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.

Friday, September 4, 2020

UO Fishing Report - 9/4/20

Welcome back to our Friday fishing report. It looks like we’re gonna be “high and dry,” so your best bets for this holiday weekend are river bass, blueline wild trout, and DNR stockers for the kids.  Notice that the days are now shorter, so our dawn or dusk adventures will now be easier on all of us!  Here’s our latest intel.

We are high on air temps and dry on the rainfall, finally. That means our bigger rivers are clearing. The Hooch at Highway 115 this morning (4th) had a good 3-4 feet of visibility, so yak and canoe fans should have a good time floating the northeast Georgia rivers while the bass and bream can actually see your flies.

Headwater trout are still rockin’ along! Jimmy and Jeff hit the Smokies yesterday (3rd) and had a big time on droppers and dries. They each caught a dozen or more, mainly bows, but the best fish for both were twelve-inch browns. Each lost a bigger brown, which was probably due to their inexperience.  😉 Almost all fish came on the dropper, which was a freshly tied tungsten fur ant. The few trout on top succumbed to a small stimulator or parachute beetle during the day and a large (#12) stimulator at Dark30.  To top off a stellar day, both drivers enjoyed Big Boy’s induced elk jam when he crossed Highway 441 on their way home.

The best headwater intel came from UO-Helen’s assistant manager Wes, who said, “ Got out on Monday for a couple hours of speck fishing on IDBIS creek. I caught about 7 fish that were all very nice. What the creek lacked in quantity it made up for in quality. The smallest fish I caught was probably 6” and the largest fish I caught went slightly over 8”. The trusty #12 black Wooly Bugger was my fly of choice. The two attached pictures are actually some of the smaller fish I caught. It was a crazy good day in the mountains.”

We had a great stocker report from our friend, flatlander Chris Moore, who took a brief family vacation up here last weekend to get his son on some trout. Chris said,”Nash Had a big time on Moccasin Creek. Best luck was on a 1/8 oz glitter fire tiger rooster tail.”  Nice job starting them young, Chris!

Today’s DNR intel here: 


Darren from Alpharetta ran up to Helen twice for some Dark30 stripers with a local fishing buddy. They had decent luck both times.  The first trip took advantage of a rain spike, and they nailed one small striper and a 3-pounder on a six-inch rainbow trout streamer in the muddy water.  Their return trip was to low, gin-clear waters, the toughest conditions to get any takers.  They finally fooled two small fish on olive buggers at dark, but Darren was haunted by the two BIG  blowups behind his six-inch trout streamer.  It looks like they were last-minute refusals, but those violent crashes right at his feet made Darren vow for a rematch.

That’s the latest from the UO gang. Be smart and distance yourselves from the holiday crowds. You can still find some great opportunities by getting off the beaten paths. Enjoy the break in our monsoon season, enjoy the long weekend, and make some memories of your own. Thanks for your patronage: online, curbside, and instore.  Call either shop if we can help point you in the right direction.

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