At around 55 miles, the Tellico is one of the longest free-flowing trout streams east of the Rockies, and a good angler can pull 20 trout per day from its deep runs. Your access key: a guided trip with Reliance-based Southeastern Anglers. Book two nights at Donley Cabin, a rustic Civil Warera draft-dodger hideaway in Cherokee National Forest: no electricity, just a table, chairs, and whiskey. Meet your guide 30 minutes away in Tellico Plains, then drive five miles into the river basin, where you'll flick dry flies into tributaries teeming with eager 12-inchers.
EXPENSE REPORT Guided day trip for two (southeasternanglers.com): $350. Two nights in the cabin (reserve through National Recreation Reservation Service, 877-444-6777): $70. Gentleman Jack: $24. Cabin groceries for two: $25. Two-pound burgers at Prospectors restaurant, in Tellico Plains (423-253-6887): free if you can eat them in 20 minutes. Total: $469