Unicoi Outfitters is north Georgia's premier guide service and fly fishing outfitter, located on the Chattahoochee River near alpine Helen. Look for fishing reports, gear and book reviews, and general musings here from our staff and guides.

Sunday, January 30, 2011


What a beautiful weekend for fishing. The fish were literally jumping out of the water, especially when Chris Storey hooked this trophy on a #18 rainbow warrior at Frog Hollow. Chris landed several this size--and you should have seen the one that broke him off. Thanks Chris for a great day--look forward to the next time.

Our fly tying session will meet this Tues, Feb 1, at Unicoi Outfitters in Helen at 6:oo. We will be tying a mini leech and czech nymph and whatever Cole surprises us with. Look forward to seeing the "Tie 1 On" bunch at the session and anyone else with an interest in tying flies. Beginners are more than welcome and we will provide all the stuff to get you started.

The flies are pretty good, the coffee is free and pretty good, the advice is free and it is well--free, but the fellowship, it is real good--we always have a good time. I think this week there may also be some home made cinnamon rolls on the bench--they will be great.

Learn to tie your own flies & learn to tie better flies--the ones you know will catch fish.



Monday, January 24, 2011

What Do Fly Fishing Guides Do On Their Day Off?

Jake Darling headed over to Dukes Creek yesterday and dropped us a quickie report, proving what we've always said about how well Georgia streams can fish in the winter:

Fished at dukes on Sunday and boy was it good! The fish were biting really well in the morning but it died off around lunch. I managed to catch a dozen fish. Of these fish, seven of them were over 20 inches and the smallest of the day was a 15-incher. Five of my biggest fish came in seven casts out of one hole. The fish were taking both small and large Kaufman Stones, early brown stoneflies, and small diamond midges.

Sounds like a good time to head over to Dukes if you can get a slot on the stream.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Perfect Trip at Nacoochee Bend

Ben VanDevender had another chance to fish with us this past weekend and sent along this report, along with some nice photos by Josh England.

Saturday was a trip I had been looking forward to for quite some time.  It was my birthday and what better way to spend ithan in the company of good friends, my wife, and the river.  The fine folks at Unicoi helped make this a possibility and my gratitude is endless.  The day was not unlike any other, the plan was to get everyone on fish.  I have to admit my wife is not the best fly angler, but she follows directions well, and two newbies who are great friends of mine who had never been trout fishing came along as well.  Quick casting lessons the night before and I felt they were adequate to present flies to fish.  The day was not necessarlily about me catching fish as it was exposing my friends and my wife to the experience I so often yearn for, to let them feel and experience what I feel. 

Well, within three casts my wife had hooked up on three fish and the thermometer had not broken 26 degrees.  Start to a great day!  She finally landed a nice fish and was ecstatic.  Switched positions so my friend Neil Robinson could present a cast, and he missed three fish consectutively but finally connected after much frustration.  A long fight and a fish to his feet, then she came unbuttoned…that’s fishing.  He was just excited now that he felt one of these beasts on the fly rod and that he actually made the hookup happen.  The day presented itself like this for much of the time, I untangled windknots, tied in tippet, selected flies etc…hmmm…was this a day off from Callaway?  The next highlight of the day came when my wife picked the water to fish, presented the fly, set the hook, and landed a trout for the first time where she did EVERYTHING herself.  That made my trip right there!  Then right behind her, Neil Robinson connected and did the same.  My other friend left with skunk on his back, so we took him to Smith creek where he quickly learned and hooked into his first trout on the fly rod!  A perfect end to a perfect trip!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Bonefish in the Bahamas!

Bonefishing at Crooked Island
As many of you know, our ol' pal Henry Cowen runs a couple salt-water flyfishing trips each year.  These trips usually fill up quickly, and for his next trip to Crooked Island in the Bahamas, that is the case....but he's had two folks who had to cancel, which has opened up two spots on a first-come basis for his trip from April 22 through 30 this spring.  That's six days of fishing, but Henry can also accommodate a shorter stay of three or four days fishing as well.

Click here for more info on Crooked Island Lodge, where the trip is based, or call / email Henry directly at 678-513-1934 / henryc@pastourelledesign.com.  It should be a great trip!

Sunday, January 2, 2011


These mild winter days are a great time to take a kid (or anyone) fishing. As you can see from the picture from this past week that the results can be very rewarding. I had a great time fishing with Matt Martin and his 2 boys, Noah and Mason--my great nephews. We fished on the Soque at River North where Mason caught this huge rainbow on his new fly rod. He fell in during the trip but I think he would say it was worth it. The day before our trip Mason killed a huge deer which was his first--what a great week for him. Both boys caught fish and had a great time. This is as good as it gets.

The day before this trip I had the pleasure of fishing with Parks Davis and his grandsons, Matthew and Andrew, at Nacoochee Bend. This trip was very good also with both boys landing several fish. The fish were very active taking small midges.

Thanks to Matt and Parks and the young men for allowing me to fish with them and share their memories--look forward to doing it again.

Our monthly tying session will be this Tues (Jan 4) at 6:00 at Unicoi Outfitters in Helen.

I'm really looking forward to this meeting because Chad Peters will be tying some of his patterns for us--Chad ties great looking flies-- so come to the session if you can.

Everyone is invited--come learn to tie your first flies or to tie better quality flies--equipment and supplies will be available.

Hope to see you there.