I'll admit it. I mostly stopped at the Linville River to look at the falls, with thought that I might hike down into the gorge to fish a bit just below the falls. The river was pushy from recent afternoon storms, so I wasn't convinced I could get around enough or that it would be worth hiking down into the gorge.
So I checked out the falls from a couple of vantages and was on my way toward the next stop when I noticed a little spot with easy access to hatchery supported waters and thought I might be able to fool a stocker rainbow or two. Sure enough in the second spot I cast to from the bank I had one on for a moment. That convinced me to grab my waders and hit it a little harder.
I basically fished through one big bend for a half hour or so and had missed three rainbows and was coming up on a spot where I planned to get out when something hit my Rebel Tracdown Minnow hard. After a couple of minutes I got a glimpse, and several tense minutes later I managed to land a beautiful brown trout. It was just me there so pictures are limited to a few bad close ups and a self-timer shot, but I'm thankful to have gotten those.
After taking a few photos, I measured the trout against my rod, let it go in good condition and stepped out of the stream to continue in my travels.
My kind if side trip!