Toccoa Tail race

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thumper523

Senior Member
A buddy and I fished the section between the dam and Curtis Switch Saturday and hardly saw or caught any fish. We used to fish this years ago and catch 60-80 each on a good day. What's wrong? Has TVA messed this once considered "The Trout Capital of Ga" up with their dam work? Has it been over-fished by locals who keep a dozen every time they go? I had even noticed the stockers looked smaller this year. And by the way, It has grass, algae and slime all in it. They did add some nice ramps for access.
 
This is a touchy subject as we can see! Both comments however are valid... I stopped fishing the tailwater about 5 years ago. Public areas to crowded and when I would float it, it was fun but I would always see people in a canoe with two poles each going. One casting a spinner or rapala and one trolling out the back with a night crawler. The land owners have signs out requesting to catch and release when floating through but I'm thinking very few did. Just friction I didn't want to be a part of. Sometime all the picture postings of huge browns and GON mag articles and pics draw the wrong crowds..
 
This is a touchy subject as we can see! Both comments however are valid... I stopped fishing the tailwater about 5 years ago. Public areas to crowded and when I would float it, it was fun but I would always see people in a canoe with two poles each going. One casting a spinner or rapala and one trolling out the back with a night crawler. The land owners have signs out requesting to catch and release when floating through but I'm thinking very few did. Just friction I didn't want to be a part of. Sometime all the picture postings of huge browns and GON mag articles and pics draw the wrong crowds..
Land owners request you catch and release,I generally always practice catch and release but land owners request they should have thought about that before they bought land on the side of a river especially one that can be floated .
 
DNR says you can't fish out a trout creek. Surely the Toccoa can't be "fished out." Maybe you just weren't throwing what they wanted? Everyone has days like that sometimes.
 
Thread starter #6

thumper523

Senior Member
DNR says you can't fish out a trout creek. Surely the Toccoa can't be "fished out." Maybe you just weren't throwing what they wanted? Everyone has days like that sometimes.
We threw everything, flies and spinners. I have fished this river for over 30 years from Deep Hole to McCaysville.
 

Jcurtis4

Senior Member
Trout fishing in the tailwater has declined recently, mainly r/t a lot of tourism and guided trips. I quit floating toccoa on weekends because there was so much competition at the good holes. Go on a weekday and it will be less crowded/pressure. But it is not as good as it use to be
 
huh???

A buddy and I fished the section between the dam and Curtis Switch Saturday and hardly saw or caught any fish. We used to fish this years ago and catch 60-80 each on a good day. What's wrong? Has TVA messed this once considered "The Trout Capital of Ga" up with their dam work? Has it been over-fished by locals who keep a dozen every time they go? I had even noticed the stockers looked smaller this year. And by the way, It has grass, algae and slime all in it. They did add some nice ramps for access.
I'm honestly shocked.
I think your numbers are a bit over inflated. you would not have enough time to float the river 7 miles and catch 60-80 fish in any day, at any point in history, without someone rowing for you.
To not see a trout on this stretch would take muddy water right now. There's no shortage of fish in the first few miles, or really any stretch of the river right now. I've fished it 4 times in the last week, including Tammen Park and have seen and caught trout every time. I will admit the big fish population has gone the way of big browns, not big rainbows as it used to be. I don't think I have to argue to convince anyone that browns are far harder to fool. However, a friend of mine landed a 27" brown this morning, in the rain, less than two miles into the same float you did.
My guess is the algea got you. The green slime you mention is there, its a pain in the butt, but if you clean your flies after every single bump (I know I've don't it all day long for weeks now) you'll catch fish. If you don't, you wont. This green slime is new this year and is a result of the accumulation of silt in the river due to the fact that the TVA hasn't generated in over 3 months. I've never seen it before in my life, but I've also never seen 3 months without any generation in my life.
As far as not seeing fish, try a pair of Costas, or a new eyeglass prescription. There's a hole we call aquarium bend in that stretch, where you certainly must have been staring at the sky while you floated over.
It always amazes me how everyone's first assumption is that the locals have raped it, or the guides have overguided it or the TVA has hurt it again and it still hasn't recovered. It's simply a different, more challenging fishery. There are more than enough fish in it. Think of it this way, with the scale in difficulty going from one to 10, (like how they sometimes label hiking trails, or settings on a video game). The tailwater prior to the fish kill in 2009, was a level 3 stream, pretty well anyone on earth could go and catch fish there. Now, with very limited holdovers of rainbows, we're becoming a river full of holdover and wild browns (of all sizes) I'd say the tailwater is now a level 7 stream.
Trust me, It' not the river, the TVA, the stocking, us locals, us guides or the fish. I spent over 300 days last year on the tailwater, I went a total of 9 with no trout at all, 4 days of that were with clients, the rest were by myself. Maybe work on fishing better and more often, and blaming the things you conjur up less. It's ok to have a slow day on da river. Those that say they never do have a special name-liars. PM me if you'd like specific help.
 
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Thread starter #9

thumper523

Senior Member
There's a hole we call aquarium bend in that stretch, where you certainly must have been staring at the sky while you floated over.

When we got to that hole, there were fish, and I do have good glasses. problem was 5 guys at the top of hole with lines in water on bottom, 4 people on the dock and 3 below us. I had a good one strike a fly, twice, but he was real skiddish. Then we just moved on. Got to the bridges and about 30-40 canoes showed up and were taking out at the private boat ramp and we never fished that hole as people were falling in, tipping over and creating a whole lot of disturbance. Every good hole we fish had someone anchored and bottom fishing. I know there's fish, it's just not as good.
 
If it's anything like the chatuge tail water, there's plenty of fish, but they are very finicky, especially when the water is not being generated, when the tva is generating they will hit almost anything, I've even caught them on gummy worms, when it's off, you better know your equatic insects, or your dead in the water so to speak.
 
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