This past weekend I had the opportunity to travel up to Harrisonburg, Virginia, and fish through a portion of the North River. The section of the river that we were camped out on was a fairly shallow spot, some small rapids, but also included a small creek and water fall flowing right into it. This kept all parts of the river moving at a fairly quick pace, with few areas of calm and smooth surface water.
From what we had heard prior to trying out the waters, small mouth bass was what most people were catching in that area, and an occasional trout if you tried going up the smaller creek that was flowing into it. So with that in mind, we used spinning bait, fake crawdads, and small artificial minnows to see what we could get. The whole time consisted of fishing off the banks edge, though kayaks would have been great to get to deeper and possibly more populated areas for the bass we wanted. With the stream pulling the line constantly, and thick grass located in the middle of the water, reeling it in fairly quick was necessary in order to not get your hook tangled in anything.
First we caught multiple small mouth bass. Nothing over a foot long, though still enjoyed reeling them in compared to something like a tiny perch. Most all of the small mouth were on the opposite bank, directly in the path of where the small waterfalls were pouring in, I’m assuming under rocks that were blocking the rushing waters. They hit anything we caste towards that area, but they really went for the fake crawdads for the most part.
A friend of mine caught a decent sized croaker or possibly redhorse fish, though I was not able to see where he snagged it. This was what I had caught many times before at the Maury River, just south in Lexington Virginia weeks prior. Though there was no sign of trout, and that could be because we did not try hiking up the creek where they were said to be located.
One of the better catches of the day was caught under a large fallen tree right near our camp spot. It was hard to tell if it was a young large mouth bass, or so we believe it to be, though it was the heaviest fish we reeled in. It hit the fake minnow bait that included two treble hooks attached to the front and back, and was almost instant as it hit the water.
With catching around a dozen decent fish overall that day, I would recommend to anyone try fishing the North River, and there are plenty of places to stay right on the banks overnight if you wanted to keep going for a couple of days. With fall, a great fishing season starting up, this is the best time to get to it!