LOCAL WATERWAYS & WHERE TO FISH
Provided by our Local Trout Unlimited chapter in North GA
Public Access | Georgia
Toccoa Tailwater Public Access | Directions and Information
Tammen Park and TVA Dam Access
If you are heading north from Blue Ridge on Hwy 515 (Appalachian Hwy) you will go past Ingles until you reach the bridge. Directly before the bridge on the right is the access road to Tammen Park. Once you have parked you can walk the banks and use the stairs to get into the water. Wading is possible from just below the bridge, all the way to the dam access upstream. The best way to fish it is to make your way down the left bank closest to the park and begin under the bridge working your way up. You must pay attention to the release warnings as the water comes up quickly here and at the dam.
To access the TVA Dam parking lot you will cross the bridge and immediately turn right onto N River Rd. And follow it back until you see the signs for TVA Access. Be aware that across from the parking lot next to the generation house is extremely deep and has a steep drop off.
Curtis Switch Bridge And Curtis Switch TVA Access
Ada St. is the quickest way to reach Curtis Switch. The beginning of Ada St. is located on Mountain St. in downtown Blue Ridge parallel to the train tracks (not towards downtown, left if coming from the highway, right if coming from E Main St.) Continue on Ada St. until you reach the only stop sign on Ada and take a right. This leads you down the hill and across the bridge. On your left is the first access point at Curtis Switch. It is possible to wade up and down stream from this point. The second access point is further down this same road on the left.
The second way to get to Curtis Switch is to head north towards Blairsville on 515 from Blue Ridge and take a left at the Hwy 60 intersection headed north. After traveling a few miles past Mineral Bluff you will reach Curtis Switch Rd. on your left. Continue on this road until you reach the access before the bridge on your right.
Both points are fishable up and downstream alike. It will eventually become too deep to continue and you will have to turn around. Do not exit the river except for the public access points as this is all private property.
Horseshoe Bend Park
The main intersection of Hwy 515 in Blue Ridge is Hwy 5. If you pass McDonald's on your right then Mercier's Apple Orchard on your left you have headed the correct direction on Hwy 5. Continue on Hwy5 until its completion at the three-way stop in McCaysville/Copper Hill. At this intersection take a right. The road will split and you will stay right continuing with the river. After approximately a mile you will see a large sign with Horseshoe Bend Park on your right. Turn into the entrance of the park.
Horseshoe is by far the largest public access area and can be waded up and down stream. Below the fish traps will be usually productive as is the deep cuts in the rocks through the center of the park. You can wade downstream until it gets too deep near the train trestle. You can wade a little bit past the turnaround at the top of the park.
Toccoa River Delayed Harvest | Directions and Information
The 1.2 mile stretch of the headwaters of the Toccoa River designated catch-and-release Delayed Harvest spans from November 1st to May 14th. It is artificial only during this time of the year and catch-and-release only. The state heavily stocks this area and it is a great option during the colder months. Wading can be very tricky once the CFS (water flow measurement, cubic feet per second) gets above 425. It is up to the angler to decide what water levels they are willing to wade in.
From Blue Ridge, GA takes Aska Rd. until you reach the steel bridge (Shallowford Bridge) on the left and cross the bridge. Turn right and you can begin to fish once you reach the first yellow forest service sign until Sandy Bottom Canoe Launch.
Once you are past the Forrest Service sign there are plenty of good pull offs along the river to fish. To access the river that bends away from the road your best bet is to hike down the foot path that follows the power line at the fork in the road. Once on the bank of the river, there is a foot path that can be followed up or down stream.
Coopers Creek Wildlife Management
Directions from Blue Ridge: take US 515 north for 4 miles to GA Hwy 60; turn right and go 2 miles to Morganton, GA. In Morganton, turn right on GA Hwy. 60 south for 15.5 miles. Turn left on Forest Service Road 4, go 6 miles.
This Toccoa River tributary is right up there with Rock Creek when it comes to heavily stocked streams. With many Forest Service campgrounds on its banks, Cooper Creek is a great place to take a family. This seasonal stream is not just home to stocked trout, though. There are also good populations of wild browns and rainbows, and native trout that can be found in some of its headwaters. The main stretch of Cooper Creek is accessible to the public, and much of it is located on national forest land.
Forrest Service Campground Information
Rock Creek | Chattahoochee National Fish Hatchery
From Blue Ridge, take Highway 60-S towards Dahlonega for 20.8 miles. Turn right on Rock Creek Rd. The hatchery itself is 4.5 miles back but you can fish once you see national forest signs.
This popular stream, located mostly in Fannin County, is home to one of the largest populations of stocked trout in the state. Rock Creek, on Blue Ridge WMA, is easily accessible, and there’s a federal fish hatchery right on the creek.
Above the hatchery, there’s a small impoundment that is stocked a few times early in the season which offers still-water trout fishing. Rock Creek is an excellent place to take children and trout newbies. It is regularly stocked during the stocking season, running roughly from the end of March until the end of summer depending on the weather.
Little Rock Creek, which feeds into Rock Creek, is a fun place to explore and look for gorgeous wild fish to catch and release.
Directions from Blue Ridge, take Aska Rd. until it ends at a three way stop, right on Newport Rd. until it ends at a three way stop, left on Doublhead Gap which will turn to gravel. At the three way split stay right on to FSR 58. Once you reach the large National Forrest sign you are on public land from that point upstream.
Noontootla Creek runs off a steep ridge in Blue Ridge WMA and dumps into the upper Toccoa River near Dial in Fannin County. Most of this stream’s public access is off of U.S. Forest Road 58, and it includes everything from small stream fishing in its headwaters to bigger areas capable of being fished with 9-foot fly-rods.
Special regulations on this wild-trout stream state that only artificial lures may be used and only one fish longer than 16 inches may be kept. This rule effectively makes the stream almost entirely catch-and-release. While fish longer than 16 inches are certainly a possibility in Noontootla — especially during the fall and spring breeding periods — the typical fish is a healthy 9- to 13-inch rainbow or brown trout.
Some of the creek’s tributaries are also home to southern Appalachian brook trout, and the 16-inch size limit applies to them as well, making it a haven for the little fish to thrive in.
Certain parts of Noontootla can be tough to wade. The key is to go slowly. Don’t get ahead of yourself and you won’t make as many mistakes.
Directions from Blue Ridge, GA to Dally Gap access, take Hwy-5 for 3.7 miles to Hwy 2 on your left, continue on Hwy-2 for 10.3 miles and turn right on to FSR 22-2 and continue for 3.2 miles. parking is available at the trail head. There are many access points to the Jack's river but this is the easiest hike in at around 2 miles. Inside the vast Cohutta Federal Wilderness Area and WMA, this wild trout stream is a serene setting for anglers to pursue Georgia trout in. Because of the wilderness-area designation, the woods and waters of the Cohutta's are spectacular. It’s not a trip for the faint-hearted though, as the shortest hike to the Jacks River is at least a few miles along a mountain trail. The stories of truly big fish coming from the Jacks seem to have slowed in the last few years, possibly due to the long period of drought conditions we’ve had. Still, though I think with rainfall amounts back up, it may just take a few years until we bounce back. When fly-fishing the Jacks, always try to match the hatch, no matter what time of year it is. If you’re tossing plugs or spinners, try gold, chartreuse and black as primary colors of your lures. Access to the Jacks is rough to moderate at best. Be sure to study maps carefully and take all common-sense precautions when planning a trip into the Cohutta. Parking areas and trails into the Jacks River are located in western Fannin County, off U.S. Forest Road 22 at Daly Gap and several other locations along the road