The middle section of the Watauga River at Siam Bridge is a great place to catch a mixture of rainbow and brown trout. Parts of this section are a little on the deep side, so you generally have to stay closer to the bank if you’re wading. This section is road-side, so you typically won’t be fishing alone.
Find a spot to park and make your way through the weeds, strap your boots on tight or else you might lose a shoe to the mud pits at the rivers edge.
One of my favorite ways to fish in this area is using a wooly bugger. It’s an optimal spot for casting your line across the river and dragging it back towards you. Usually I’ll cast my line, let the wooly bugger sink some, and then start slowly dragging the line back towards me.
The water here is slow and clear, so a light tippet is always necessary when fishing small flies. Come prepared with your 6 and 7x. Make sure that the only thing the fish can see is your fly hitting the water. If any part of your line hits hard, it’ll spook them.
What to use*:
Nymph rig: Squirmy worm, pheasant tail, black/purple/olive midge, split case (sulphur or BWO), copper John, soft hackle pheasant tail, red butt
Streamer: Wooly Bugger
Dries: Caddis, Sulphur, Blue Wing Olive (Winter)
*These fly choices may depend on the current season. Contact me or a local fly shop for more information about which flies to use!
You can get here by typing in 222 Steel Bridge Rd, Elizabethton, TN into your GPS. Previously, there was a steel bridge in this exact area, but it was demolished after they built a new one. You can still see the support beams in the water!