WASHINGTON DEPARTMENT OF FISH AND WILDLIFE
NEWS RELEASE
600 Capitol Way North, Olympia, WA 98501-1091

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April 28, 2003
Contact: John Hisata, (360) 902-2797
or Madonna Luers, (509) 456-4073

Catch rates, fish size run high for lake fishing season opener

Catch rates and fish size were good throughout much of the state on Saturday's opening day of lowland lake fishing.

Many recently-stocked, large triploid rainbow trout were caught at rates well above expectations. Several trout exceeding 20 inches were seen in creels, and some tipped the scales at four- plus pounds.

With over 10 million trout and 12 million kokanee stocked in Washington lakes, fishing is expected to remain good for the entire season, said Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) fish manager John Hisata.

Anglers, including families and other groups, turned out for an opener that offered an array of weather conditions ranging from warm and sunny in the Okanogan to rain and fog in the opposite corner of the state. Angler turnout varied with weather conditions, said Hisata, who compiled catch reports across the state.

"In southwest Washington rain kept angler turnout down and generally shortened trip length, while in Okanogan County warm weather brought out both anglers and trout, with excellent catch rates in waters such as Leader, Wannacut and Conconully lakes," he said.

The top lakes in average catches were Wapato in Chelan County; Rowland in Klickitat County; Tiger in Mason County; Leader and Wannacut in Okanogan County; Bonney, Clear and Tanwax in Pierce County; Erie and Sixteen in Skagit County; West Medical in Spokane County; and Clear and Long lakes in Thurston County. Those lakes all produced catches of 4.6 fish per angler or better which-at a five-trout-per-day limit-meant limits for most anglers checked.

The following table shows all lakes checked:

County Water Average fish
per angler
Size, type, etc.
Chelan Beehive Lake 3.8  
Clear Lake 2.8  
Lilly Lake 4.4  
Wapato Lake 5  
Clark Klineline Pond 0.7  
Grant Blue Lake 2.1 rainbow 12" to 17", several rainbow 4+ lbs.
Deep Lake 2.9 Almost all triploid rainbow 15" to 17"
Park Lake 4.3 Several rainbow 4+ lbs.
Perch Lake 4.5  
Vic Meyer Lake 2 50% tiger trout catchables 9"-12"
Warden Lake 2.1 rainbow 12"-17"
Grays Harbor Aberdeen Lake 2.1 largest 27"
Failor Lake 3.2 largest 17"
Sylvia Lake 3.8 largest 16" RB
Vance Creek Pond #1 2.2 largest 31.5"
Vance Creek Pond #2 1.5 largest 28.5"
Island Deer Lake 3  
Jefferson Anderson Lake 4.5 fry plants 12", C.O. 15">
Tarboo Lake 2.3 cutthroat broodstock 14"
Teal Lake 4.1 largest 24"
King Cottage Lake 2  
Geneva Lake 3.5  
Langlois Lake 4  
Pine Lake 2.8  
Rattlesnake Lake 4  
Wilderness Lake 2.3  
Steel Lake 3.2  
Kitsap Buck Lake 3.1 mostly catchables
Wildcat Lake 3.1 largest 16.5"
Klickitat Rowland Lake 4.8 mostly limits
Mason Benson Lake 2.9 many carryovers
Devereaux Lake 1.8 largest 18.5"
Haven Lake 2.3 largest 17"
Nahwatzel Lake 0.6 largest 22.4"
Phillips Lake 1.8 mostly triploid rainbow
Stump Lake 2 largest 18.5" rainbow
Tiger Lake 4.6 mostly 2 year rainbow
Wooten Lake 2.7 largest 20" cutthroat
Okanogan Aeneas Lake 2.5  
Alta Lake 3.9 all catchable plants
Blue Lake (Sinlahekin) 2  
Conconully Lake 4.5 lots of limits
Fish Lake 2.3  
Leader Lake 4.8 mostly limits
Long Lake 4  
Round Lake 5 limits
Wannacut Lake 4.8 mostly limits
Pacific Cases Pond 0.9 largest 17.5"
Snag Lake 0.5 11.5" average
Western Lake 0.3 11.5" average
Pend Orielle Marshall Lake 0.3 11" cutthroat
Pierce Bay Lake 2.9 almost all 2 year fish
Bonney Lake 5 low effort, high catch
Clear Lake 5 limits
Ohop Lake 3.7 few large fish
Rapjohn Lake 4.3 many triploid rainbow
Silver Lake 3.7 many 12"-14" rainbow
Tanwax Lake 4.9 many limits
Skagit Erie Lake 4.8 mostly limits
Heart Lake 4.7 mostly limits
McMurray Lake 3.8  
Sixteen Lake 4.6 mostly limits
Skamania Erie Lake 4.8 mostly limits
Icehouse Lake 4.3  
Kidney Lake 1.7  
Little Ashe Lake 1.7  
Northwestern Reservoir 2 reports of large fish
Snohomish Armstrong Lake 4.5 mostly limits
Bosworth Lake 1.9  
Howard Lake 4.6 mostly limits
Ki Lake 4.1  
Margaret Lake 3.6  
Martha Lake (AM) 2.4  
Storm Lake 0.9  
Spokane Badger Lake 3.6  
Clear Lake 2.6 91% carryovers
Fish Lake 3.5 tiger trout
Fishtrap Lake 1.3 largest 23.5"
West Medical Lake 4.6 carryovers 15"-17"
Williams Lake 3.3 largest 22"
Stevens Cedar Lake 4.1 rainbow 10"-14"
Deep Lake 2.8 largest 20"
Mudget Lake 1.8 satisfied anglers
Rocky Lake 0.7 rainbow 8"-20"
Starvation Lake 4.4 carryovers 16% of catch
Waitts Lake 2.1 rainbow 8"-20"
Thurston Clear Lake 4.9 largest 22"
Deep Lake 2.8 limits
Hicks Lake 3.9 10% carryovers
Lawrence Lake 3.6 some cutthroat to 14"
Long Lake 4.6 many 15"-16" rainbow
McIntosh Lake 2.1 triploids 19"
Munn Lake 3.5 effort down
Offut Lake 0.2 low effort
Pattison Lake 3.7 many limits
Summit Lake 4.9 many limits, rainbow 13"-15"
Whatcom Cain Lake 2.5  
Padden Lake 4.3  
Silver Lake 4.3  
Toad Lake 4.3