Fishing in the Great Smoky Mountains

Can you think of a more refined past-time in the Smokies than fishing? For centuries here in the mountains, locals and visitors, passing by either on foot, horse, buggy or automobile, have stopped by our streams and lakes to catch their dinner or have something they can't get at home.

The Smokies have over 2,000 miles of streams, featuring rainbow trout, brown trout, small-mouth bass, rock bass, and it's one of the few, true Smoky Mountain experiences that is permitted year-round, from 30 minutes before sunrise to 30 minutes after sunset. The area also features several stores, particularly around the Douglas Dam area of Sevierville (off of Highway 66 towards Kodak) that can fully equip you with everything you and your whole family or group will need to enjoy the day.

Some good places to fish in the Smokies are:

* Douglas Lake/Douglas Dam area.
* Little Pigeon River
* Downtown Gatlinburg
* Abrams Creek
* Big Creek
* Hazel Creek
* Little River

Some rules for fishing in the mountains:

* Children under the age of nine do not require licenses or permits of any kind, while adults must have the proper local and/or state fishing licenses.
* Tennessee Anglers 13 years and older need a fishing license to fish in the park and Tennessee state waters.
* North Carolina anglers 16 and older need a valid North Carolina fishing license to fish in the Park. The Great Smoky Mountains National Park does not sell licenses.
* You can obtain fishing license information and your actual fishing license from Smoky Mountain Angler. No trout stamp is required to fish in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Daily possession limits:

- Any combination of rainbow trout, brown trout, small mouth bass totaling five.
- 20 rock bass
- It is illegal to possess brook trout
- A person must stop fishing once reaching the limit.

Size limits:

- Rainbow and Brown trout: 7 inches minimum length
- Small mouth bass: 7 inches minimum length
- Rock bass: no minimum
- Brook trout are prohibited to possess and any fish below the minimum length limit must be released immediately.

Lures, bait, and equipment:

- Only one handheld rod may be used whether spin or fly rod.
- Only single hook artificial (treble hooks are not permitted)
- Bait must be fully artificial
- Liquid scents are not permitted.
- All equipment (rods, vest, baits) are subject to inspection by authorized Park staff.

Park regulations are also posted at pull-offs and other areas on streams and can be obtained at any park ranger station or visitor center.

Please see for additional information and necessary links.

Check out our Pigeon Forge cabins for your fishing trip to the Smokies.