South Fork Holston River Fishing Report

There are three forks to the Holston River, but if you are into fishing for trout, the South Fork is the one you want. In less than two hours drive from Asheville, you can be fishing one of the finest tailwater trout waters east of the Mississippi. The 112 mile long South Fork Holston River, referred to as the SoHo, is part of the greater Tennessee River drainage basin, managed by the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) Oblivious to borders, the river starts in Virginia and ends at its confluence with the North Fork in Tennessee.


The South Holston Dam, the uppermost of three on the South Fork, created the landmark South Holston Lake. It is the tailwaters below the lake that have made this stretch of water so desirable. Here, the insects are humming, the favorable water temperature is uniform 12 months of the year and the fish are thriving. 

Throughout the approximate 15 mile section below the dam, stocked rainbows, wild browns and smallmouth bass can be found. According to a recent Tennessee Wildlife Resource Authority (TVRA) survey, there are 5,000 to 6,000 trout per mile, averaging 12 inches in length; it’s not uncommon to find 20+ inches.

This is a river that is usually floated but can be waded depending on water levels. Because the TVA is constantly adjusting water flows, levels can change without notice and whether floating or wading, obtaining a release schedule and a skilled guide is highly recommended.

Before booking a trip keep in mind that sections of the river are closed to protect spawning browns between November and January, all trout 16-20 inches must be released and only one over 22 inches may be taken home.
 
Featured Fishing Trips
Guided Fishing Trips
$
450
/ Boat
Capacity:
1 - 2 anglers
Days:
Daily
Duration:
1 day
Our float trips are for smallmouth bass and trout on the Holston, Watauga and French Broad Rivers. Floating these rivers allows you to cover more productive water, and water that is ... morenot accessible to wade fishing. During these trips you may have opportunities to get out of the raft and wade fish “back cuts” and special riffle areas that are known to hold better than average fish.

For these trips we recommend 5 weight or larger rods from 8 to 9 foot in length.

On float trips NO STUDDED wading boots are allowed and waders are recommended year round due to the constant cool water temperature.

This trip includes lunch and non-alcoholic beverages. Lodging and fishing licenses are not included.
$
375
-
$
450
/ Boat
Capacity:
1 - 2 anglers
Days:
Daily
Duration:
4 hours - 1 day
The South Holston is famous for it’s summertime sulphur hatches. It can also be the most challenging and complex river in the country. This float trip is for people who don’t mind ... morea challenge, and really want to cast to rising fish.
$
350
-
$
450
/ Boat
Capacity:
1 - 2 anglers
Days:
Daily
Duration:
4 hours - 1 day
Fly Fishing in Asheville with Curtis Wright Outfitters will ensure the best opportunity for you to enjoy this unique area and catch and release some spectacular fish. Our guides are ... morefriendly and knowledgeable.

There’s no better way to experience the larger rivers of Western North Carolina and Eastern Tennessee than in a boat. Float trips cover between 3-9 miles of river depending on the trip. So whether you are experienced or a novice, float trips are a great way to see a lot of scenery while catching fish. You will be able to sit back, relax, and enjoy the fishing, as our experienced guides lead you down one of these scenic rivers for an unforgettable trip.

Floating is preferred by many as the most effective way to fish the larger rivers of WNC. The Tuckaseegee River offers great scenery and fishing from October to June. The Watauga and South Holston are big, beautiful tailwaters offering dry fly, nymph and streamer action year round. The French Broad and Nolichucky are home to an abundance of very large smallmouth that can be taken on the fly or with spin gear. Smallmouth bass fishing is best from March to December. Whatever fish species you are interested in targeting, a float trip is an epic way to spend a day!
$
350
-
$
450
/ Boat
Capacity:
1 - 2 anglers
Days:
Daily
Duration:
4 hours - 1 day
The South Holston River is located near Johnson City Tennessee and is a short drive north from Asheville North Carolina. The South Holston is one of the finest fisheries in the Appalachians ... moreas well as the country. This tail water is a 15 mile section located between south Holston lake and Boone lake, and holds some of Tennessee’s largest trout.

The South Holston river provides blue wing olive and midge hatches year round as well as great suphur hatches through the summer. Whether you want to dry fly fish the riffles and flats or fish indicator rigs through the deep limestone ledges you can be assured you are fishing in one of the premiere fisheries in the country. There are also lots of sight fishing opportunities on the south Holston river, which is most of our guides favorite tactics. If you see it you can catch it!

