The Tuckaseegee River is famous on its own as a fishing destination in western North Carolina, but often overlooked are four small impoundments on the East Fork of the river, the "Four Remote Gems" – Wolf Creek Lake, Tanasee Creek Lake, Bear Creek Lake and Cedar Cliff Lake.

Ronnie Parris of Smoky Mountain Outdoors Unlimited said that cooling water temperatures on the small lakes – as well as larger ones like Fontana, Glenville, Santeetlah, Hiwassee and Chatuge – will bring fish that have been relegated to deep water for months will move up on the shoreline to feed.

"It's pretty easy fishing for a lot of species," said Parris (828-736-9471). "We have both largemouth and smallmouth bass, rainbow trout, walleye, bluegill, and some crappie and catching any of these fish is just a matter of working your way down the shoreline casting to the bank."

Being a live bait specialist, Parris said it's hard to beat presenting live minnows, night crawlers, or crickets around any of the blow downs and rock points that are prominent throughout these western lakes and not catch a fish.

The "Four Remote Gems" get special attention from Parris. Ranging in size from Wolf Creek at 49 acres and Bear Creek at 476 acres, they were created by Nantahala Power and Light during the Korean War ea and are now owned and operated by Duke Power.

Three of the four lakes are managed by the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission as hatchery-supported trout fisheries. In addition, Bear Creek has earned a reputation for its sunfish populations, particularly largemouth bass and bluegill. In the attached video, join Ronnie Parris as he takes in the scenery along with some nice bluegill and a few other species.