Thursday, May 31, 2007

Where to Trout Fish in Washington

If you live in Washington, you probably know that many of the rivers and streams will open tomorrow for trout fishing. And you may even know some of the best fishing spots in the state.

But did you know there are other streams that are often overlooked which provide some great trout fishing as well? Some of these streams are under fished - so you can find some big rainbows in them!!

You can read more about the trout fishing in Washington by clicking here.

And if you catch a really nice trout, be sure to come back and tell us about it!

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Free Trout Fishing Day for Kids at Sparks Marina

Sparks Rotary and the Sparks Parks and Recreation Department are offering a day of free trout fishing at 9 a.m. on June 9 at the Sparks Marina for kids ages 7-17. The Sparks Marina is located at 300 Howard Drive in Sparks, Nevada.

The lake is stocked with rainbow and German brown trout and averages 60 feet in depth (with the deepest part of the lake being 120 feet deep).

Other activities and facilities at the park include: swimming, picnics, boating (no gas engines and must be hand launched), scuba diving, wind surfing, 2 mile walking/running trail, volleyball courts, playgrounds, showers and a concession stand.

An All-Terrain Wheelchair is available for use by people with disabilities at the Sparks Marina Park. This unique piece of equipment will allow equal access to the sandy beaches and water with some personal assistance. Please call the Park Ranger office at (775) 691-9130 for reservation and usage information

For more information, you can email the park ( or call (775) 353-2385.
You can also download a schedule of 2007 activities from the Sparks Parks and Recreation web site.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Private Trout Fishing Waters in Virginia

Bill Cochran (columnist for the Roanoke Times) recently published a list of private trout fishing waters in Virginia. Although private, anglers can pay special fees to cast flies in these trout waters.

The information was compiled by Bill and a Dan Genest (a knowledgeable, well-traveled trout angler). With Bill's permission, I've republished the information below for our readers. The comments in quotes are Dan's.

Beaver Creek: Rockingham County, west of Harrisonburg in Ottobine. Private water managed by the Massanutten Chapter of Trout Unlimited. Donation to fish, usually $10-20. Permit available at country store in Ottobine on a first-come-first serve basis with a four-rod per day limit. Closed Sundays. About 2 miles of spring creek with freestone influences. Mostly stocked rainbows, but a few wild fish. Contact: 540-879-9287. "Very nice, small stream with spunky fish."

Buffalo Creek: Guided, catch-and-release fly-fishing trips on five-eights' mile of excellent rainbow trout water about 5 miles from Lexington, Fee $50 to $85; accommodations, $95 to $169, at B&B at Llewellyn Lodge in Lexington. Contact/guide is John Roberts, 540-463-3235;

Cascades Creek: On The Homestead property near Hot Springs, flows out of a golf course and into a scenic and rugged gorge that provides falls and pools that hold wild and stocked rainbow trout, lessons and guides available, contact is Allegheny Outfitters on Cottage Row, 540-839-7760 ex. 57760.

Dunlap Creek: Escatawba near Covington, 540-965-8577. Owned by Derrick Barr. Fee is $100 per angler, per day. Reservations required; eight-rod limit. Two miles of freestone with some spring influence. Mostly rainbows with a few browns and brook trout. "Beautiful, well-managed stream. Excellent fishing."

Jackson River: A 2.5-mile stretch of the upper Jackson River in Meadow Lane Farm west of Warm Springs, stocked with rainbow trout, may find an occasional trout from Moomaw Lake, $50 fee, rental cottages available. Contacts:; 540-839-5959; Web site contains recommended fly patterns. "Well worth the trip and money."

Morman's River: Section located west of Charlottesville stocked with rainbows with a few wild brook trout, catch and release only. Fee is $40. Permits available at Albemarle Angler, 434-977-6882. "Best deal for fishing good, private water. Poaching does cut into the fishing, however."

