Blue Stream Fly Fishing
Fly Fishing Report for:

Cranberry River - Richwood - West Virginia

Hatch Chart - Best Access/Spots - Local Fish - About

Water Flow Chart

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Using Water Flow Charts & Weather Reports: Begin with our water flow charts to grasp stream velocity and volume – look for stable or rising trends to pinpoint ideal fishing times. Learn to interpret sudden spikes or drops, which can indicate potential challenges. Next, consult our weather reports to understand ambient conditions. Pairing the two, you can anticipate fish behavior, choose the right gear, and select the best fishing spots. Use these tools together for a holistic approach to your next fishing adventure.

In-Depth Weather

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Directions To Location

Hatch Chart

Month Hatch Time of Day Recommended Fly Sizes Popular Fly Patterns
January Midges Warmest part of day #20-26 Griffith's Gnat, Zebra Midge
Winter Stoneflies Midday #16-20 Black Stonefly Nymph, Adult patterns
February Midges Warmest part of day #20-26 Griffith's Gnat, Zebra Midge
Winter Stoneflies Midday #16-20 Black Stonefly Nymph, Adult patterns
March Blue-Winged Olives Afternoon #18-22 BWO Emerger, BWO Dry
Little Black Caddis Late afternoon #18-20 Elk Hair Caddis, Pupa patterns
Quill Gordons Midday #12-14 Quill Gordon Dry
April Blue-Winged Olives Afternoon #16-20 BWO Emerger, BWO Dry
Hendricksons Late afternoon #12-14 Hendrickson Dry, Emerger
Grannom Caddis Afternoon #14-16 Grannom Pupa, Elk Hair Caddis
March Browns Late afternoon #10-12 March Brown Dry, Emerger
May March Browns Late afternoon #10-12 March Brown Dry, Emerger
Sulphurs Evening #14-18 Sulphur Dun, Emerger
Gray Fox Afternoon #12-14 Gray Fox Dry
Green Drakes Evening #8-10 Green Drake Dry, Emerger
June Light Cahills Late afternoon #12-14 Light Cahill Dry, Emerger
Isonychia Evening #10-12 Isonychia Nymph, Dry patterns
Yellow Drakes Evening #10-12 Yellow Drake Dry
Golden Stoneflies Evening #8-10 Golden Stonefly Nymph, Dry patterns
July Terrestrials All day #10-16 Ants, Beetles, Hoppers
Little Yellow Stoneflies Evening #14-16 Yellow Sally Dry
August Terrestrials All day #10-16 Ants, Beetles, Hoppers
Tricos Morning #20-24 Trico Spinner, Dun
September Terrestrials All day #10-16 Ants, Beetles, Hoppers
Blue-Winged Olives Afternoon #18-22 BWO Emerger, BWO Dry
October Blue-Winged Olives Afternoon #18-22 BWO Emerger, BWO Dry
October Caddis Late afternoon #8-10 October Caddis Pupa, Dry patterns
November Blue-Winged Olives Cloudy days, afternoon #18-22 BWO Emerger, BWO Dry
December Midges Warmest part of day #20-26 Griffith's Gnat, Zebra Midge
Winter Stoneflies Midday #16-20 Black Stonefly Nymph, Adult patterns

While we strive to ensure the precision of our hatch charts, some reflect broader river region insights. Through ongoing partnerships with local guides and fly shops, we’re committed to refining our data. Should you notice any inconsistencies or have feedback, we welcome you to reach out. 

Best Fishing Spots

The Cranberry River in Richwood is renowned for being a haven for fly fishers, thanks to its rich aquatic biodiversity. Among the best spots to fly fish are:

  • The North South Trailhead: Known for its clear waters and abundant trout population.
  • Williams River Campground: An ideal spot for catching brook trout amidst serenity.
  • Kennison Mountain Trail: A popular spot for fly fishers, largely due to the densely populated rainbow and brown trout.
  • South Fork Cranberry River Campground: A tranquil fishing spot, infamously populated with large brown trout and a variety of other freshwater fish species.
  • Big Rock Campground: Offering plenty of shade for a comfortable fishing experience, Big Rock is perfect for catching brook trout.

It’s essential to follow all regulations to maintain the natural beauty of these locations and ensure the thriving fish population continue to flourish.

Best Access Points

In Richwood, the Cranberry River provides some excellent points for fly fishing. Access points and their notable features are as follows:

  • Hills Creek: Located towards the headwaters of the Cranberry River, this stream junction can be reached via a trail. Ideal for those targeting brook trout.
  • The Forks: The intersection of the North and South branches is a sought-after spot often teeming with trout due to its abundant water supply.
  • Woodbine Recreation Area: Access to the Cranberry River is easy here with ample parking and a stocking location as well.
  • Camp Splinter: Near the lower part of the river, this area offers deep pools and runs – perfect for larger trout!
  • Kennison Run: Access to this smaller branch provides a quieter, more secluded fly fishing experience.

These locations offer the best opportunity for a successful fishing trip on the Cranberry River in Richwood.

Local Fish

  • Brook Trout: Known for their striking color on the Cranberry River, they are a popular target for fly fishers.
  • Brown Trout: These species provide a great challenge for anglers due to their elusive nature.
  • Rainbow Trout: They are abundant in this river and are known to put up a good fight.
  • Smallmouth Bass: Known for their aggressive strikes, it’s a favorite among seasoned fly fishers.
  • Largemouth Bass: This species thrives in the calmer sections of the river and are a blast to catch on a fly.
  • Channel Catfish: Perfect for fly fishermen willing to step up to a heavier rod and line.
  • Redear Sunfish: These fish make for great sport on a light fly rod and are abundant in the river.
  • Bluegill: Best for beginners in fly fishing as they are pretty easy to catch.

About The River

The Cranberry River is a charming locale nestled near Richwood, West Virginia. Its roots trace back to the time when Native Americans thrived across the land. They utilized the river’s resources, making it an integral part of their survival.

As the years rolled by, the river gained prominence for its abundant trout, attracting angling enthusiasts worldwide. Let’s dive into some intriguing facts about this aquatic treasure:

  • Stretching about 24 miles long, the Cranberry River is part of the Gauley River watershed, itself a tributary of the mighty Kanawha River.
  • It’s surrounded by the phenomenal Cranberry Wilderness, the largest U.S. wilderness area in the eastern US.
  • The river became a habitat restoration success story in the 20th century when toxic acid drainage from mining operations was mitigated, revitalizing its depleted trout populations.

Today, the Cranberry River continues to offer majestic views and memorable fishing adventures for all to enjoy.

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