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Teaching, Guiding and Fly Fishing: Unicoi Outfitters

By Elisha Neubauer

Ever wanted to get your feet wet in the area of fly fishing? You may be surprised to find that northern Georgia is a great place for fly-fishing. The state is also home to the well-desired trout. Unicoi Outfitters, based out of Helen, Georgia, offer classes and tours along the Chattahoochee River.

Jimmy Harris of Unicoi Outfitters explains, "Trout require clean, cold water and Georgia has an abundance of it. There are over 4,000 miles of designated trout streams in Georgia. Beyond trout, we also have world class fly fishing opportunities for striped bass, largemouth bass, spotted bass and shoal bass which are found only in the Chattahoochee River drainage system in north Georgia."

Every year, Unicoi Outfitters hosts over 2,400 anglers. They lead guided trips along the streams and they also offer beginner and intermediate classes to those wishing to become better fishermen. Harris and his team have many available options of which he says, "We offer one and two-day classes which are focused primarily on teaching the mechanics of casting, gear selection, fly selection, knots and on-stream fly fishing technique. For those who simply want to step in the river with us to see what it's like to fish for and, hopefully, catch a trout, we have a three hour introduction trip that is really a crash course in fly fishing. We call this our 'Gilligan Special,' 3-hour tour, lifetime adventure!"

As part of their services, Unicoi Outfitters also runs a full service fly shop. They carry many brands and even ship online to customers. They offer deals on shipping and even free trips on a guided tour. They operate a blog called Liars Club Blog where they share information on fly fishing and other relevant information on fishing.

One of the major beauties of the Unicoi experience is the Chattahoochee River. Harris explains his thoughts on this by saying, "The headwaters of the Chattahoochee River were vital to the life of Native Americans. The first road for European settlers paralleled the river over the mountain through what today is known as Unicoi Gap. The river withstood unimaginable abuse when settlers began clear cutting the mountains for timber and, even worse, mined the area for gold." Eventually, the abuse was ended when people realized the importance of the river. It is the life source for the region. Now, it exists as a pristine, flowing river for all to enjoy. Many anglers return time and time again to the Chattahoochee River.

The Unicoi Outfitters make trips to many parts of the river on private areas used solely for raising trophy trout and other fish. They see anglers who return to the same bends of the river to visit favorite locations while others choose to venture out to many different areas to get a wider view of the beauty of northern Georgia.

In any case, Unicoi continues to lead all manner of people throughout the area. Through teaching, guiding, and spending time in the great outdoors, Unicoi Outfitters offers professional services and know-how for all their old and new friends that come along.

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About The Author

Elisha Neubauer is a freelance editor, ghostwriter, book reviewer, and author. She is...

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