Let Asheville Anglers introduce you to the South Holston River and I’m sure you will fall in love with this great waterway as well. Prime Sulphur hatch on the south Holston river is June through august but any day you have the chance to fish the south Holston you take it.
Additional Information
Source:
Virginia
Mouth:
North Fork of the Holston River
Length:
112 miles
Seasonal Conditions
Season
Hatches
SpringBWO, blue quill, quill gordon, mottled & gray caddis, hendrickson midges and drakes
SummerLight cahill, stenonema ithaca, green & yellow stonefly, giant stonefly, flying ants and terrestrials
FallBWO, deptera midge, isonychia bi-color, flying ants and terrestrials
WinterMidges
Game Fish Opportunities
Fishing Trips
Our float trips are for smallmouth bass and trout on the Holston, Watauga and French Broad Rivers. Floating these rivers allows you to cover more productive water, and water that is ... morenot accessible to wade fishing. During these trips you may have opportunities to get out of the raft and wade fish “back cuts” and special riffle areas that are known to hold better than average fish.

For these trips we recommend 5 weight or larger rods from 8 to 9 foot in length.

On float trips NO STUDDED wading boots are allowed and waders are recommended year round due to the constant cool water temperature.

This trip includes lunch and non-alcoholic beverages. Lodging and fishing licenses are not included.
The South Holston is famous for it’s summertime sulphur hatches. It can also be the most challenging and complex river in the country. This float trip is for people who don’t mind ... morea challenge, and really want to cast to rising fish.
Fly Fishing in Asheville with Curtis Wright Outfitters will ensure the best opportunity for you to enjoy this unique area and catch and release some spectacular fish. Our guides are ... morefriendly and knowledgeable.

There’s no better way to experience the larger rivers of Western North Carolina and Eastern Tennessee than in a boat. Float trips cover between 3-9 miles of river depending on the trip. So whether you are experienced or a novice, float trips are a great way to see a lot of scenery while catching fish. You will be able to sit back, relax, and enjoy the fishing, as our experienced guides lead you down one of these scenic rivers for an unforgettable trip.

Floating is preferred by many as the most effective way to fish the larger rivers of WNC. The Tuckaseegee River offers great scenery and fishing from October to June. The Watauga and South Holston are big, beautiful tailwaters offering dry fly, nymph and streamer action year round. The French Broad and Nolichucky are home to an abundance of very large smallmouth that can be taken on the fly or with spin gear. Smallmouth bass fishing is best from March to December. Whatever fish species you are interested in targeting, a float trip is an epic way to spend a day!
Fly Fishing in Asheville with Curtis Wright Outfitters will ensure the best opportunity for you to enjoy this unique area and catch and release some spectacular fish. Our guides are ... morefriendly and knowledgeable.

There’s no better way to experience the larger rivers of Western North Carolina and Eastern Tennessee than in a boat. Float trips cover between 3-9 miles of river depending on the trip. So whether you are experienced or a novice, float trips are a great way to see a lot of scenery while catching fish. You will be able to sit back, relax, and enjoy the fishing, as our experienced guides lead you down one of these scenic rivers for an unforgettable trip.

Floating is preferred by many as the most effective way to fish the larger rivers of WNC. The Tuckaseegee River offers great scenery and fishing from October to June. The Watauga and South Holston are big, beautiful tailwaters offering dry fly, nymph and streamer action year round. The French Broad and Nolichucky are home to an abundance of very large smallmouth that can be taken on the fly or with spin gear. Smallmouth bass fishing is best from March to December. Whatever fish species you are interested in targeting, a float trip is an epic way to spend a day!
The South Holston River is located near Johnson City Tennessee and is a short drive north from Asheville North Carolina. The South Holston is one of the finest fisheries in the Appalachians ... moreas well as the country. This tail water is a 15 mile section located between south Holston lake and Boone lake, and holds some of Tennessee’s largest trout.

The South Holston river provides blue wing olive and midge hatches year round as well as great suphur hatches through the summer. Whether you want to dry fly fish the riffles and flats or fish indicator rigs through the deep limestone ledges you can be assured you are fishing in one of the premiere fisheries in the country. There are also lots of sight fishing opportunities on the south Holston river, which is most of our guides favorite tactics. If you see it you can catch it!

Let Asheville Anglers introduce you to the South Holston River and I’m sure you will fall in love with this great waterway as well. Prime Sulphur hatch on the south Holston river is June through august but any day you have the chance to fish the south Holston you take it.
The South Holston River is located near Johnson City Tennessee and is a short drive north from Asheville North Carolina. The South Holston is one of the finest fisheries in the Appalachians ... moreas well as the country. This tail water is a 15 mile section located between south Holston lake and Boone lake, and holds some of Tennessee’s largest trout.

The South Holston river provides blue wing olive and midge hatches year round as well as great suphur hatches through the summer. Whether you want to dry fly fish the riffles and flats or fish indicator rigs through the deep limestone ledges you can be assured you are fishing in one of the premiere fisheries in the country. There are also lots of sight fishing opportunities on the south Holston river, which is most of our guides favorite tactics. If you see it you can catch it!

Let Asheville Anglers introduce you to the South Holston River and I’m sure you will fall in love with this great waterway as well. Prime Sulphur hatch on the south Holston river is June through august but any day you have the chance to fish the south Holston you take it.
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