Soque River Fly Fishing: Where Big Trouts Are Within Casting Distance

Have you heard about the Soque River in north Georgia, near Helen?  If not then do you know Ted Turner? The Soque River is the location of many avid fly-fishermen, including Ted Turner, and a visit to this pristine trout stream is totally worth a trip to north Georgia

I compare it similarly to streams I’ve fished on the South Island of New Zealand.  There is an abundance of foliage and monster trout waiting in the soft water ready to devour a bead head nymph drifting behind a heavy deer hair dry fly. In fact, this river is home to the state record Rainbow Trout.

Easily Catch Large Fish

It’s incredible to have this stream just over an hour from Atlanta. And, fishing folks are willing to pay a very high price to cast a line to these waters. Although the fish are grown in the stream through unnatural feeding processes, it doesn’t take away from the hard strikes as you real in your zipping lines with a large rainbow trout. You can even fish just with whatever fly you want to pick off these strong fish.

These fish pile up in the different pools and you can easily sight-cast.  The hard part is when you are casting to a particular trout many of the smaller fish will take your fly multiple times before you get the chance to draw the big one.  It is important to fish this stream when there is a decent flow, otherwise, the fish get a bit skittish and have much less fight in them.

Seeing Is Believing

If you really want to know the amount of fish in this stream as well as the size then just wait for a pellet hatch.  This occurs when a feeding system shoots out trout pellets on a timed increment and at this point, you see the water come alive to a boil.

It is much like a tuna-feeding frenzy as you see these torpedo-shaped trout speeding to the surface and nailing these pellets with ferocity.  You might have thought you were casting to a few select fish in the run before this happened, but afterward, you understand the sheer number of trout within this stream.

Epic Trip: Close Proximity

It is an awesome sight when you can cast a fly into the mix and hook into a bruiser that is all wound up.  These fish are strong and a nine-foot-five weight fly rod is almost not enough to land them ethically.  If you didn’t know any better you might think that these fish naturally reproduced in this trophy trout stream, but they are monitored and fed very strategically.  It makes for a short trip to an epic fishery.

Memories Of A Distant Land

Every time I fish this stream I am reminded of my adventure to New Zealand and in particular, I think of a special day fishing with cicada patterns on a tributary that flows into lake Taupo.  I had been told that tying on one of these large patterns is like bream fishing for trout and the first big take was for sure exactly this.  I was cast under a large kauri tree where I had seen a fish rise and after the second cast, I placed the fly perfectly under a low-hanging branch. 

It was like I saw it all occur before it even happened.  The fish sucked the fly in like a bream hitting a popping bug.  Then I set the hook and we were off to the races.  I knew that if I did not turn the head of this fish he would be too strong to land on the fluorocarbon line, especially with the branches growing into the water.  Before I even knew it this fish snapped me off.  This is exactly what happens on the Soque with these big strong fish when you are not ready for the power.  It is important to read the water and any obstructions that the fish could potentially break off on.

How To Fish The Soque River

All good things come with an asterisk. Most of the Soque River runs along private property so you can’t simply go strolling along the river and start fishing for these monster fish. You’ll need to get permission from one of the owners or hire a fishing guide that is allowed to take people to the waters. We recommend Unicoi Outfitters, and their contact information is below.

Unicoi Outfitters | (706) 878-3083
7082 S Main St | Helen, GA 30545
Visit their website here

Additional Fishing Guides & Supplies

Betty’s Country Store | (706) 878-2943
18 Yonah St | Helen, GA 30545
JC Outdoors | (229) 938-4458
8016 S. Main St. Suite B-1 | Helen, Georgia, GA 30545

Smithgall Woods State Park | (706) 878-3087
61 Tsalaki Trl| Helen, GA 30545
Visit their website here

How About A Cabin To Go With That Big Rainbow Trout?

When fishing the Soque river it is best to give yourself at least a couple of days to take on the excitement of this opportunity. Being comfortable during your stay helps you to enjoy the fishing experience all the more. Believe me, it can be heart pumping and you will need a good night’s rest after this day of fishing. If you’re planning a trip to the north Georgia mountains, consider staying in one of the luxury cabin rentals. Click here to view our cabins.

Our Additional Fishing Articles

We’ve got a series of articles that make up our fishing article hub. Here you’ll find blogs, links, images, and videos that help you have the best fishing experience in North Georgia. Here is a list of these resources.