Fannin County Offers Trout Fishing Of Every Kind

By Bob Borgwat

From its highland origins to beyond its breach of the powerhouse gates at Blue Ridge Dam, the Toccoa River forms the spine of trout fishing in Fannin County, the Trout Capital of Georgia.

Less than 3 miles from downtown Blue Ridge, the Toccoa spills cold water year-round from Lake Blue Ridge. Tammen Park flanks the river’s west side in the shadow of the powerhouse. Trout stockings take place weekly at the site, where bank fishermen soak baits like crickets, red worms, salmon eggs and Berkley’s PowerBait. Fly-fishermen and anglers with spinning tackle wade this first quarter-mile of the tailwater, armed with seasonal fly selections and lures that resemble small baitfish. Others launch drift boats to reach miles more of trout water that flows through woodlands and along stunning private homes.

Fifteen miles downstream, the Toccoa River enters Horseshoe Bend Park at the town of McCayesville, which shares the state border with Copperhill, Tenn. Trout are stocked here, too, on a weekly basis through June. Benches, pavilions and a playground shadow rocky shoals and long pools where anglers find good action in the catch-and-keep setting.

Above Lake Blue Ridge, the Toccoa flows for more than 20 miles from its origin in adjacent Union County. Along its way, the river flows through a patchwork of national forest land where fishermen access the river on foot, by canoe/kayak, at roadside pullouts and recreation sites. Rainbow trout are the primary species of trout in the Toccoa, but wild brown trout occupy some of the deeper and darker waters of the river.

Deep Hole National Recreation Area, off Highway 60, and Sandy Bottoms Canoe Access Site are maintained by the National Forest Service. Deep Hole features campsites and easy river access where hundreds of trout are seasonally released every other week through June. At Sandy Bottoms, the Toccoa is stocked monthly and managed under delayed harvest regulations. From Nov. 1 through May 15, trout anglers are restricted to using single-hook artificial lures/flies, and all trout must be immediately released unharmed. After May 15, fishing reverts regular Georgia trout regulations.

For many anglers, the tributaries to the Toccoa River play the most important part of trout fishing in Fannin County. Big Creek, Noontootla Creek, Coopers Creek, Rock Creek and Fightingtown Creek are the largest of these small streams that hold trout. Public access to these streams is scattered across the Chattahoochee National Forest, where graveled roads often run alongside the streams.

In other cases, fly fishers hike to reach tributaries where lighter fishing pressure promises a more remote fishing experience. Catches include wild rainbow, brown and the colorful indigenous brook trout. They’re not large, but the brookies hold a special attraction for anglers.

For more information about trout fishing in Fannin County, see the Reel Angling Adventures website at, or call the outfitter at 706-838-5259. The Fannin County trout stocking schedule and fishing regulations are available online at

Fishing Magazine, Coastal Angler & The Angler Magazine is your leading source for freshwater fishing and saltwater fishing videos, fishing photos, saltwater fishing.