Beautiful, clear streams of the Smoky Mountains, combined with the mild year-round weather and truly fantastic mountain scenery, make Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg ideal for a day spent casting a line. The Great Smoky Mountains National Park boasts more than 2,900 miles of streams, with about 20% large enough to support trout populations — plenty of room for anglers from across the country to come and test their skills! Many streams outside the boundaries of the national park also provide excellent fishing opportunities around Pigeon Forge, TN. Almost everywhere you turn in the Smokies awaits a new angling adventure, so grab a guide, catch a whopper, and make memories!
The Big 3 | Local Angling Companies
There are 3 major angling companies in the area that provide fishing guides for those wishing to spend a day on the water. If you’re looking for great angling in and around Pigeon Forge, these top local guides are your golden ticket. They’ll offer the tips and tricks you need for a fantastic day of fishing in the Smokies!
Number 1 on our list is The Smoky Mountain Angler — the oldest fly shop in Gatlinburg (established in 1988) and the only fly-fishing outfitter in town. They offer high-quality fishing gear from top brands, hand-tied and commercial flies, rental equipment, and guide services with guides that boast decades of fishing experience among them. Conveniently located just minutes from Pigeon Forge, you’ll be a hop, skip, and a jump away from your cabin rental to reeling in a big one! With a range of guided tour options (both half and full days) and a maximum client-to-guide ratio of 3:1, look forward to an exciting and personal experience. They even offer loaner gear (in limited sizes), which is included in the price.
The Smoky Mountain Angler
469 Brookside Village Way
Gatlinburg, TN 37738
Say hello to number 2: Smokies Angling Adventures Guide Service — offering year-round guided fishing trips on the streams, rivers, and lakes of East Tennessee. As a top angling service for Pigeon Forge visitors, they specialize in crappie, bluegill, smallmouth and largemouth bass, trout, and striper fishing excursions. Each fishing excursion is led by a professional United States Coast Guard licensed guide. Along with taking you to the top fishing spots in the area, they offer on-the-water teaching about casting, locating fish, pattern fishing, reading electronics, seasonal patterns, and structure fishing. And if you forget your lucky tackle, they’ve got you covered (bait included)! Just remember to bring food and drinks to stay energized and hydrated while taking in the gorgeous natural scenery.
Smokies Angling Adventures Guide Service
3520 Dockery Drive
Mascot, TN 37806
Last (but not least!) and located just under an hour from Pigeon Forge, 3 Rivers Angler offers professionally guided trips throughout the Tennessee River area. Their experienced crew knows the best times to fish, the correct lures to use, and the best streams to visit. And they are more than happy to instruct those wishing to learn more about angling, from newbies on the water to seasoned anglers. Each guided trip (tackle and flies included) brings something new; some are easy, while others are more challenging. Be sure to let your guide know of any physical limitations so they can best accommodate your needs.
3 Rivers Angler
5113 Kingston Pike
Knoxville, TN 37919
Who Needs a Guide?!
Of course, you don’t have to have a guide to go angling in Pigeon Forge. Just get a Tennessee fishing license and follow the local rules and regulations. Whether you spend an afternoon or an entire weekend fishing, you’ll find yourself swept away by the beauty of the area and the range of fish available! It’s a wonderful way to spend some peaceful alone time in the serenity of the mountains. It’s also ideal for a father-son trip or a guys’ weekend. Just imagine casting a line in the flowing waters of Pigeon Forge with the diversity of trees and wildlife surrounding you. Angling in Pigeon Forge will leave you with memories to last a lifetime!
Fish Variety in the Smokies
Within the lakes, streams, and rivers of the Great Smoky Mountains, anglers will come across a wide variety of fish. Within the 100s of miles of fish-filled streams in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park are 67 species in 12 different families. There are even several federally protected fish species within the park: spotfin chub, duskytail darter, smoky madtom, and yellowfin madtom.
Anglers may come across one or more of the following species.
• rock, largemouth, white, spotted & smallmouth bass
• redbreast, green & redear sunfish
• rainbow, brown & brook trout
• white & black crappies
Fishing in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Just down the road from Pigeon Forge is the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, home to many miles of fishing streams. In March 2015, officials in the park announced the reopening of the 8.5-mile Lynn Camp Prong to fishing. The reopening of the stream marks a pivotal point in the park’s history. It’s the first time since the park’s establishment in 1934 that all streams in the park are open to fishing! Now, anglers have even more opportunities for fishing in this beautiful part of the world.
If you’re planning to spend a day fishing in the national park, here’s what you need to know!
• Over 13? Resident or nonresident, you need a valid fishing license from TN.
• TN resident over 65? You may obtain a special state license.
• Year-round fishing is permitted in open waters.
• Fishing begins 30 minutes before sunrise & ends 30 minutes after sunset.
• Is there a limit? 5 brook, rainbow, or brown trout, smallmouth bass, or a combination are allowed + 20 rock bass each day (or in possession).
• What about size? Brook, rainbow, and brown trout as well as smallmouth bass must be at least 7 inches.
• You are allowed 1 handheld rod with a single hook & dropper flies (up to 2 flies on a leader).
Pigeon Forge, TN Cabins
After a beautiful day by the water, head home to your lovely Pigeon Forge cabin rental. With so many options to choose from, we’re sure you’ll find just what you’re looking for in a Smoky Mountain escape. The amenities offered with Pigeon Forge, TN Cabins will provide you with comfort and relaxation after a day of fishing fun. Browse for an outdoor hot tub, big screen TV, indoor jetted tub, beautiful mountain views, game tables, and more!
On your own or with a friend? Check out our 1-2 bedroom cabins, perfectly sized for a quiet weekend in the mountains. We also offer 3-6 bedroom cabins, large-group cabins, luxury cabins, pet-friendly cabins, and budget-friendly cabins — something for every angler! Our cabins also offer full kitchens and grills, so you can cook your fresh-caught fish for a well-earned dinner as you breathe in the fresh mountain air on deck or relax inside your cozy cabin among the trees.