Just for dads (and their kids, both young and old!), Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife hatchery crews are stocking 5,000 extra big (1-1/2-pound triploid) rainbow trout in 14 lakes across the state just before Father’s Day weekend, June 16-17, 2012. You can purchase a fishing license as a gift for Dad online or by toll-free 24/7 phone at 866-246-9453 or at any of 600 license dealers.
There are hundreds of well-stocked lakes that grow big trout (find them at Fish Washington or check the Statewide Hatchery Trout Stocking Plan, which includes 42,000 earlier-stocked triploids in 117 lakes), but here’s where you can take Dad to catch some of the 5,000 extra big fish stocked just for Father’s Day weekend:
North Puget Sound | Olympic Peninsula | Central | Eastern
Green Lake (250 acres) - 870 extra triploid rainbow trout
In the heart of Seattle near the intersection of Highway SR-99 and 60th North. Open to fishing year-round. Catchable-size rainbow trout are stocked in the spring and fingerling brown trout are stocked in the fall. Catchable-size channel catfish (8-11 inches) were stocked in fall 2011 to provide additional opportunity. Other species present include largemouth bass, rock bass, pumpkinseed sunfish and brown bullhead catfish. Green Lake Park (Seattle Parks and Recreation) extends around the entire lake providing excellent shoreline access to anglers. In addition, fishing piers are located at the south, east and northeast shores of the lake and car-toppers can be launched from the shore as long as they are not motor-powered.
Lake Geneva (27 acres) - 450 extra triploid rainbow trout
Two miles southwest of Auburn off Highway SR-18. Open to fishing from the 4th Saturday in April to October 31. Fishing opportunities include catchable-size rainbow trout that are stocked in the spring and largemouth bass. This small lake can be accessed via a WDFW boat ramp on the northwest shore and Lake Geneva Park (King County Parks and Recreation) on the northeastern shore.
Bitter Lake (16 acres) - 100 extra triploid rainbow trout
In north Seattle, west of Highway SR-99 at 130th. Open to fishing year-round. Angling opportunities include catchable-size rainbow trout, pumpkinseed sunfish, largemouth bass, and brown bullhead catfish. A city park (Seattle Parks and Recreation) on the east end offers shore fishing and the opportunity to launch car-toppers, but no developed boat ramp.
Echo Lake (11 acres) - 100 extra triploid rainbow trout
This small lake is located along Highway 99 at N 200th St. Open to fishing year-round. Fishing opportunities include catchable-size rainbow trout that are stocked in the spring and largemouth bass. The lake can be accessed at Echo Lake Park (City of Shoreline).
Blackmans Lake (61 acres) - 300 extra triploid rainbow trout
In the city of Snohomish, just east of Highway SR-9. Open to fishing year-round. Catchable-size rainbow trout and cutthroat trout fry are stocked annually. There are also angling opportunities for largemouth bass, yellow perch, and common carp throughout the year. Expect fair-to-good trout fishing in the spring and fall months. There is a boat and bank access at Ferguson Park on the southern shore and two disabled-accessible fishing piers at Hill Park on the eastern shore (City of Snohomish).
Gissburg Ponds aka Twin Lakes (16 acres) - 350 extra triploid rainbow trout
This excellent fishing opportunity for both adults and children is located about five miles north of Marysville at Gissburg Twin Lakes County Park (Snohomish County Parks).
Both ponds are open to fishing year-round. The north pond (North Gissburg/Twin) is open only to juveniles (under 15 years of age). South Gissburg/Twin is open to all legal anglers. Catchable-size rainbow trout are stocked several times in spring and early summer. Jumbo triploid rainbow trout are also stocked in the south pond in the spring. Largemouth bass and bluegill are the dominant warmwater species in both ponds, with a small number of pumpkinseed sunfish present in the north pond (youth fishing only).
Whistle Lake (37 acres) - 300 extra triploid rainbow trout
There is a walk-in public access to this lake three miles south of Anacortes. Open to fishing year-round. Fishing should be fair for largemouth bass, yellow perch, and cutthroat trout.