North River: Riverbend Farm in Montezuma, west of Dayton. Owned and managed by Brain and Colby Trow out of Mossy Creek Fly Fishing in Harrisonburg. Reservation required; $60 fee. About 2 miles of freestone with strong spring creek influence. Mostly stocked rainbows with a few native brook trout. Phone 540-434-2444. "A large, beautiful, cold trout stream flowing through the Shenandoah Valley. Excellent bug hatches. Fishing is excellent, but can get challenging."

Piney River: Called Rivenridge at Piney Forks. About 2 miles of South and North Forks of Piney River, rainbows and brook trout. Fee is $79. Owned and managed by Angler’s Lane Fly Shop in Graves Mill Shopping Center, Forest, 434-385-0200.

Potts Creek: Two miles of spring-fed stream stocked with 2- to 7-pound rainbow trout and an occasional brown trout in Craig County’s Paint Bank. Operated by Potts Creek Outfitters; Josh Duncan is the wildlife manager. Fee is $75 per day for catch and release; guides, if desired. Swinging Bridge Restaurant/tackle shop and Depot Lodge nearby. Information form 540-897-5555.

Rose River: Rose River Farm near Syria in Madison County. Bookings through The Albemarle Angler, 1129 Emmet Street, Charlottesville; 434-977-6882. Fee is $75. About 1 mile of freestone stream, with mostly large,stocked rainbows.

Smith River: Called Susie Q, located north of Harrisonburg just off of I-81. Owned and managed by Brian and Colby Trow of Mossy Creek Fly Fishing in Harrisonburg, 540-434-2444. Fee is $60. There is a rod limit on the 1-mile plus of spring creek that contains brows and rainbows. The landowners have created several in-stream structures to prevent erosion and create pools. "Can be a very exciting place to fish with good hatches."

Stoney Creek: Located at Wintergreen Resort, freestone mountain creek stocked with brook trout, $20 for a permit, managed by Brian and Colby Trow at Mossy Creek Fly Fishing in Harrisonburg. 540-434-2444. "A fun little stream to fish."

Others: Two additional areas that cater to bait fishermen but can be attractive to fly anglers are Cripple Creek near Rural Retreat; call Cedar Springs at 276-686-4505, and Meadow Creek at Big Pine in Craig County, or 540-864-5551.

It's a good idea to call ahead and double check the information above. Things have a way of changing unexpectedly.

Thanks to Bill Cohran for sharing this information and allowing us to republish it here!

Updated: 10-Feb.-09:

Cripple Creek is another private fishing water that has recently opened in Rural Retreat Virginia. For more information about trout fishing at Cripple Creek, click here.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Trout Fishing Opens on June 1st

While many Washington anglers will be out fishing this Memorial Day weekend, some have chosen to wait until June 1st - when rivers and streams generally open for trout fishing.

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife generally waits until spawning season is over before opening many rivers and streams for trout fishing. This is part of an ongoing effort to protect wild trout.

Cedar River will be among the rivers open June 1 for trout fishing. The fishery has selective gear rules, and is catch and release only.

Other rivers to try on the June 1 opener for steelhead are the Stillaguamish North Fork (fly-fishing only), Snoqualmie (no bait allowed), Soleduck, Hoh, Bogachiel, Green, Skykomish, Satsop, Elochoman, Skagit, Calawah and Chehalis.

You might want to keep in mind that you're not allowed to keep and possess bull trout on the Skagit river.

Also until further notice the Cowlitz River is closed to all fishing. This closure will assist the Cowlitz Trout Hatchery which serves to release large numbers of hatchery smolts and also traps hatchery adult broodstock.

The fly fishermen at Lone and Pass lakes are doing quite well on trout. Other trout lakes worth checking out are Meridian, Jameson, Warden, Cassidy, Roesiger, Green, Martha, Pine, Lone, Cottage, Mayfield, Rattlesnake, Langlois, McMurray, Wilderness, Bosworth, Spanaway, Angle, Wapato, Spectacle, Deer and Tanwax.

