Western North Carolina Smallmouth Bass Guide

A Guide To Help You Catch More Smallmouth Bass in WNCwestern north carolina smallmouth bass fishing

When it comes to the battle between the fisherman and the fish, the smallmouth is the one sport fish that is always brought up. With more power than a trout, more fight than a largemouth, the smallmouth is the best fighting fish – pound for pound. Western North Carolina is well known for trout, but WNC is home to world class fisheries for smallmouth, and they fish great year round. Whether it’s spinning tackle or fly tackle the smallmouth bass are not shy.

Conventional Tackle For Smallies

Most people choose to use light spinning tackle with 4-6lb test line. All of the guides at Southern Appalachian Anglers choose to use medium to medium heavy spinning tackle with 8-12lb test line for a reason… When fishing for smallmouth, your’re not fishing for small bass. You have chances at fish up to 7 pounds. Yes… you read that correctly. Seven pounds is a big fish and they are in our river systems in Asheville, North Carolina. Conventional tackle will result in big fish and more fish, opposed to fly fishing. If you are a fly guy, check out the best times to fish.

Fly Fishing Asheville Smallmouth

The best and most productive times of year to fish with a fly rod are going to be May through July. While you will catch more small fish during the later summer months, June will provide fly anglers with the biggest fish on poppers and streamers. Hand tied leaders work well for both topwater and sinking flies. Six to nine foot leaders are common with a seven foot leader offering the most versatility for casting as well as presentation.

Western North Carolina Smallmouth Bass Tips

While our guides fish many rivers for smallmouth bass the French Broad is one of the most prolific fisheries that holds quality and quantity. You can find smallmouth all the way from Brevard to Marshall. There are many sections to fish that are all very different, but hold quality fish. Check out our Best Sections To Fish The French Broad article.

When fishing the French Broad River, concentrate on strong current breaks, current seams, and eddies. Don’t be afraid to throw your bait or fly through fast moving water. Many times smallmouth will travel in packs feeding on minnows and war paint shiners and can be found busting the surface in a long run.

PRO TIP: Many anglers fishing the French Broad use white Fluke Juniors by Zoom Bait Company. To stray away from a common bait try a coffee shad color or some sort of off color white, that offers a natural presentation. Our guides favorite color is the pink Fluke Junior or the river shad color by Zoom Bait Company

Contact Us

We hope this article helps you land more smallmouth whether you are veteran fisherman searching for the trophy fish or just passing through the Asheville area. If you have questions on what to use or where to use it, give us a call or send us an email and one of our guides will help you with your questions. Contact email link | Call 828-691-1506.


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