North Carolina anglers have a new place to wet a line thanks to the opening of a new public access area in Watauga County on the South Fork New River. The area, dubbed Pine Run Public Fishing Area, came about through an effort between the NCWRC and High Country Pathways, a non-profit group that finds ways to make these type of properties a reality.

The fishing locale is about 5 miles east of Boone, and its location makes it ideal for bank fishing or as a launch or takeout point for small boat anglers. With other access points nearby, it can help anglers make short floats or long floats possible.

Smallmouth bass, redbreast bream, rock bass, and wild brown trout are among the species anglers can expect to catch here. Other trout are stocked during certain seasons, so anglers can also hook brook, brown, and rainbow trout at different times throughout the year. 

While this stretch of the river is not appropriate for powered watercraft, it is great for bank fishing, wading, or using kayaks and canoes. It is a fairly shallow and rocky area, and it features a small, paved parking area with steps that lead from the parking lot to the river.

Kin Hodges, a district biologist with NCWRC said the site could not have happened without coordination between the Commision and High Country Pathways. “This project is a great example of the types of partnerships the Commission seeks out to advance its goals of improving public access to waterways across the state,” Hodges said. “High Country Pathways had secured grant funding to go toward the development of access points along the New River in Watauga County. By the Commission assisting with the development of the Pine Run site, High Country Pathways was able to stretch its funding further and develop an additional river access point at Green Valley Park.”