The fine print …
There is no entrance fee or extra cost to participate in the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) statewide Trout Derby. Anyone with a valid resident or non-resident 2023 Get Outdoors package, annual freshwater, annual Fish WA, annual combination, or temporary combination license may participate. Anglers must follow all rules, regulations, and daily limits as outlined in the current fishing regulations pamphlet and emergency rule changes set by WDFW. One- to three-day temporary combination licenses are NOT valid for game fish for the 8-day period beginning the fourth Saturday in April unless you are active duty resident military personnel.
The law does not require children 14 years of age or under to obtain a fishing license. However, they must actively participate and be able to demonstrate the ability to handle the gear by themselves. They must also follow the same rules, regulations, and daily limits as adults. Adults may provide assistance but are not required to hold a license if they will not be fishing/harvesting themselves, and children must be present and take part in the entire process.
WDFW employees and their immediate family member(s) are prohibited from participating in the statewide Trout Derby. However, WDFW employees and immediate family member(s) may fish on their personal time in stocked lakes that contain prize fish. WDFW employees and their immediate family member(s) are NOT eligible to claim any derby prize(s).
All anglers who take part in Free Fishing Weekend (June 10-11, 2023) may participate in the statewide trout Fishing Derby and may redeem any tags caught on that weekend.
April 22: Statewide trout Derby officially opens on the lowland lakes opener
April 22-29: Temporary licenses are not valid for game fish species
June 10-11: Free Fishing Weekend
Oct. 31: Statewide Trout Derby ends
Nov. 3: This is the last day to report a winning Trout Derby tag. Anglers must call WDFW by 5 p.m., Pacific Daylight Time. Tags that are not called in to WDFW by 5 p.m. are not valid for prize redemption.
Nov. 8: This is the last day to redeem a winning trout derby tag at an affiliated derby prize donor. Tags must be redeemed no later than the prize donor’s close of business.
WDFW does not endorse any individual fishing derby prize donor. Each donor is responsible for their product or service and fulfillment of each prize.
WDFW will determine which lakes to stock with tagged derby prize fish. The list of lakes will be made available to the public. Anglers must follow all rules, regulations, and daily limits as outlined in the current fishing regulations pamphlet and all emergency rule changes set by WDFW. Tagged derby fish caught in violation of any rule or statute are subject to seizure and forfeiture under the provisions in RCW Chapter 77.15.
WDFW will maintain a list of all available prizes. Each tagged fish has a corresponding dealer and prize. In order to claim a prize, a successful angler must first validate their prize information using the prize claim portal on wdfwderby.com. The prize claim portal tool will provide the specific donor prize information corresponding to the tag, and the successful angler will be required to present the tag at the fishing derby prize donor’s place of business to claim the prize. In a few cases, donors have provided prizes to WDFW. If the tag that an angler calls in to WDFW corresponds to one of these prizes, WDFW will inform the angler and mail the prize to the angler, registered receipt required. Tags that are not called in to WDFW by Friday, Nov. 3, 2023, at 5 p.m. are not valid for prize redemption.