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We just got back from the mountains. It rained for six days then cleared up on July 5th. My wife and I went salmon fishing for the first time this season. We put the lines out and had the first fish in about 20 minutes. My wife said "wow a fish just jumped over there". I did not look over there, I looked at the rods and one was bucking. She caught the first fish, a beautiful 16" female. Yep, my wife has no hair do to chemo but she still can fish! The second fish was about 20 minute later, a nice 17" male. We fished for about an hour then went home. Can't mess with success. Shorts Water Food Outdoor recreation Boat
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We have salmon in NC???? Learn something new every day!
I didn't know that either. Learned yet another interesting tidbit today! Nice fish, and thanks for the report!
 

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My son and I would like to drive down and fish Nantahala Lake. We live up in Boone. Without giving away any secrets, could someone advise us how to get started? We're not familiar with the lake or fishing techniques used for salmon and other species there? We have kayaks and, hopefully, my little john boat will be ready soon...if I can find someone up this way who can repair a 3hp motor. But I suppose that's a post for a different category. Thanks.
 

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My son and I would like to drive down and fish Nantahala Lake. We live up in Boone. Without giving away any secrets, could someone advise us how to get started? We're not familiar with the lake or fishing techniques used for salmon and other species there? We have kayaks and, hopefully, my little john boat will be ready soon...if I can find someone up this way who can repair a 3hp motor. But I suppose that's a post for a different category. Thanks.
Read the other Salmon thread. Kokanee like hoochies baited with white shoepeg corn behind flashers and they're deep.
 

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Thank you Troutgirl. I wasn't familiar with the fishing term hoochie. Did a Google search and now I'm up to speed. My son and I are new to mountain fishing so any other helpful hints you may have will be appreciated. Take care.
 

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Thank you Troutgirl. I wasn't familiar with the fishing term hoochie. Did a Google search and now I'm up to speed. My son and I are new to mountain fishing so any other helpful hints you may have will be appreciated. Take care.
I'm having tremendous success fishing hoochies for Rainbows in Chilhowee and Calderwood Lake. The Shasta Pee Wee Wiggle Hoochie in Purple Splatter and Blue UV. I put about an inch of nightcrawler on the front hook. My favorite Flasher for trout has been the Father Murphy Mini-Flasher (Doger) in green. I also like the Crystal Basin Wild Thing in silver....the green might be better for Kokanee...? The hoochies come with a leader about 2-3 feet long. I tie them to the smallest size Split Ring when I open them. Then I can easily move them from one dodger/flasher to another. It seems as if Natahala's Kokanee seem to prefer hoochies that are yellow, white, pink, or bright green with a spinning blade. Some of the hoochies have a regular little spinner blade. Other have a little two-bladed propeller type blade on the front. They call these "Smile Blades". I don't know which work best. You have to put white, Shoepeg Corn on the hooks. This is what they ultimately want. On one trip to Natahala, I had the wrong corn. I picked up Hominy because it was white on the label, bad move! I thought it was regular corn, but no. I put it on my hoochies on the downrigger and didn't get a strike. I was pulling lead-core line with a purple hoochie on a second line. I did catch a plump, 17" Rainbow, a Smallmouth, and a Yellow Perch on that line.

I've done remarkably well with the purple hoochie at Chilhowee Lake the past two weeks. Last Friday I caught a 21" Rainbow there. I caught a limit of 7 and 5 came on hoochies. Rainbow seem to take hoochies as emerging nymphs...?

If you set up to fish hoochies, you can catch trout with 'em too....
 

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Wow! Fantastic information! Didn't know, however, that fishing for Kokanee required downriggers. Something I don't have and is probably expensive to buy. How would I fish your rigs for other species. Are they also deep? I sure do appreciate your time and help.
 

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Wow! Fantastic information! Didn't know, however, that fishing for Kokanee required downriggers. Something I don't have and is probably expensive to buy. How would I fish your rigs for other species. Are they also deep? I sure do appreciate your time and help.
I've seen manual downriggers for $90 to $200. The Scotty 1099 electric downrigger I have was $350. I'm 60 years old and I don't want to have to crank one up. When the fish you're after are more than about 50 feet down, you probably just need a downrigger.

I'm fishing hoochies on lead-core line in Chilhowee and Calderwood lakes. I have an Okuma Convector 45D reel with plenty of room for lead-core line and a footage counter. I'm using 18 pound test lead-core line that sinks about 5 feet per 10 yards out at about 2 mph. I have a 100 foot leader. When I started out I was using a shorter leader. My number of strikes has gone up since I went to a longer leader. Besides hoochies, I also fish spoons, plugs without much dive, and cowbell attractors with a nightcrawler or minnow behind it. When I caught a trout at Natahala, I had 275 feet of line out. The hoochie was probably about 30-40 feet down...? It could of been a bit deeper because I was trolling slowly with my electric motor.

In Chilhowee and Calderwood lakes with their dam-cooled water, the trout sit shallower and I put out 200-250 feet of line and troll with the gas motor. I put out at least 200 feet of line because the fish are boat shy. I think that I'm putting the hoochies below the fish. I think that they look down and say to themselves, that's an emerging nymph, that looks like breakfast. I'm also picking up an occasional Smallmouth or Yellow Perch. Smallmouths love nymphs too, it's in their river instincts. As far as the trout go, it seems as if they'll grab the hoochies when they're not active enough to be chasing minnow plugs. Nymphs are a grab anytime snack.

Hoochies have become my best trout lure!
 

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Troutgirl, seems I have a lot to learn. It's almost overwhelming. I thought you just baited a line with a sinker and fished. Was I ever wrong. I'm your age too but, unfortunately, an electric down rigger is over of my budget. Guess I'll be crankin'. Will let you know when I get all this gear together. Thank you so much for the ton information.
 

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Troutgirl, seems I have a lot to learn. It's almost overwhelming. I thought you just baited a line with a sinker and fished. Was I ever wrong. I'm your age too but, unfortunately, an electric down rigger is over of my budget. Guess I'll be crankin'. Will let you know when I get all this gear together. Thank you so much for the ton information.
You really should get some downrigger advice from somebody more experienced with them than me. I've only used mine about 5 times. I have not caught a fish with it yet. I fish Chilhowee more than my other trout lakes and I really don't need it there. I bought it so I could hopefully catch a Lake Trout at Watauga and a Kokanee in Natahala. I used it at Calderwood to pull a spoon for Browns but didn't get a strike....I just kept catching Rainbows on a hoochie, using lead-core. Next time out on Chilhowee or Calderwood, I may just put a hoochie out on the downrigger, then I may finally catch somethin' using it...?

I can tell you that you should pick up a trolling reel with a counter, Okuma is what I'm using. They make small ones you can use with mono or braid and larger ones that will hold lead-core. I might pick up an ultra light Kokanee rod and reel that they sell out west for Kokanee fishing.

Go look at the stuff at www.kokaneetackle.com :)
 

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Hoochies! They are great for all kinds of fish, mountain to the sea. I was wondering when they would take off around here. My favorite are Gold Star, Shasta, and Pline. I also agree with the spatter back UV suggestion.

Im also using Okuma convector 30 reels and they'll take a full core of lead with 50 yards or so of backing and a decent sized leader. I use the 20 size in the Convector and Magda for trolling with braid. They are pretty solid line counters. For rods I've got some really whippy 7'6" ugly stiks that work great, lots of give then some backbone and they are a good value.
 
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