If you don't have a fishing license yet, you might want to mark June 9th and 10th on your calendar! These days have been designated free fishing days (meaning, that no license is required for residents or non-residents). However, a catch record card is still required to fish for or retain Dungeness crab, steelhead, salmon, sturgeon and halibut in most waters.

Want to know which trout streams are under fished in Washington? Click here.

Good luck!

Thursday, May 24, 2007

New State Record in Michigan for Brown Trout

We've said it before, and we'll say it again .... records are made to be broken!

On May 13, 2007 a new brown trout record was set in Michigan by Casey Richey (owner of Casey's Custom Fly Shop). The fish was pulled out of Lake Michigan in Frankfort and weighed 36.81 ounces and measured 43 inches in length.

Casey caught the trout while trolling a No. 9 Rapala about 100 yards off pier heads between Elberta and Frankfort.

Our congratulations to Casey!

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Catch a Tagged Trout and Win a Prize!

Lake Cuyamaca is well known to San Diego anglers. Recently, five Alpers trout were tagged and released into the lake. All but two have been caught. Catching a tagged trout will reward the angler with motor boat rental and 4 fishing permits for 1 one day!!!

Mt. Lassen will be stocking 1,200 lbs of the finest trout once again this week!! Last week 50lbs of trophy trout between 8lbs and 12 lbs were stocked.

In addition to its trophy trout, Lake Cuyamaca offers a fully interactive GPS fishing guide (to help you find the fishing hot spots at the lake).

Good luck catching those two tagged Alpers trout!

Monday, May 21, 2007

Wild Rainbow Trout in Oklahoma

The future of Oklahoma trout fishing is looking a whole lot brighter!

For the last two years, biologists have verified the natural reproduction of wild rainbow trout in the Lower Mountain Fork River in McCurtin County, Oklahoma. These trout spawns are the first of their kind in Oklahoma!

This means that in the future anglers may be able to fish for wild rainbow trout in one of Oklahoma's most popular trout streams.

Why is this such a big deal? Because wild trout are getting harder to find due to various factors including man-made dams, water contamination, over-fishing, etc. In order to spawn and reproduce, wild trout need very clean and cool flowing water with gravel beds. In addition to man-made problems, this is the time of year that many wildfires result in contamination of nearby streams.

And from an angling perspective, catching wild trout is like no other experience. Wild trout tend to be much more acrobatic, colorful and more challenging to catch than hatchery trout.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Trout Fishing Action in Pennsylvania.

Here's a quick look at current trout fishing action in Pennsylvania.

Trout fishing continues to be productive on Lost Creek. Anglers should fish the deeper holes using baits such as wax worms and maggots.

In Perry County, Holman Lake at Little Buffalo State Park continues to produce daily catches of trout. PowerBait in assorted colors are working the best. Anglers should use light line (4 lb test) and just enough weight to get the power bait to the bottom.

Laurel Lake in Cumberland County was scheduled for stocking yesterday. So you might want to check the trout fishing action there.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Take a Kid Fishing Day at Whitewater State Park

You'd like to take your kids trout fishing but don't know where to begin? Well, help is on the way.

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and Trout Unlimited are sponsoring Take A Kid Trout Fishing Day at Whitewater State Park on Saturday, June 9.

This event is a great way to get started trout fishing with kids ages 5-15. Guides will take small groups throughout the park. The guides will focus on teaching you how to rig your rod, where to cast for trout and how to release the fish safely.

The program is 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., Saturday, June 9 with fishing to begin at 8:30 a.m.

Participants can bring their own spinning rod and reel or use one provided by the sponsors. Trout Unlimited of Winona will provide lunch at noon and there will be an electro-fishing demonstration at 1 p.m.

The event is free. There is an "Open House" at the park this day, so the entrance fee is waived.

Because it is Take a Kid Fishing weekend, adults do not need a fishing license or trout stamp when fishing with youth. Participants will each receive a small starter tackle box and activity book from the DNR MinnAqua Program. Whitewater Valley Express of Elba provides bait.

