“Give a man a fish and he eats for a day. Teach a man to fish and you get rid of him for the whole weekend!” ...or something like that. Fly-fishing is a great way to unwind and enjoy the great outdoors. Plus, it makes for a perfect reason to travel. While it’s not necessarily an easy sport, it is most definitely addicting. Once you have mastered the waters in your area, you’ll want to start casting your line any place you can.
Luckily, some of the best fly-fishing spots can be found throughout the U.S. No matter what state you’re in, you’re likely just a short drive from these coveted waterways. So get your gear together and wade into our top picks for fly-fishing getaways!
Blue River, Colorado
The Blue River in Colorado moves south, winding its way 65 miles down. Depending on where and when you go, you may have a stretch of river all to yourself for the day.
And the scenery is nothing short of spectacular. It lies alongside dense ranchlands, splitting away from the Colorado River near the town of Kremmling. It’s like a remote oasis for fly-fishing enthusiasts.
Rock Creek, Montana
With the clear Montana sky, towering mountains and never-ending supply of fresh water, it only makes sense that Rock Creek is ideal for fly- fishers.
Head to this quaint creek for 52 miles of trout (rainbow, cutthroat, bull and brown) and Rocky Mountain whitefish.
Both the Beaverkill River and the Willowemoc Creek — located in the Catskills — are in many ways known as the place where fly-fishing got started and gained popularity.
With a picturesque backdrop and big angling culture, this is a great spot to fish for big brown trout and silvery wild brookies.
Snake River, Wyoming
The Snake River travels through southeastern Idaho and into Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Head to the South Fork of this river for some of the best fly-fishing in the whole country.
This area is home to one of the largest native cutthroat fisheries (outside of some National Parks). After a long day in the water, take to land to explore the historic town of Jackson, Wyoming. Get a big steak and think back on your wonderful day spent casting away.
Bristol Bay, Alaska
Alaska is home to some breathtaking wildlife — from brown bears to all the fish you can imagine. For fly-fishing, in particular, you could catch Arctic grayling, rainbow trout and Pacific salmon.
Just be sure to leave some fish in there for the bears. Based on their size, it’s safe to assume they could get pretty hangry.
Yellow Breeches Creek, Pennsylvania
If Alaska is too far to venture, fret not. There are plenty of prime locations right on the East Coast, with Yellow Breeches Creek in Pennsylvania being one of the best.
This is a good spot for those who are new to the sport of fly-fishing. The Cumberland Valley is packed full of rivers and streams that avid fly-fishers have used for generations. It shouldn’t be too difficult to score a catch or two.
Florida Keys, Florida
The Keys have some of the world’s best fishing opportunities, and fly-fishing is no exception. You could score bonefish, permit and the occasional 200-pound tarpon. No big deal, right?
Fishing in saltwater will be a new experience with unique challenges. But with these challenges also comes the chance for a huge catch — you won’t want to miss it!
Tanasee Creek, North Carolina
North Carolina isn’t only home to the Tar Heels, but to some fantastic fly-fishing as well. East of Tuckasegee, there are several stretches of freshwater that house tons of wild brown trout.
Tanasee Creek is found within the Nantahala National Forest and has one of the only designated fly-fishing trails in the U.S.
Reelin’ It In
Fly-fishing provides a remote escape alongside roaring rivers and quiet streams. While it definitely entails constant work throughout the day, landing a fish makes it all worth it! Whether you are fishing the waters you’ve memorized or discovering new ones, there’s no denying the sense of serenity and satisfaction it provides.