Davidson River Fishing Report

Stream Report September 3rd, 2022


As the heat of summer *hopefully* starts to recede more and more and gives way to fall; fishing should only get better. For those willing to fish a long leader and light tippet stalking with a dry fly has been fantastic. Throwing attractor patterns or terrestrials has yielded the most fish. While, the largest fish seem to have keyed in on stonefly nymphs and inchworms in larger sizes.

Rain has been in the forecast almost every day so be sure to call the shop to get the latest river conditions or you can check the flows HERE. We are seeing afternoon thunderstorms forecasted for the next few days so please be careful and watch the weather, especially, if you're fishing at elevation or off the parkway. Check the forecast for our area HERE.

*This is also the time of year to pay attention to water temperature. Above 68 degrees, fish mortality skyrockets; they begin to struggle above 65 degrees. Please carry a thermometer, fight fish quickly and save the photos for colder weather.*

If you have an exceptional day of fishing or catch something special we want to hear about it! DM us on Instagram or send an email to Jason with your personal report or a photo from your day.


The Davidson is at its typical late summer condition of low water. The water seems to be the coldest it will be for the day at about 9am and only heating up after that. Get on the water early for best results. Stonefly nymphs, inchworms, and terrestrials seem to be the ticket while others have found success with sculpins and small crayfish imitations. The first few miles of the Davidson are hatchery supported while from Avery Creek upstream the river is regulated as a single hook artificial lures only river. We are also getting into the time of year where our river sees an increase in use from not only anglers but, tubers, paddlers, swimmers, and the like. Please understand that everyone is trying to enjoy the resource and plan your day accordingly. That may mean walking a bit further or fishing earlier to have the best experience. 


Delayed Harvest streams have opened up to all types of fishing since the first Saturday in June with a limit of seven fish a day of any size. It is important to remember that many folks love fishing these streams this time of the year and with that comes an increased impact. Please be a good steward and give other anglers space, practice Leave No Trace and remember there is plenty of fish for everyone. Your best bet here would be to try the “fast food” flies in your box like eggs, worms, and leeches before moving to more natural offerings like girdle bugs, sheep flies, and bead head nymphs. As water temperatures increase and more fish are harvested it will most likely be your best bet to turn your attention back to the hatchery supported, wild, and catch and release water until the temperatures fall and the fish get stocked again in the fall.


Wild Trout fishing is in its typical late summer pattern. Sneaking out first thing in the morning or wait till the evening after a heavy afternoon shower will yield water that is cold enough and fish willing to eat. Inchworms, Ants and Attractor Drys (Think Purple Haze, Yellow Haze, Yellow Stimulator, and Parachute Adams) Again, as the use increases on many of our wild trout streams as we get into the full swing of things, being a good steward of the resource ensures that your favorite stream still fishes well next season. We have seen increased pressure on many of our small streams with easy access and we can only anticipate more pressure as we move into summer. Please keep fish wet, fish in the mornings, carry a thermometer, fish barbless flies, and respect the little streams that make our area such a special place to be.

Flies to Try

Sheepfly 8-12Hot Bead Squirrel Leech 10, Yellow and Tan Foam Caddis 14 & 16, Jig Duracell UV Tan 16, Jigged Baby Sally 14 & 16, Hare's Ear Jig 16, Chubby Chernobyl 12-16, Sparkle Minnow 6-10, Mop Fly 14, Tung Jig Naughty Bunny 14 & 16, Near Nuff Crayfish 4-6, Zirdle Bug 6-12, Sculpzilla, Strawberry Blonde 8-12, Purple Haze 14-18, Adams 14-20, Stimulator 14-16





Looking for more? Check out our Regional Rivers & Streams Overview and Hatch Chart with Fly Recommendations.

overhead shot of man fly fishing on the Davidson


Regional Rivers and Streams Guide

Learn about the rivers and streams of WNC

Regional Rivers and Streams Guide

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What's biting in Western North Carolina?

Seasonal Hatch Chart and Fly Recommendations

What's biting in Western North Carolina?

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Stream Report

As the heat of summer *hopefully* starts to recede more and more and gives way to fall; fishing should only get better. Read More


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