To register, call Whitewater State Park at 507-932-3007, extension 0. Registration is limited.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Preston Trout Days May 18-20th

The Preston Trout Days will commence on May 18th and run through the 20th. The weekend will be filled with events including fishing contests for kids and adults, the grand parade and more.

Most of the trout fishing fun will held on Saturday. Beginning at sunrise, adults can register for the adult fishing contest at the Preston Fire Department and then head to their favorite trout stream.

The kids fishing contest will be on Saturday, May 19th at Camp Creek in Maust pasture. Kids must be accompanied by and adult and bring their own fishing equipment.

The Trout Days Grand Parade will on Saturday, May 19th at 4 pm in downtown Preston, followed by fireworks.

There are many more activities scheduled throughout the weekend, and you can check the Preston Trout Days schedule for the rest of them.

If you have any questions, you can also contact the city of Preston at (507) 765-2153.

If you'd like to get a few tips before the fishing contests begin, you can click here for some Minnesota trout fishing tips.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Help Save Yellowstone Cutthroat Trout by Catching Lake Trout

Biologist have been watching the number of Yellowstone Cutthroat trout decrease for years, but each year the numbers are more alarming.

Yellowstone Cutthroat trout are a subspecies of Cutthroat trout and are native to Yellowstone Lake (where they get their name). Originally, they were found throughout northwest of Wyoming and sub-central Montana, but today 91% of the remaining trout are found in Yellowstone Lake and River.

Like other threatened trout species, hybridization and competition pose the biggest threat to Yellowstone Cutthroat trout - and Lake trout are believed to the major the culprit threatening the survival of these native Cutthroat trout.

Lake trout are not native to their area. They were first discovered in Yellowstone in 1994, although some believe they may have been there since 1989. Who brought them there is unknown - but authorities do believe that somebody planted Lake trout in Yellowstone illegally.

Despite the state's efforts to control Lake trout populations, these trout continue to populate at a high rate and thrive. This story offers further evidence of what can happen when non-native trout are introduced in other water systems, and why it can be a bad thing.

For more information about the problem and recovery effort for Yellowstone Cutthroat, click here.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Trout Fishing Tip of the Day - How to Find Hot Spots

Want to know where the trout fishing hot spots are? Where folks are catching steelhead trophy size trout?

Check your state records!

Each time a record trout is recorded on the books, the name of the water that trout came from is recorded too. In Washington and Oregon, all steelhead kept must be recorded too.

This little trick has been used by advanced trout anglers for years and is one that many would like to keep secret. But while these records are a great source of information, they are somewhat limited.

For example, if an angler decides to release his catch rather than use it to enter the record books, then the location of the catch may remain secret forever (if he/she isn't talking). Again, many advanced anglers will keep their favorite fishing holes secret because they like the solitude of fishing more than anything else.

Most states list the details for record fish on their web site. So this information can be easily checked. So have a look. You may just discover some great new fishing spots in your area!

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Angler's Legacy - A Chance to Make a Difference

Those of us that grew up fishing have childhood memories of favorite fishing excursions with loved ones. While both of my parents fished, it was my grandpa who taught me the most about fishing and many of my memories are of our excursions together.

I remember many evenings spent preparing the fishing gear and boat for those early 4 a.m. departures. I remember how patient he was while untangling my lines (over and over again). And I remember catching him a time or two putting a fish he hooked on the end of my line while I was distracted so that I would think I caught the fish.

It's because of these memories that many of us continue to fish and teach the young anglers in our life today. But despite more fishing opportunities today, fewer people are buying licenses and going fishing. Why?

Life today is different.

People spend more time indoors today watching TV or playing video games. More and more people don't seem to make the weekend excursions to nearby lakes and rivers like they used to (no doubt rising costs play a role). This all means that many kids today will never experience the joy of catching their first fish. They'll miss out on the same special memories that so many of us share.

But with your help, this can change. has started a website for anglers to help share the fishing legacy with others. This is an opportunity to help somebody else experience the joy of fishing.

