Watauga River Trout Fishing

Come explore the Watauga River with us!

Some rivers are much fun to fish on, and one of such rivers is the Watauga River. This beautiful river is home to more than 6,000 trout per mile. It’s popularly known for housing rainbow trout and trophy trout. Summer months can produce blue-winged olive hatches in the Watauga River. 


We float on this river all year round, so no time is a wrong time to enjoy a blissful fly fishing experience on the Watauga River. There are also destinations on the river to enjoy an exciting wading experience. 


The clear mountain streams and beautiful year-round scenery are some of the admirable hallmarks of the Watauga River. It’s an incredibly ample space to learn and explore different fly fishing techniques. 

There is no better tailwater to explore all you want than the Watauga River. It’s one of the favorite destinations for many anglers; you will surely experience this exciting adventure. 


Do you have questions or inquiries about fly fishing on the Watauga River?


Contact our guides to have your questions answered.


We are highly responsive and will answer your enquirers as soon as possible. 

Facts about the Watauga River

The Watauga River flows from western North Carolina into East Tennessee. It is about 60 miles long and begins the confluence of the Shanty Spring Branch and the Green Ridge Branch on Grandfather Mountain in Watauga County, North Carolina.


Watauga is Cherokee and it simply means: beautiful river.


Crossing into Johnson County, the Watauga River is first impounded by the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) Watauga Dam, creating the 6,430-acre (2,600 ha) Watauga Lake. This earth impoundment of the Watauga River has two large tributaries: the Elk River and Roan Creek, the former valley of rich bottom land makes up a very large part of the embayment of Watauga Lake.


Watauga Lake is bridged by Tennessee State Route 67 at Butler Bridge just as the watercourse enters Carter County, Tennessee. The Appalachian Trail crosses the Watauga River at Watauga Dam.


Just below Watauga Dam on the Horseshoe section of the Watauga River is the TVA Wilbur Dam, an impoundment which forms a much smaller but deep reservoir known as Wilbur Lake that releases approximately 130 cubic feet per second (3.7 m3/s) of discharged water back into the Watauga River during the summer months.


The Watauga River flows generally north and then west into Carter County where it forms the northern limits of Elizabethton, where the Watauga then receives the Doe River. Further downstream on the Watauga River at the boundary between Carter County and Washington County is the old TVA Watauga Steam Plant.