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Fishing Hiwassee Lake

AKA: Hiwassee Reservoir, Lake Hiwassee

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By AA-Fishing Staff Writers

Hiwassee Lake, NC

Popular Fish Species Hiwassee Lake, NC

Hiwassee Lake Popular Fish - Striped Bass

Striped Bass Fishing

As the home to the current state record striper (over 65 pounds), striped bass are a favorite of many locals and fishing guides at Hiwassee Lake. In Spring and Fall work the upper end of the lake where water is flowing into the lake. Look for deeper water in the river channel, as a holding place for stripers. In Summer and Winter, stripers hang out in deeper water during the day Morning often draws the stripers to much shallower water, look for them from the surface down to around the 20-foot range as they feed on shallow-running schools of bait. The lake is filled with plenty of baitfish and sunfish to to keep the fishery thriving. Being successful at fishing for stripers is a matter of locating schools of bait, and the wolf packs of stripers which are likely to be nearby. Fish finders, and forward facing sonar, are a big help in locating these roaming schools. Live bait is very effective here, and stripers can be caught year round.

Hiwassee Lake Popular Fish - Largemouth Bass

Largemouth Bass Fishing

Hiwassee Lake offers good fishing for largemouth bass. Recently, the fishing for bass has continued to impress. Some big bass roam Hiwassee Lake, thanks to excellent fisheries management by the NC Wildlife Resources Commission, as well as the availability of extensive cover for both baitfish and bass. When the bite is good, bass typically move shallow and are quite aggressive. If you find them shallow and they are not tempted to bite, slow down and use smaller, lighter baits. Fishing for largemouth bass is good virtually any time they are shallow - in spring, mornings in summer, and during warm Fall afternoons. Use shallow crankbaits around rip rap. Around grass use worms, jigs, topwater and spinnerbaits. In deeper water, big worms, jigs and spoons are three good weapons. In winter, spend your time fishing Hiwassee Lake on deeper structure where the bass spend much of their time. Smallmouth bass and spotted bass also reside here in good numbers.

Hiwassee Lake Popular Fish - Walleye

Walleye Fishing

Thanks to good fisheries management, a healthy population of walleye are thriving in the waters of Hiwassee Lake this year. May and June tend to be the best time for weekend anglers to catch them. During this time they tend to move shallower and closer to shore. Other times of the year they are more likely to roam around in deeper water. As always, staying close by schools of baitfish. They are eager to feed throughout the lake, but tend to concentrate around structure on points, flats and ledges off the river channels. A proven method for catching walleye here is trolling with spinners tipped with live bait, or trolling with long-billed, deep diving crankbaits. However casting live bait, jigs, worms and spoons also works well at times.

Fish species to fish for...

Guide to fishing for largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, spotted bass, channel catfish, black crappie, walleye, bluegill, white bass, yellow perch and striped bass at Hiwassee Lake in North Carolina.

Hiwassee Lake Fishing Video

Lake Video

Home of the state record for both smallmouth bass and striped bass, Hiwassee Reservoir is a 6,200-acre lake in the southwest corner of the state. There is 180 miles of shoreline to explore while searching for the bass, catfish, crappie, walleye, sunfish and striped bass which reside in this 200 feet-deep reservoir. Whether fishing from a fancy bass boat, a canoe, a kayak or any other watercraft, you'll find plenty of area for fishing. The lake is also quite friendly to anglers preferring shoreline fishing. Three marinas serve the boating public with full marina services, including boat rentals. Campgrounds with RV spaces are conveniently located nearby the lake.

Hiwassee Lake, located in North Carolina, is a picturesque destination known for its excellent fishing opportunities and scenic beauty. The lake is nestled amidst the Nantahala National Forest, providing anglers with a serene and peaceful environment to enjoy their fishing adventures.

One of the popular species found in Hiwassee Lake is the smallmouth bass. Anglers are drawn to the lake for the chance to catch these feisty and hard-fighting fish. Smallmouth bass can be found in rocky areas, submerged logs, and near the lake's shoreline. Anglers often use various techniques such as casting crankbaits, jigs, and soft plastics to entice these aggressive bass. The clear waters of Hiwassee Lake make it an ideal spot for targeting smallmouth bass.

