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Ready for some trout fishing? Or maybe a wedding?

From staff reports • May 25, 2018 at 9:30 AM

JOHNSON CITY – Watauga Riverbend Retreat, with a 7,000-square-foot home turned trout lodge located on the Watauga River, is opening just below a stretch of river that’s popular for recreational fishing and family float trips.

“There’s no other place like it on the river,” says owner Vince Davis, who says the heart of the Riverbend is a family atmosphere: a place where fishermen can bring their families to enjoy water sports. They also are close to a variety of low-cost local attractions that range from history and hands-on science to wildlife and family-friendly hiking trails.

In the evenings, it’s a place to relax around the fire, talk about the day on the river, and roast marshmallows to the sound of a tumbling creek and the sight of peaceful riverfront views.

“I’ve always got the bonfire going,” Davis says. “You can solve the world’s problems around a bonfire with a cold beer.”

The lodge began as a 1,200-square-foot farmhouse, which Davis renovated and expanded to its current size to provide a comfortable home away from home where fishermen can enjoy the area’s rural charm without having to settle for rustic accommodations.

The location makes for a perfect day, he says: “You get to catch a lot of fish in the regular trout stream, and you can drop off your fish and go to the trophy stream and go after the big boys.”

Behind the lodge is a houseboat with a deck that sits over the deepest part of the river: “You can sit there with a cold beer, and throw out your line and talk, and catch your limit most of the time without having to go anywhere.”

For just a little more than the cost of a hotel room, the Riverbend has some amazing amenities. All rooms include full kitchen access as well as the use of the game room and theatre room. The property also adjoins the Tweetsie Trail, a well-kept walking and biking trail that connects to downtown as well as to a unique Revolutionary War historic site.

It’s also possible to rent out the whole lodge, whether to house a family reunion or as a wedding venue.

Davis says he enjoys his primary business as a financial planner – but he also enjoys serving as host to people who enjoy his favorite hobbies: golf, bird hunting, and – of course – fishing.

More information on the Watauga Riverbend Retreat can be found online at its website - http://www.wataugariverbend.com or at Airbnb.com and vrbo.com. For more information, call (423) 202-1010 or send an email to: [email protected]