Cataloochee Trout

Palmer Creek

The main stream of Palmer Fork sports a mixture of rainbow and brook trout upstream from an elevation of 3,000 feet. Downstream from that point, it holds rainbow trout and an occasional wayward brown. Palmer Creek offers anglers very good trout fishing on a number of very beautiful and productive feeder streams; Rough Fork, Pretty Hollow Creek, Lost Bottom Creek, Beech Creek, and Falling Rock Creek all hold populations of brightly-hued speckle trout. Each has its own little tributary system that can be a delight to explore.

Size: Medium
Fishing Pressure: Moderate to light
Fishing Quality: Very good to excellent
Access: Palmer Creek Trail
Usgs Quads: Bunches Bald, NC: Luftee Knob, NC

The springs that form Palmer Creek, once known as Indian Creek, begin on the sides of the Balsam Mountains at an elevation of more than 5,200 feet. From there, the stream picks up a steady flow of water from feeder streams as it tumbles down. It passes through former grassy glades and old homesites, before passing over the gentle terrain of the cove.

Access to Palmer Creek:

The main stream of Palmer Creek is accessible by auto for 1.6 miles upstream from the campground. Upstream from the confluence of Rough Fork, the Palmer Creek Trail provides further access. The trailhead is located on the right side of Palmer Creek, 1.6 miles above the campground. It traces alongside the stream, and at 1.5 miles Pretty Hollow Creek flows into the main stream. This is also the site of the starting point for Pretty Hollow Gap Trail (see Pretty Hollow Creek following).

The Palmer Creek Trail continues alongside the main stream 2.6 miles, where Lost Bottom Creek enters. The confluence of Beech Creek and Falling Rock Creek is located at 3.1 miles. The combination of the two streams signals the beginning of Palmer Creek. The Palmer Creek Trail continues alongside Falling Rock Creek for a very short distance before leaving the stream.

Published: 29 Apr 2002 | Last Updated: 15 Sep 2010
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication


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