Simply put, Angler's Legacy is a national mission created to help anglers give something back to others, and make a difference. All they want is for you to make a pledge to take somebody fishing – a family member, co-worker, neighbor, acquaintance at church or, perhaps, the mechanic who works on your car.

Take the pledge - I did! It's free and easy!

Then come back and share your favorite fishing memory with us. We love fishing stories - especially the ones made while growing up.

Monday, May 07, 2007

Fish Consumption Advisories Issued in Utah

Utah's Division of Wildlife Resources has issues a fish consumption advisory for brown, rainbow and splake trout in six popular fishing areas. Elevated levels of mercury were found in these trout resulting in the concern.

The advisories are in effect for brown trout from the Weber River near Morgan, Utah and Jordanelle Reservoir in Wasatch County; rainbow trout from the Upper Enterprise Reservoir in Washington County and Newcastle Reservoir in Iron County; brown trout from Calf Creek in Garfield County and splake trout from Joe's Valley Reservoir in Emery County.

Nearly all fish and shellfish contain traces of mercury. For most people, the risk from mercury by eating fish and shellfish is not a health concern. Yet, some fish and shellfish contain higher levels of mercury that may harm an unborn baby or young child's developing nervous system.

The risks from mercury in fish and shellfish depend on the amount of fish and shellfish eaten and the levels of mercury in the fish and shellfish. For this reason, mercury levels in fish are monitored and advisories are issued when levels reach a certain point.

For more information about the recent fish consumption advisory in Utah, click here.

Saturday, May 05, 2007

How to Borrow Tackle in North Carolina

Ever wanted to learn how to fish but didn't have the equipment? Feel too overwhelmed by choices to go out and buy your own?

North Carolina is offering beginner anglers a solution to these problems. They've started a Fishing Tackle Loaner Program, where novice anglers can borrow rods, reels and other tackle.

First-time and novice anglers in North Carolina are encouraged to borrow rods and reels free of charge to join in the fishing fun this year. The loaner rods and reels are provided by various city and county parks statewide and by the NC Wildlife Resources Commission.

The program works much like the library system. Anglers of all ages register at participating parks to receive a tackle loaner ID card, which allows them to check out a rod and reel. Anglers under 18 years of age must have a parent or guardian complete the registration form.

After returning the loaner rods and reels to the park office, first-time participants under 16 years of age will receive a free mini-tackle box containing hooks, bobbers, sinkers, and a stringer. Tackle loaner ID cards can be used at other participating sites in North Carolina, but rods and reels must be returned to the original loaner site.

For more information about the Fishing Tackle Loaner Program, click here.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Trout Fishing Heating Up in Ventura County

Anglers are doing well in Ventura County at the moment. Here's a few trout fishing tips for the area.

At Lake Cachuma, anglers have been catching trout by by trolling with needlefish or nightcrawlers with flashers. Trout are being caught from zero to 20 feet.

At Castaic Lake a recent trout stocking in the lagoon has resulted in anglers catching their limits using PowerBait.

And at Lake Piru, the trout are hitting on four-color kastmasters, needlefish and rapalas.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Trout Fishing in Lakes versus Rivers

Given local trout fishing opportunities, many anglers find themselves fishing primarily in lakes compared to rivers and streams (or vice versa). While this is fine, the problem is that many anglers think they can fish a river the same way they fish a lake, or fish a lake the same way they fish a river. This is not necessarily the case.

Water conditions are different in lakes versus rivers and streams. As a result, trout tend to behave differently too.

Rivers and streams having moving water (or currents). As water flows down the river, the banks are shaped (and reshaped) and rocks, logs, and other debris are moved. Best of all (from a trout's perspective), food is also carried in the moving current. Heavy rains can result in more changes to the river landscape and color.

Lakes are primarily stillwater - meaning they generally lack flowing water. So the surrounding banks, rocks, etc. rarely change. While heavy rains are great for water levels, they generally aren't going to change the landscape of the lake. Also, because there is no moving water, food is not carried in a current from one place to another - which in turn means that trout have to swim around and find it.