Island Lake (41 acres) - 300 extra triploid rainbow trout
Island Lake enjoys a year-round open season. The lake is stocked in the spring with catchable-size (10-12”) rainbow trout. Some larger cutthroat trout broodstock weighing about one pound each were stocked in March. Daily trout limit is 5 fish; no more than 2 over 14” may be retained. Also watch for the juveniles-only fishing event sponsored by local sportsmens clubs during June. Fishing for largemouth bass is also available. Internal combustion engines are prohibited by county ordinance.
Vance Creek (Elma) Ponds (~30 acres) - 100 extra triploid rainbow trout
In the town of Elma, Pond #1 (13.4 acres, first pond on north side of access road) is open only to juveniles, seniors, and holders of disability license or designated harvester cards. Pond #2 (17.1 acres) is open to all anglers. Both are open for fishing the last Saturday in April through November. These ponds are planted with 10 to 14 inch rainbow trout in April and May. “Quality trout” that average 4-6 pounds each, reared through a cooperative project between Chehalis Basin Fisheries Task Force and WDFW, are also planted into both ponds. The daily limit of 5 trout, no more than 2 over 14” that may be retained, is in effect in both ponds. Surplus adult hatchery steelhead trout are also planted when available. Landlocked salmon rules apply and a catch record card is not required. However, all steelhead trout caught and retained count as part of the trout daily limit. Some largemouth bass are also present, and fishing improves for these fish as the waters warm in the summer.
American Lake (1,091 acres) - 1,200 extra triploid rainbow trout
From Tacoma, drive I-5 south. Take exit 122 to Camp Murray (Berkley). Turn right on Berkley and then left on Portland Ave. WDFW access site is on left after bend in road. WDFW boat ramp has a two-lane concrete plank ramp and vault toilets, while two county parks provide access, bank fishing and toilets. Private and military resort facilities are also available. American Lake is open year-round and offers good harvest opportunities for stocked rainbow trout and kokanee. The lake also supports naturally reproducing populations of yellow perch, brown bullhead catfish, rock bass, largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, and coastal cutthroat.
Cooper Lake (129 acres) - 265 extra triploid rainbow trout
This high lake (2,788 feet) is adjacent to a small Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest campground (Owhi), 23 miles from Cle Elum on Forest Service Road #46 (3½ miles northwest of Salmon-La-Sac from the upper Cle Elum River). Cooper Lake enjoys a year-round open fishing season and in the past has provided fair fishing for brook trout and rainbows 8-10 inches. Brown trout in the 1 to 3-pound range and some much larger are also available. Small kokanee and cutthroat are also taken. Beginning in 2012 the lake will be stocked with larger catchable sized rainbow trout as well as jumbo trout (1-1.5 lbs each). A boat launch is available, but all motors are prohibited by county ordinance.
Lavender Lake (18 acres) - 150 extra triploid rainbow trout
Three miles east of Lake Easton State Park near the north side of I-90. This small lake has a year-round open season and a WDFW access site. One can expect good fishing for stocked rainbow trout during the early spring. The lake is also stocked with some 1 pound “jumbo” rainbow trout.
Easton Ponds (13 acres) - 150 extra triploid rainbow trout
These three easily accessible gravel-pit ponds are adjacent to I-90 Exit 71 near Easton. They are open to fishing year-round and will be stocked with catchable-sized rainbow trout beginning in late April. The lake is also stocked with some 1-pound “jumbo” rainbow trout. The ponds are temporarily closed from March to late April for a special coho salmon rearing project.
Williams Lake (317 acres) - 365 extra triploid rainbow trout
Twelve miles southwest of Cheney reached via Mullinix Road. Open season is from the last Saturday in April through September 30. Williams Lake provides excellent fishing for fry-planted rainbow and cutthroat trout up to 18 inches. This is traditionally one of the best trout lakes in the state.There is a WDFW access site on the northwest shore of the lake. The lake also has two full-service resorts.