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Smallmouth Bass in the Piedmont of NC ???

Saturday, August 14, 2021

Smallmouth Bass in the Piedmont of NC ???

    Smallmouth Bass In Central North Carolina?

 Are there Smallmouth bass in Eastern North Carolina?   No.   But, there are Smallmouth bass in Central North Carolina in the Uwharrie Mountains of NC.  These are the most Eastern Smallmouth bass found in NC and they are isolated from other populations.    The Uwharrie Mountains are the Oldest mountain range in North America once rising over 20,000 feet tall the tallest one now is just over 1,100 feet tall.  Time and erosion have taken a toll on this once huge mountain range. 

These Smallmouth bass are in the Uwharrie and Little Rivers which both flow  through what is known to the locals as the Uwharries.    The Closest next smallie population is in the Yadkin River some 60 plus miles north west  of these.  To the North  the next known population is in  the Dan River some 90 miles  distant.   To the west the next known population is in the Catawba/Johns River area  90 plus miles away and to the south some 90~ miles in the Broad River Drainage.   

Are these Smallmouth bass native to these 2 rivers?  No.   Sometime in the early 70's the NCWRC stocked Barnes and Cedar Creeks with Smallmouth bass.  These 2 creeks feed the Uwharrie River.  The Biologist at the Wildlife commission thought the cooler water of these 2 creeks could host a population of smallies which they did thrive in.  The commission never thought They would live in the Uwharrie River.   They were wrong.   They entered the Uwharrie out of these 2 creeks and the rest is history. 

How did they get in the Little River?   Rumor has it that they were stocked by drivers of the stocker trucks. I spoke with a biologist and he told me back in the day that it wasn't uncommon for the commission to stock a river with fish and if the drivers knew another nearby river they thought would be cool to have that fish as well they would just save a few and on the way back do their own stocking. 

No matter how they got there the Little River has a very nice population of Smallmouth bass.  Both rivers have nice Populations of Roanoke bass as well and it is probably certain they got stocked in the same way. 


Lets talk about the rivers 

The Uwharrie River - 

The Uwharrie starts Just South of High Point NC and makes  it way south 61 miles to and through parts of the Uwharrie National Forest before dumping into the Yadkin River at Lake Tillery.   The Yadkin is known as the Pee Dee River below this.  There is only one Dam on this river which is Asheboro's water supply Lake Reese.   All of the good smallie water is downstream of this dam. 

From where it dumps into Tillery up to Randolph Co Sr1314 is 33 miles and averages 85' in width.  From Burney Mill Rd down to Low Water bridge Rd down to Hwy 109 are the best stretches for Smallmouth bass and most of this is in the Uwharrie National forest .  There also is a good white bass run out of Tillery in the spring and they can be caught best in the lower 2 miles .  There is a new NCWRC access on the Uwharrie for carry boats 1 mile above Tillery and it can be accessed off of Dennis rd.  This is the back water of Tillery but you can go up and catch white bass.   Forest service rd 555 is also a good rd to access for white bass and Smallies 

From SR1314 to the NC 62 Bridge is 24 miles and this stretch averages 40'.  This section has really good Redbreast fishing.  The 4 miles of river above Hwy 62 it too small for fishing.

This is my best smallmouth bass out of the Uwharrie going 4 lbs caught on a Chartreuse Strike King Mini Buzz. 

Here is a Uwharrie River Roanoke Bass 


The Little River - 

The Little starts in the city limits of Asheboro, NC and makes it way south dumping into the Pee Dee River at the upper end of Blewett Falls Lake. It is 55 miles long from its origin to the Pee Dee and there are only 2 dams in this river as several have been removed. 

From the Pee Dee Up 5 miles the Little  to NC 73 is 5 Miles.  Avg width 175'   A survey done back around 1970 or so has 1.06 fish per hour    77 % sunfish 9% catfish 7% crappie 4% largemouth and 3% Pickerel.  Also there is a White bass run in this section in the Spring. 

The section from NC 73 Bridge  to SR 1119 in Randolph co is 37 miles and it averages 68' wide in this stretch.    Eurie Lake is in this stretch at River mile 10.5 .  On some maps it is Eure Lake.  This lake is roughly 1.5 miles long and 30 acres.  You can access this millpond Off of Chip Rd and then onto Green Oak Gap rd.   The access here is private but you can fish by putting 3$ in a pay box.   You can fish the lake or paddle up an  reach the flowing river but remember the banks maybe Private .    Just 2 miles up from the upper end of Eurie Lake is Hurleys lake.  This millpond is roughly 35 acres and 2.5 miles long.  Some maps have it as Brunton Mill Pond  This millpond can be accessed at the NCWRC public boat ramp off of SR 1005 (Pekin Rd) and a lot of the banks on this stretch is the Uwharrie National Forest.

From SR 1119 to the Little's origin is 13 miles.   The avg width is 36'  and this reach provides some good redbreast fishing. 

I Have caught Smallmouth bass in all 3 sections of this river but I usually catch more above SR 1005 up to Okeewemee Rd. 

The Little as seen below is IMHO one of the prettiest rivers in North Carolina. 


Both of these rivers can be accessed by either wading or canoeing/kayaking.  For a good read and listing of all access points on Both of these rivers a must have is  The Book PADDLING EASTERN NORTH CAROLINA   with Paul Ferguson.  You can get this on Amazon here at  https://amzn.to/2Uh8M2L   

Another must read is TAR HEEL ANGLER Freshwater Fishing in North Carolina by Buck Paysour.  Chapter 17 is mainly about fishing the Little River.  You can get this on Amazon as well here https://amzn.to/3m4Yvm2

Here are 3 videos on trips I have made to these Rivers.

This trip I did not catch any Smallmouth Bass but you can see the Beauty and Variety found here

Here is one where I caught some Smallmouth bass and Largemouth.

Thanks for watching and reading, Mack

"smallmouth bass in North Carolina"

Thursday, June 24, 2021

Catfish Noodling: Grabbing Flatheads to Save Them from a Dried up River !!!

Location - North Carolina

Today I went to a favorite river of mine to catch Flatheads on rod and reel and was surprised to see the water below the dam I fish almost DRY!!!! 
They are working on the dam so the water is being all diverted into a canal which empties into the river 3/4 mile below the dam thus leaving alot of that stretch dry. 
I spotted 2 young men Noodling them and then I started doing the same.   Then a young lady named Rebecca came along and said she saw several in different hole so she became my spotter and camera woman.   Thanks to Davey, Jojo and Rebecca. 


Sunday, June 6, 2021

#1 Lure for River Bass ?? Best Lures for River Bass

Check out my new video on the Lures I use for River bass here in the Southeast.  

Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Chattahoochee River SkipJack Fishing w Bobby Garland Baby Shad's

04.04.21   Columbus, Georgia
Water Flow aprox 14000 CFM

Today I fished for Skippies or Skipjack Herring in the Chattahoochee River on the Columbus Riverwalk.   I actually had caught my first one the day before getting this species off of my bucket list.    These fish are very very close cousins to the Hickory Shad on East Coast Rivers and they are caught with the same tactics.  
A very fun fish to catch !!!

Hope you enjoy and hit the subscribe button!!!
Thanks, Mack

Get your Glo Shad here- https://amzn.to/3i4U1cC

See My Video


Friday, March 12, 2021

Thursday, November 26, 2020

Hiking, Exploring, and Fishing Carter's Falls

October 2020 We explored Carter's Falls which is just outside of Elkin, NC .   This is a awesome place with some really nice waterfalls on Big Elkin Creek.    Enjoy the video, Mack