'd been told and looking around online, I was a little intimidated as the fish sounded spooky and midge fishing isn't my forte. I got on the water at about 11 after a late night in Asheville and then having to find a flyshop, buy a license, and get some midges. The guy at the flyshop, i forget which one, practically assured me it would be too crowded and I would probably be skunked. Well it certainly was crowded, but there were fish everywhere. Monstrous browns just cruising by your feet, along with bows and brooks. I spent about an hour messing around with midges, missing strikes, and landing one 5 inch brown. Frustrated, I switched to a size 10 chernobyl and promptly caught a solid 11 inch brown. I spent the rest of day catching fish on chernobyls, caddis, emergers, streamers, midge droppers, and even the famous zen condom worm. The highlights of the day were a beautiful 15 inch rainbow and a brown around 17 with fantastic large red spots. I also watched a 20+ fish leisurely come out from under the bank, sip in my chernobyl, and of course I f'ed the hookset. Had to stop for a smoke after that one. I left around 5pm to meet my brother in town, thinking I was hot shit after catching brooks, browns, and bows on this supposedly super-difficult river.

Well, I went back the next day for more of the same and things were a little different. Still fish everywhere but they were definitely not on the bug. Spent about 5 hours on the water and picked up a minnow brown trout on an ant and brought in a feisty footlong brown on a streamer under the same log as the big bow the day before. I guess this was more of a typical day on the D. Talking to a guide in the parking lot, I was told that memorial weekend was super slow and that tuesday-wednesday the fish really started eating again. And thursday it certainly cooled off. Oh well, had a great two days, caught some fish, and am back in good 'ol Massachusetts.

Pictures - While I did have a camera, I took very few pictures. Typically, the second I take out a camera, fish spit the hook, break off, i fall over, and all hell breaks loose without getting off a half decent photo. The first picture is the first real fish landed and the second is proof for zen of the condom worm in action. Overall, great times had by all (me and the fish) and thanks again John for the recommendations.

John Hicks

Owner and operator of Sea Run Pursuits
Nick glad I could be of assistance. Too bad you didn't hook into one of the pigs that patrol that water. BTW what part of the river did you fish? It sounds like you fished the hatchery slick.

nick m

New Member
I parked at the hatchery and fished from about a mile and a half downstream all the way up to the big pool above the hatchery. Got most of the fish in moving water at and above the bridge as well as way below the flat section.

Kent Lufkin

Remember when you could remember everything?
. . . Talking to a guide in the parking lot, I was told that memorial weekend was super slow and that tuesday-wednesday the fish really started eating again.
The most famous six words in flyfishing: "You should have been here yesterday."

Great report, thanks for sharing.


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