Next to the James, no other river in Virginia is dearer to the smallmouth angler’s heart than the Shenandoah. Valley residents have long believed that the river’s name means “daughter of the stars”—and the romantic moniker is certainly fitting, even if this water has seen more than its share of floods, droughts, bloody Civil War battles, and, more recently, a major fish kill in 2005, similar to that on the North Fork in 2004, and the mainstream Shenandoah in December 2006. Jointly studying the fish kill are the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries and the Department of Environmental Quality.
They estimate that perhaps 80 percent of the adult smallmouth bass population was destroyed during this kill, the causes of which remain a mystery. Types of Fish: By and large, anglers are chasing smallies when they fish the Shenandoah. The South Fork of the Shenandoah also has a healthy population of sunfish, carp, and even crappie. This fly-fishing chapter describes the "where, when, and how" for fishing in this area. It includes a full-page map and information on the known hatches, suggested equipment to use, the best flies to use, season, limits, nearby accommodations, and camping.
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