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Good Reads

FISHING, the outdoors & LIFE in THE SMOKIES

Before fishing in the Smoky Mountains of North Carolina, you might enjoy these publications written about fishing, camping, cooking and the history of the area.

Native Swain Countian and well-known sportsman and author Jim Casada has written numerous books about the great outdoors including Beginner's Guide to Fly Fishing; Modern Fly Fishing and Fly Fishing in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Website

Casting Angles: A Fly Casting Handbook by Mac Brown of Bryson City. Mac details numerous casting techniques that can be tailored to the individual. More info

Western North Carolina Fly Guide by J.E.B. Hall of Bryson City. A guide to fly fishing for trout, bass, and muskie on 76 wade and float stretches in Western North Carolina and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. More info

Fly Fisherman's Guide to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park by H. Lea Lawrence. A wealth of information about fly fishing in the National Park. Included are black-and-white and color maps and photographs, a stream-by-stream primer on the best flies to use season by season, a fly hatch and pattern chart, and a guide to campsites. More info

The Ultimate Fly-Fishing Guide to the Great Smoky Mountains by Don Kirk and Greg Ward with plenty of advice for fishing for trout in the mountains by two pros. More info

Fontana: A Pocket History of Appalachia by Lance Holland. Learn the cultural and natural history of Hazel Creek, Eagle Creek, Forney Creek, The Little Tennessee River, the Nantahala River and Fontana and Cheoah Lakes – from the Cherokees to present day. More info

Horace Kephart, instrumental in the creation of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, authored the widely-known Our Southern Highlanders: A Narrative of Adventure in the Southern Appalachians and a Study of Life Among the Mountaineers. Another popular book about life in the outdoors by Kephart is Camping and Woodcraft: A Handbook for Vacation Campers and for Travelers in the Wilderness. Mount Kephart and Kephart Prong, one of the mountain streams profiled on this website, were named to honor him. More info


Native brook trout make a mountain comeback – A 2014 article in the Asheville Citizen-Times describes the successful efforts to restore the habitats of Western North Carolina's' only native trout. — In Great Smoky Mountains National Park, biologists have restored 11 streams, totaling 28 stream miles, for brook trout since 1993. The park now has 105 miles of stream where brookies are the only trout present and another 95 miles that contain a mix of brook, brown and rainbow trout.