Fishing in the Blue Ridge Parkway can be a deeply satisfying experience, as long as you keep the following items in mind:

  • Regulations can vary by local area, so check first with a local ranger if you have any questions.
  • At each designated fishing area, regulations applicable there will be posted.
  • You must obey all state licensing requirements. A fishing license from either VA or NC is valid throughout Parkway lands.
  • Fishing season conforms to state standards except that no fishing may occur in Parkway waters from 30 minutes after sunset to 30 minutes before sunrise.
  • Limits have been established for each body of “special waters” and can be found posted at each stream bank or lakeshore.
  • NC special waters include Basin Creek and its tributaries in Doughton Park, Boone Fork, Cold Prong Branch, Laurel Creek, Sims Creek, and Camp Creek.
  • VA special waters include Abbott Lake, Little Stoney Creek, and Otter Lake.
  • In or near “general waters” you may not use live/dead fish, non-preserved fish eggs or amphibians as bait, nor are you allowed to dig for bait on Parkway lands.
  • In or near “special waters” no organic bait whatsoever may be used, only single-hook artificial lures.