Fishing in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park
If you want to fish in the Smokies there are some things you need to know about license requirements, fish limits and lure regulations. If you want to fish in one of our stocked fishing ponds at the Little Valley Mountain Resort the only requirement is have some fun and relax! All of the log cabins at the Little Valley Mountain Resort are on private property so no license is required to fish at our stocked fishing ponds. Matter of fact we will supply you with fishing poles free of charge if you forget to bring yours! Please note that fishing at Little Valley Resort is catch and release only.
There is close to 500 miles of fishable streams in the Smokies, from the upper prongs of Forney Creek at over 4,000 feet to the mouth of Abrams Creek, where it spills into Chilhowee Lake at less than 900 feet. Brook trout are the only native trout to the Smoky Mountains, but in the late 19th and early 20th century after the logging days were done, both brook and brown trout were stocked in the Smokies. Now, these three species, along with smallmouth bass in the lowest streams, thrive here.Fishing is permitted year-round in the Mountain Rivers and streams from 30 minutes before sunrise until 30 minutes after sunset.
Smoky Mountains National Park Fishing License Requirements
You must possess a valid fishing license or permit from either Tennessee or North Carolina to fish in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Either state license is valid throughout the park and no trout stamp is required. Fishing licenses and permits are not available in the park, but may be purchased in Sevierville, Pigeon Forge or Gatlinburg. Special permits are required for fishing in the cities of Gatlinburg and Cherokee North Carolina.Persons under 16 in North Carolina and under 13 in Tennessee are not required to obtain a license and are entitled to the adult daily bag and possession limits and are subject to all other regulations.
Daily Fish Limits in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Five (5) brook, rainbow or brown trout, smallmouth bass, or a combination of these may be caught each day or in possession, regardless of whether they are fresh, stored in an ice chest, or otherwise preserved. The combined total must not exceed five fish. Twenty (20) rock bass may be kept in addition to the trout and smallmouth bass limit. You must stop fishing immediately after obtaining the limit.The size limit for brook, rainbow, and brown trout along with the smallmouth bass is a 7-inch length minimum. There is no minimum size limit for rock bass. Trout or smallmouth bass caught less than the legal length must be immediately returned to the water from which it was taken.
Lures, Bait, and Equipment Regulations for fishing the Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Fishing is permitted only by the use of one hand-held rod. Only artificial flies or lures with a single hook may be used. Dropper flies may be used. Up to two flies on a leader. Use or possession of any form of fish bait or liquid scent other than artificial flies or lures on or along any park stream while in possession of fishing tackle is prohibited. Prohibited baits include, but are not limited to, minnows (live or preserved), worms, corn, cheese, bread, salmon eggs, pork rinds, liquid scents and natural baits found along streams. Use or possession of double, treble, or gang hooks is prohibited. Fishing tackle and equipment, including creels and fish in possession, are subject to inspection by authorized personnel.