In the past three decades I’ve fly fished all across North America – Alaska, New Brunswick, Caribbean flats, the Great Lakes, the Rockies, the Everglades, the Northwest and dozens of points in between. The day on the water with Reece was a top 10 experience. The fishing wasn’t easy, quite the contrary and the weather nasty – one of those bitter and wet late-winter days that make you wonder if you should have stayed home beside a warm fire. But it was oh so satisfying to hook and land a wild rainbow that was, as Reece, exclaimed, “A two-foot fish.” That was the biggest fish of the day with a trio of others just a bit shy of the two-foot mark. Reece’s knowledge of the water, the flies that fit the conditions and his patience with an angler not used to smaller streams ensured success. I recommend him without reservation and look forward to going back to North Georgia soon.
Those of us who love fly fishing come in all shapes, sizes and skill levels. While the sport – or is it an art? – is a passion of mine, I fish less often than I like, with too much time between trips. While an occasional trip to Oregon, Montana or Colorado is wonderful, you don’t have to go to the expense and time commitment to go west to fish first-class waters with talented and experienced guides.
The waters of the Blue Ridge, Ga., area are terrific, with a variety of choices of leisurely floats to more technical small creeks, as well as private waters with trophy trout. In fact, fishermen from the west are making their way to northwest Georgia for their own fantastic experience in Blue Ridge.
You’d be wise to book a trip with Reece Panter, of Appalachian Anglers. Many guides know how to fish but Reese has a special gift. No matter your skill level, he will make sure you have a great experience. He knows the water, where the fish lie and what fly offers the best chance for success. He’s also skilled at handling a drift boat, positioning you perfectly for the best opportunity to catch fish. Better still, he’s just fun to fish with. I highly recommend him!
I will start by saying that Reece is an outdoorsman. If the subject is a game animal or fish, Reece can shed some light onto the subject with first-hand experience and professionalism. I have fished with Reece for nearly 8 years now, and have known him and his family for much longer. His dedicated knowledge of the local fisheries is unmatched. There isn’t a stream in the county that Reece hasn’t cast a fly at. His first-hand knowledge of the fisheries is enough to constantly put clients on fish- and not just the low hanging fruit of juvenile stocker trout. If you’re looking for the Instagram- guide, you’re in the wrong boat. Reece photo documents his fish, but is far from the trendy “#prostaff” guide. You’ll enter the boat and know that you’re dealing with a professional that specializes in fishing- not looking pretty or being “hip”. Reece is full blood Appalachian American- and he’s as local as a native trout.
His knowledge of the public water is a winning lottery ticket if you’re looking for a chance at big tailwater trout. He won’t brag, but do your research on the river and the guides that make their living on North Georgia waters- find me a guide who constantly catches large PUBLIC water fish more than Reece and the team at Appalachian Anglers. I’ve not had better public or private water trips with any guide- East or West Coast.
Reece offers something that many guides do not- and that is steady attention to detail and improvement. For the experienced angler, Reece is a guide that can recognize your fishing style and use that to advantage. He will change flies, adjust depth, and maintain patience throughout the trip in order to work for you all day in catching fish. I’m a seasoned fly angler and Reece will not hesitate to tell me when I’m being soft on my hooksets or being lazy with my casts. He is able to quickly dissect your rig, cast, and line management when needed, and instruct you in ways that are clear and concise. You will leave the water a better fisherman- and that is truly what is worth the investment of a guided trip with Reece.
Humble, Professional and Personable are the three words that come to mind.