Dry River is potentially the best brook trout stream in the State. Biologists from the USGS and the Forest Service have stated that it is one of the most densely populated wild brook trout streams in the Mid-Atlantic.
Dry River is a large freestone stream that runs southeastward along US Rt. 33. The 14-mile stretch of Dry River above Rawley Springs is available to the public. Access and pull-offs are located all along Rt. 33.
Dry Rivers splits and Skidmore Fork continues upstream and is fishable to the dam at Switzer Lake. Dry River runs under Rt. 33 and continues upstream for about .5 miles on the right( North) side of 33. There is a very large flood plain that extends away from the River in most areas making fly casting very easy. It is also a very easily waded stream under normal flows as the gradient from the dam down to Rawley Springs is very gradual.
Anglers can expect excellent dry fly action from mid March through the summer months as long as water levels do not get to low. The green drake hatch around Memorial Day is one of the largest in the Shenandoah Valley. Nymph and streamer fishermen can find great action year round. Brook trout range from 4-10 inches with fish landed up to 14 inches!! VDGIF samples have produced very large fish over 11 inches annually. You may also find holdover rainbows and large holdover brook trout from VDGIF stockings that occur a few times a year.
Rawley Springs is located only 11 miles from downtown Harrisonburg making it about a 15 minute drive from the fly shop!
- Take 33 West(through Court Square) of Harrisonburg 11.7 miles to Rawley Springs.
- Fishing is accessible from Riven Rock Park (GW Forest) up to Switzer Reservoir.