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Water flow: 161cfs
Visibility: 16 inches
Water temperature at mid-day: 48 Degrees F
Water condition: Clear
Best time of day to fish: Early morning and late afternoon
Best stretch: Any of the public access points downstream from the dam.
Best access point: Indian Draft, Smith Bride, The Damn, Petticoat Junction.
Fly fishing hatches in order of importance:
Fish species: Rainbow, Brown trout
Fishing season: Winter
Nearest airport: Roanoke
Recommended fly fishing leader: 9 Foot Leader
Recommended fly fishing tippet: 5X Tippet
Best fly fishing rod: 9' 5 Weight Fly Rod
Best floating fly line: WF Trout Fly Line
Best sinking fly line: Streamer Stripper Sink Tip Fly Line
Often described as one of the top southern trout fisheries, the lower Jackson below Gathright damn offers both wild rainbow and brown trout angling opportunities to the fly angler. Whether it's drifting a size 26 midge with 8x tippet or seducing some of the larger fish with a size 4 zonker, the lower Jackson has many offerings for the fly fishing enthusiast. Operators of the dam do a great job of maintaining ...
a relatively steady flow of cold clean water.. Its waters hold a multitude of diverse aquatic invertebrates and forage fish for these trout to feed upon.
Access is limited and trespassing is a serious deal here. The state discontinued stocking trout on the lower Jackson in 1993. However, the river has proven itself time after time in yielding strong numbers of wild trout.
Just below Gathright Dam is the tailwater section that is open to public fishing. Small tippet, small flies, and long leaders work best in this section. Summer time water temps average in the 50’s and low 60’s which make for great southern summer trout fishing.
There are other public water access points, but float fishing is by far the best way to fish this section of river.
The area immediately below the dam has lots of didymo. Keep your nymphs off the bottom or spend your time checking the hook after every cast. Swung soft hackle flies are very effective there. The algae doesn't extend very far downstream so standard rigs work fine at the other public access points.
Cold most of the week