The Nantahala is a freestone river that is 52 miles from Highlands. It is stocked with Brook, Brown, and Rainbow with Brown and Rainbows holding onto the stream born population. This is classic trout water full of runs, pools, and pocket water, which is great for the beginning fly angler to learn to read water. Nantahala also has wonderful hatches of both mayfly and caddis offering anglers great dry fly fishing in the Spring and Fall. There is a delayed harvest section of the river from October 1st through June 1st, but it is on hatchery regulations the rest of the year.
Directions: From Highlands take Highway 64 west to Franklin and turn left on Highway 441 south/64 west. Take Highway 64 west for 6 miles until you get to Old Murphy Road (across from Baptist Church) and turn right. Go down Old Murphy Road for 100 yards until you get to a small gas station then turn left on Wayah Road. Follow Wayah Road over the mountain and down the other side past Nantahala Lake until the road comes in contact with the river.