In the Greenbrier Valley, there are countless stretches of the Greenbrier and Meadow rivers, their cool-water tributaries and even a 164-acre lake that deliver a great day on the water. With brown, rainbow and brook trout, smallmouth and largemouth bass, muskie, catfish and carp, a big variety of promising options await.
Although you'll undoubtedly find your own favorite fishing holes, here are some general guidelines for a good head start.
Second Creek on the Greenbrier-Monroe county-line is designated Special Regulation Waters for fly-fishing only. With an expected annual April stocking, spring promises good returns. The insect hatch has begun, so be sure to have flies in your box for which trout already find tasty. The rocky, gravel bottom makes for easy wading to thoroughly work the banks and deeper holes. If you’re a guest at The Greenbrier, you also have fly-fishing access along the 3 miles of Howard's Creek that meanders through the resort property.
Upstream of The Greenbrier, the DNR is now stocking rainbow trout in Howard's Creek with monthly releases January through April. The city of White Sulphur Springs has provided creekside benches at the Big Draft Bridge as well as along the walking trail that connects to Brad Paisley Community Park.
Trout are found in the creeks that empty into the Greenbrier and Meadow rivers. Anthony Creek, north of Lewisburg in the Monongahela National Forest, has clear water, long runs, numerous blue-green holes and offers the advantage of being stocked in the spring and fall.
Big Clear Creek, near Rupert, parallels Anjean Road, making stocked sections and deep holes super accessible. The terrain is rocky with steep banks so be prepared to work for your “dinner” mentions local resident, Jack Fox. “You might even need to be part mountain goat!” It's regularly stocked in the spring with two additional October releases. Hungry for a good meal, these trout have proven easily lured by artificial bait, spinners and live minnows.
While trout can occasionally be taken in the cooler stretches of the Greenbrier River, smallmouth bass is the usual objective. The river is readily accessed from many points along the Greenbrier River Trail. Four sections with put-ins are also popular for half-day or full-day float-fishing trips: Anthony to Caldwell, Caldwell to Ronceverte, Ronceverte to Fort Spring, and Fort Spring to Alderson. Quiet stretches alternate with easy Class I and II rapids. Catfish and carp can be found in some of the deeper holes in more remote sections.
Largemouth bass, the most popular sport-fish in America, populate Lake Sherwood, in the Monongahela National Forest, about 18 miles north of White Sulphur Springs. For those who want to make an expedition of it, the lake offers boat rentals and swimming along with picnic and camping facilities.
Get in on the WV Gold Rush! During the month of April each year, more than 61 lakes, streams and rivers across West Virginia are stocked with 50,000 golden rainbow trout. In Greenbrier County, that includes Tuckahoe and Summit lakes. Although easy to identify, these prized fish can be quite elusive and caught well beyond the official trout-stocking week. Reel one in that includes a gold tag, and you’ve just won an exclusive Gold Rush t-shirt. Click HERE to request your tee.
The Mountain State is a freshwater angler's paradise, blessed with innumerable waterways. Use the resources below to get the most out of your fishing adventure to the Greenbrier Valley.
Serenity Now Outfitters - Guided half and full-day fly-fishing trips (wade fishing and float) are available at Serenity Now Outfitters, in downtown Lewisburg. Whether it’s trout, smallmouth bass or the elusive Musky, owner, Craig Miller knows exactly where to go to maximize your time catching with less time fishing. If you’re just looking for advice or a critical piece of gear, Craig can assist with that, too. He is a wealth of knowledge and enjoys sharing his insight on the area’s fishing opportunities.
Outdoor Adventures - Those in pursuit of the popular freshwater game fish, the smallmouth bass, Tracy Asbury and his team offer guided float fishing trips in the form of half, full and two-day excursions on the Greenbrier River. Their guides are adept in the art of spin fishing, fly fishing and wade-style fishing so whatever the season, your chances in landing the “big one” go up exponentially.
Otters Guide Service - Take if from Jacob, owner and lead guide…stellar fisheries abound in the region. His team of local fishing experts has the know-how to land anything that chases a fly…and give you the pointers to get on the action, too! Take your pick from trout, smallmouth bass and musky fly fishing trips. Half and full-day outings.
WV FISHING LICENSE. Fishing in West Virginia requires a state license. Click HERE for information.
03.24.20 UPDATE. The WV Division of Natural resources has stopped announcing locations for daily trout stockings to protect staff and limit anglers gathering in public spaces. With that said, regular trout stockings are continuing as set forth in the 2020 Fishing Regulations.
For a map of West Virginia and the streams that are stocked, click HERE.
White Sulphur Spring National Fish Hatchery. For a deeper understanding of our freshwater natural resources, the White Sulphur Springs National Fish Hatchery has been in operation for over 100 years. Located on Route 60, just east of White Sulphur Springs, the hatchery is one of three primary broodstock stations in the country that specialize in rainbow trout. They ship over 8 million eggs annually to 13 states. They also raise freshwater mussels to help maintain water quality in streams and rivers.
General guidelines and local knowledge insight courtesy of Bill Turner. Photos courtesy of Outdoor Adventures, Otters Guide Service and Serenity Now Outfitters.