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Ultimate Guide To Fishing in the Great Smoky Mountains

Fishing in the Great Smoky Mountains!!!

If you’re planning to do some fishing in the Great Smoky Mountains, you’ve come to the right place to get the catch of your dreams! The Great Smoky Mountains is one of the last, wild trout habitats in the eastern portion of the United States. There are over 2,100 miles of stream that offer a wide variety of experiences. You can find both trout and bass in the streams that wind their way through the Great Smoky Mountains.

Who Can Get A Fishing License?

Before you can do any fishing, the first thing you need to have is a Tennessee Fishing License. Just like any license, there are certain criteria that must be met in order to get your fishing license. Here’s a simple breakdown of who needs a license…
•Tennessee Resident or Non-Resident over the age of 13
•If you’re a resident of Tennessee and over the age of 65, you may obtain a special license from the state.
•North Carolina Resident or Non-Resident over the age of 16.
•If you’re a resident of North Carolina and over the age of 70, you may obtain a special license from the state.
•Children from both Tennessee and North Carolina under the age of 13, are subject to the same limits and regulations as adults.
So, essentially, anyone can get a license to fish in the Great Smoky Mountains.

How Much Does A Fishing License Cost?

You’re in luck! To do some fishing in the Great Smoky Mountains, you won’t have to break the bank. If you are visiting our area and won’t need a year long license, you’re going to love this!

Tennessee ResidentsFishing in the Great Smoky Mountains
1-Day- No Trout- $6.50
1-Day- All Species- $12
County of Resident Fishing- $11
Trout- $22

Non-Tennessee Residents
3-Day- No Trout- $20.50
3-Day- All Species- $40.50
10-Day- No Trout- $30.50
10-Day- All Species- $61.50
Annual- No Trout- $50
Annual- All Species- $99

Note: These prices are subject to change, visit the TWRA Fisheries Management Division page for more details and a complete price list.

Where Can I Get A License?

You can save time by going online to the Tennessee Online License Center and ordering your fishing license online. If you would rather get your license in-person, there are plenty of places in the area to get your fishing license.

Pigeon Forge

Clabough’s Market
405 Wears Valley Rd.
Pigeon Forge, TN. 37863
(865)-453-0729

J & B Market
4520 Parkway
Pigeon Forge, TN. 37863
(865)-453-1807

Pigeon Forge Hardware
2519 McGill St.
Pigeon Forge, TN. 37863
(865)-428-8898

Rocky Top Outfitters
3361 Parkway
Pigeon Forge, TN. 37863
(865)-429-3474

Gatlinburg

Gatlinburg City Hall
1230 East Parkway
Gatlinburg, TN. 37738
(865)-436-1400

Ace Hardware of Gatlinburg
1025 East Parkway
Gatlinburg, TN. 37738
(865)-436-5173

Old Smoky Outfitters
511 Parkway
Gatlinburg, TN. 37738
(865)-430-1936

Smoky Mountain Angler
376 East Parkway
Gatlinburg, TN. 37738
(865)-436-8746

Sevierville

K-Mart
217 Forks of The River Pkwy.
Sevierville, TN. 37862
(865)-428-0014

Seymour Bait and Tackle
1019 Boyds Creek Rd.
Seymour, TN 37865
(865)-573-9337

Wal-Mart
1414 Parkway
Sevierville, TN. 37862
(865)-429-0029

Wishing I Was Fishin
1405 Douglas Dam Rd.
Sevierville, TN. 37862
(865)-774-7011

Note: You can NOT purchase a fishing license in the National Park.

Let’s Go Fishing!!!

You’ve got your rod and reel, your license, now it’s time to find your spot for the day. There are several locations in the Great Smoky Mountains to go fishing and each places offers something a little different.

Abrams Creek
Abrams Creek is located at the western end of the National Park along Abrams Falls trail in Cades Cove. Many fishermen consider this to be one of the best streams in the parks with both trout and small-mouth bass fishing.

Big Creek
Big Creek is located near I-40 at the Northeastern end of the National Park. Like Abrams, you can expect trout and small-mouth bass to be biting.

Douglas Lake
Douglas Lake may be one of the most popular destinations to fish in the Great Smoky Mountains. The lake borders Sevierville and is known for great fishing and boating. Bass and crappie fishing is the most popular at Douglas Lake.

Hazel Creek
Hazel Creek is certainly one of the best trout streams in the National Park. It offers a wide diversity of species. It’s located at the southern end of the National Park and also has trout and small-mouth bass fishing.

Little Pigeon River
If you’re main focus is trout fishing, the Little Pigeon River is perhaps the premier trout fishing stream in Tennessee. There are small-mouth bass in the water as well. There are actually 3 forks to the Little Pigeon River. The river splits in Sevierville. The West Fork flows through Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg.

What Else Do I Need To Know About Fishing in the Great Smoky Mountains?

Fishing in the Great Smoky MountainsYou’re allowed to fish year-round in the park and daily from 30 minutes before sunrise until 30 minutes after sunset. There are certain streams that are closed in order to protect certain fish, but those are clearly marked. If you plan to fish in Gatlinburg, there is a special license you need to acquire, but you can get that with your license in person at the city locations.

Like most places, there is a daily limit to what you are allowed to catch. Here’s a breakdown…
•Any combination of brown trout, or small-mouth bass totaling five (5). Once you reach that limit, you must stop fishing.
•The size limit for rainbow, small-mouth and brown trout is a minimum of 7 inches. Rock bass have no minimum. Any trout or small-mouth bass that’s less than 7 inches MUST be returned to the water immediately.

Lures, bait and equipment also have restrictions…
•One hand-held rod, artificial flies or single hook lures and dropper flies may be used.
•Here is what is prohibited: minnows, worms, corn, cheese, bread, pork rinds, liquid scents, salmon eggs, and natural baits along the stream.

Fishing in the Great Smoky Mountains can be a fun time for the entire family. Just remember to stay safe, clean up after yourself and HAVE FUN!!!