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The N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission will implement delayed-harvest regulations on 33 trout waters in 18 western North Carolina counties on Oct. 1. Before Oct. 1, hatchery-supported regulations apply to these waters.
Under delayed-harvest regulations, no trout can be harvested or possessed from these waters between Oct. 1, 2013, and one half-hour after sunset on June 6, 2014. No natural bait is allowed, and anglers can fish only with single-hook, artificial lures. An artificial lure is defined as a fishing lure that neither contains nor has been treated with any substance that attracts fish by the sense of taste or smell.
The Commission stocks delayed-harvest trout waters from fall through spring with high densities of trout to increase anglers’ chances of catching fish. Delayed-harvest trout waters, posted with diamond-shaped, black-and-white signs, are popular fishing destinations for anglers who enjoy catch-and-release trout fishing.
The Wildlife Commission classified three new waters in the delayed–harvest program this year:
Ashe County — South Fork New River (Todd Island Park)
Clay County — Fires Creek (USFS Road 340A to the foot bridge in the USFS Fires Creek picnic area)
Graham County – (Big) Snow Bird Creek (USFS foot bridge at the old railroad junction to USFS Road 2579
Due to ongoing research by N.C. State University on the movements of stocked trout, the October stockings for East Prong Roaring River and Stone Mountain Creek in Wilkes County and Little River in Alleghany County have been postponed until Oct. 14.
For a complete list of delayed-harvest trout waters, stocking dates, information on delayed-harvest regulations and trout fishing maps, visit the Commission’s trout fishing page.