In addition to smallmouth bass, Hiwassee Lake is home to other sought-after species. Largemouth bass can be found in the lake's weedy areas and around structure, offering anglers an additional angling opportunity. Crappie, catfish, and sunfish are also plentiful, providing a diverse range of fishing options for anglers of all skill levels. Whether you prefer casting for bass or dropping a line for crappie, Hiwassee Lake offers something for every angler.

Fishing Boats For Rent In North Carolina

Primary fish species residing in Hiwassee Lake

Click images for fishing tips and details about each species.

Largemouth bass Smallmouth bass Spotted bass Channel catfish Black crappie Walleye Bluegill White Bass Yellow Perch Striped bass

Hiwassee Lake Amenities

Marina: YES
Boat Rental: YES
Boat Launch Ramp: YES
Campgrounds: YES
RV Hookups: YES
Lodging: NEARBY
Convenience Store: YES
Bait & Tackle: YES
Restaurant: NEARBY

Today's Weather & Forecast

Boating is a popular activity on Hiwassee Lake, allowing anglers and recreational enthusiasts to explore the vast expanse of water. Boaters can take advantage of the boat ramps and marinas available for convenient access to the lake. Whether you're cruising in a motorized boat, paddling in a kayak, or enjoying a peaceful day of canoeing, Hiwassee Lake offers plenty of space and opportunities for boating.

Fishing Boat Rentals

Dukes Hideaway Marina
Rentals: Pontoon boats
828 835-3332

Harbor Cove Marina
Rentals: Pontoons, kayaks and paddleboards
828 644-5253

Mountain View Marina
Rentals: Kayaks and pontoon boats
828 644-5451

Shooks Marina
Rentals: Fishing boats, kayaks and pontoon boats
828 837-2863


Dukes Hideaway Marina
555 Duke Lodge Rd
Murphy, NC 28906
828 835-3332

Harbor Cove Marina
400 Harbor Cove Ln
Murphy, NC 28906
828 644-5253

Mountain View Marina
200 Dean Aldrich Dr
Murphy, NC 28906
828 644-5451

Shooks Marina
11003 Joe Brown Hwy
Murphy, NC 28906
828 837-2863

Public Boat Launch Ramps & Landings

2070 National Forest Boating Access
This is a primitive boat launch ramp with limited parking.

Hanging Dog Boat Ramp
This two-lane boat ramp has a dock and unimproved parking.

Hiwassee - Mickens Boat Ramp
Plenty of paved parking and a boat dock enhance this two-lane launch ramp. It is located at the southern end of Michen Branch road in the northwest sector of the lake.

Ramsey Bluff Boating Access
This is a primitive boat launch ramp with limited parking.

Fishing Guides On Hiwassee Lake

Big Ol' Fish Professional Guide Services - striped bass

If you offer fishing guide services on this lake, please contact us for a free listing, to be posted here.

Fishing License

Click here for a North Carolina Fishing License.

Camping facilities near Hiwassee Lake provide a chance to extend your fishing trip and immerse yourself in the natural beauty of the area. Campgrounds and RV parks in the surrounding vicinity offer amenities for overnight stays, allowing anglers to relax and enjoy the tranquility of the lake. Camping near Hiwassee Lake provides the perfect opportunity to wake up to the sounds of nature, fish from the shore, and make lasting memories.

Campgrounds & RV Parks Nearby

Crawford's Campground - 828 837-9077

Murphy - Peace Valley KOA Campground - 828 837-6223

Hiwassee Lake NC Map - Fishing & Camping Areas

Contact Information

Hiwassee Lake
Shooks Marina & Boat Rentals
11003 Joe Brown Hwy
Murphy, NC 28906
828 837-2863


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Hiwassee Lake in North Carolina.

Smallmouth bass and striped bass fishing in southwest NC.

Fishing at Hiwassee Lake, in North Carolina.