Day 8 – Fly fishing on the Shenandoah River

Hi there, today was an awesome day. It was one of the events I was most looking forward too, a guided fly fishing trip on the Shenandoah River. We woke up around 630 and prepared to meet our guide, Kevin of South River Fly Shop, at the Elkton McDonalds. After a quick breakfast, we were on the road to the launch. After launching and setting up the boat, Kevin gave us some lessons on fly fishing. I was initially a bit intimidated of fly fishing, the sport is unfairly stereotyped. Casting, catching, and retrieving a fish can be difficult, or I first thought. Kevin’s instructions help put me at ease and I was actually casting a fly in no time. Our rig for the day was a 14 ft modular raft boat. It was pretty cool and held up to both the deep and shallow water of the river.

Below is a picture of some of the flys we used. It seemed today (overcast) the fish wanted top water poppers..

Right off of the first bend, we were on to fish. We caught a half dozen or so blue gill. Bream on the fly rod fight pretty hard! Here’s a picture of Aimee with her first fish of the day…

The float took place over about 3.5 river miles. We actually passed through some Class 2 rapids, this made for a fun ride down river..

There were points in the river where shallow rock allowed for wading. The water was cool but nothing like the waterfall in Stone Mountain, I’m still shaking from that plunge!



It was overcast in the morning, but the sun came out as the day progressed and allowed for great sight fishing for small mouth bass and bluegill. Sight fishing was a blast, I could have stayed out there all day! The fishing patterns here are different than anything I’ve fished before, the fish hang out in the slower parts of the river in the rock crevices. From there, the current forms a “bait” conveyer belt and the fish just have to sit and wait..

The views on the river were awesome. There were a bunch of rock cliffs and wooded areas, we even saw a deer crossing the river…

All in all, the day was better than I expected. We ended up with about a dozen blue gill and dozen small mouth bass. Aimee took the crown for the largest fish (13″ small mouth) for the day and she earned it. For some reason she usually finishes with the biggest fish, this isn’t the first trip where she beats me. That’s why I enjoy fishing with her, she’s good luck! At the end of the day, you couldn’t have payed me a million dollars to remove the smile off of my face. Until tomorrow…


3 comments on “Day 8 – Fly fishing on the Shenandoah River

  1. That sure seemed like a lot of fun. Y’all are going to have some great memories from this trip. I am happy for both of you.

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