Carl Shane Kistel is passionate about the outdoors and all the activities it offers such as kayaking, backpacking, mountain climbing, hiking, and fishing among others. Here, he lists some of the top trout fishing spots in his native state of North Carolina.
As a nature enthusiast and regular outdoorsman, Carl Shane Kistel has scouted North Carolina for all the best recreational activity locations. A frequent fisherman, he likes to introduce his friends and family to the native brook trout in rivers across the state.
Mountain streams in North Carolina are the perfect locations for the native species of brook trout. These trout are smaller in size and are usually only found in smaller, rocky streams. Because rainbow and brown trout aren’t native to North Carolina, their smaller cousins are a great starter fish for many newcomers. However, certain rivers are also stocked with larger trout to draw in fishers from across the state and beyond.
“The rivers and mountain streams all around North Carolina make it a perfect trout fishing ground,” says Carl Shane Kistel. “Residents of the state won’t have to travel far to find a perfect spot.”
Below, he lists a handful of what he considers to be the best trout fishing spots in the state.
Although it’s a little harder to get to than most and requires fishers to wade out into the current to cast, the Linville River is one of the most famous trout-fishing destinations in the state. The river is stocked with foreign and native trout, including large populations of rainbow, brown, and brook trout. Visitors can fish in the river year-round, but get the most from the fall season.
The Toe River of Avery County features only native trout and isn’t as heavily fished as others in the state. This makes it ripe for ideal fishing conditions and won’t require visitors to share promising spots with other fishers. Additionally, the hatching of aquatic insects in spring makes the Toe River a meal destination for many of the native trout.
The Watauga River offers enough versatility to be fitting for both experienced and beginner fishers alike. There are calmer sections of the river that provide tranquil fishing grounds and rougher, wilder waters that make for a worthy challenge. The Watauga is dotted with public access points, making it one of the easiest rivers to access. In addition, the river is a sought-after trout fishing destination thanks to the cold-water feeder creeks that connect to it from the nearby mountains.
Wilson Creek is the most scenic of all destinations on Kistel’s list. The clear water of Wilson Creek is only outshined by the beautiful landscape along the banks of the creek. The rugged terrain that borders the water makes for ideal fishing conditions for many types of trout and offers both shallower and deeper pools and riffles.
“No matter your level of skill or style of fishing, North Carolina provides some of the best waters for trout, bass, and much other sport fish in the whole country,” says Carl Shane Kistel.