All of these conditions affect trout fishing.

Security and protection are very important to trout. Rivers and streams tend to be shallower than lakes, so trout will look for undercut banks, tree logs, big rocks, etc. to provide cover and protection. While these things may be present in some lakes, they tend to be more present in rivers and streams.

In rivers and streams, moving water also means that trout can lie in wait for food to come to them (assuming the current isn't too strong and food is available).

In lakes, trout usually have to swim around and find food (as opposed to letting the current bring food to them). Also, in order to find comfort and protection trout will have to head for deeper water at times, which can make finding them difficult in a lake.

Many anglers find river and stream fishing much easier since trout can be easier to find once you learn to read the river. You still have to have some skill in selecting the rod, reel, line, and tackle, and know how to entice the trout into taking your offering - but you may have an easier time finding trout (assuming you know how to read a river). Often times, you can keep fishing the same holding area and catch trout after trout.

The biggest challenge for lake fishers is finding trout. Fish finders are a great asset on the lake. The better ones can not only find fish, but also tell you what depth they're at. But if fish are scattered throughout the lake (as they tend to be at certain times of the year), it can be difficult to locate a good fishing spot - and often you're left with having to cast and wait for trout to swim by and find your baited hook.

While you may be able to fish nightcrawlers or artificial flies on both lakes and rivers, the conditions are different and therefore may require some different tactics. You may have to look harder to find trout in lakes compared to a river. On the other hand, knowing how to read the water is critical to success on rivers and streams.

One thing is common to both water conditions though, and that is that morning and dusk are usually best the time to catch trout. This is not to say you can't catch trout at other times of the day (you can). But insects are out and out in large numbers at dawn and dusk and so trout are too!

It's important to be aware of different water conditions and how they may affect where trout are holding and/or feeding if you want to catch them.

For more information on trout fishing in rivers, click here.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

How to Catch Trout - Part 2

Yesterday, I mentioned that in order to catch trout consistently, you need to understand the science behind trout fishing. Today, I wanted to elaborate a bit more about that.

Trout are cold-blooded fish. They require cool and clean water to survive. Most trout species require water temperatures that are 50- 68 degrees Fahrenheit (or 10-20 degrees Celsius). Some trout species (like lake and steelhead trout) do alright in cooler water. But generally speaking, stick to the 50-68 degree rule.

When the water is cooler than this, trout become lethargic and are not interested in feeding. When water temperatures get above 70 degrees, trout start to suffocate - and lose interest in feeding. Survival becomes the most important thing on a trout's mind in both extremes. They will try and find water that makes them more comfortable.

Knowing this will help you catch trout in difficult weather conditions. Trout may have to head for deeper cooler water (common in lakes) or find deeper shaded water (common in rivers and streams). Either way, if you want to catch trout you'll have to be aware of water temperatures and how they affect trout.

Trout can also see, smell, and sense vibrations in the water. Ever walked up to a river bank and saw a trout swim off in a hurry? He saw you coming and swam away for protection.

Knowing trout can see you coming is especially important in rivers, streams and creeks where water tends to be quite a bit shallower. You'll want to approach cautiously so as not to spook any fish.

Trout have a lateral line that runs down the side of their body and it allows them to sense movement and vibration in the water. This line help trout sense prey and predators nearby. It also helps them sense your spinner or lure which may be nearby.

Lures and spinners are very effective in catching trout because they emit vibration and flash in the water as they work - which allow trout to see or feel their presence from a greater distance. In cold water when trout are lethargic, lures and spinners can excite a trout from a greater distance and entice them into striking.

But if you didn't understand that trout were lethargic due to their current water temperature and won't exert a lot of effort in feeding at that moment, you might miss the opportunity to catch them using this proven technique. And this is the difference between a random lucky catch and a seasoned pro knowing exactly what to do and when in order to catch more trout.

Hopefully this is starting to make some sense. If not, post a comment. Next, we'll look at some of the differences between lake and river fishing.