Shad Fishing

Currently Booked Full through Spring of 2020.  Now taking reservations for April 2021.

The James River's shad fishery is world class. In the spring, hickory and American shad gather just below the falls of the James in the heart of Richmond during their annual spawning run. Over the four or five weeks of late March through the end of April, this fishery is like no other in Virginia. 
Marvel in the scenery, wildlife and history of the river on this downtown Richmond experience.

This trip is great for anglers of all ages.  Other fish species like the blueback herring and white perch can be caught and if you use the right lures, you can catch three or four at a time. Large striped bass will also make a showing for a short time, and schoolie sized stripers, 14" to 18" will remain around the falls for a while.

Meet your guide at Ancarrow's Landing, located on the southside of the James River, directly across from downtown Richmond's skyline.  Departure time varies.  Click here for directions to Ancarrow's.
Half-Day Shad (5-hours).  One or two,  $450.   Additional guests, $50 each.
Spin fishing tackle provided.  Fly fishing gear not provided.  Water and snacks provided.
Trip offered April 1 through the April 23.

To book a Spring 2021 Shad Trip, or for more information:
Contact Capt. Mike at 804-938-2350 or


Top right photo: Jackson is holding two river herring he caught at once.  The skyline of Richmond is in the background, so you see how close to downtown these fish really are. Dams were eventually built, blocking the shads historical spawning grounds, reducing their habitat. Over time, their numbers were reduced to the point of a moratorium. Today, hickory shad have rebounded well, while the American shad is still having problems recovering. 
-- Photo by Lynda Richardson
To the right: Andrew Campbell, shows off a beautiful American shad he caught on a fly.  Andrew ties more flies than there are shad in the river ... he probably tied the fly that caught the shad at 3am the morning this picture was taken.
--Photo by Discover the James 
What do people have to say about this trip?  "I like catching two fish at the same time.  Hurry up and take the picture ... I want to do it again."
-- Jackson V.