Professional fisher or novice hopeful: This is the best fishing in this area

Fishing at the Smith River. (Photo credit: Smith River Outfitters)
Fishing at the Smith River. (Photo credit: Smith River Outfitters) (Smith River Outfitters)

If you’re an avid fisher, you probably already have a good idea of some of the best spots in the state that are within a day’s drive from you, but they may all pale in comparison to the Smith River in Martinsville-Henry County.

The best part is, it doesn’t matter what your fishing style is — the river’s character is constantly changing, so it lends itself to any fisher, no matter your style.

Since the river is fed by Philpott Lake, the water is cool and active, which means you’ll find native brown trout. Farther down the river, as the temperatures warm up, you can cast a line and find small mouth and redbreasts.

Fishing at Smith River. (Smith River Outfitters)

Plus, as part of a put-and-take program, the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries stock portions of the 44.5-mile river with rainbow trout.

With 10 public river access points, it makes finding a spot where you can comfortably cast a line pretty easy.

If you want to actually get on the river, Smith River Outfitters can provide a boat, shuttle service and a guided tour. Whatever the experience is you’re looking for, they can make it happen.

“Our mission is simple: to share our love of the river with you and help you experience a fun and relaxing trip while learning to love our home waters as much as we do,” the Outfitter website states.