Cougar Lake

Located on Methow Wildlife Area four (4) miles east of Winthrop.  Anglers need to be aware of gear and bag limit restrictions based on time of year.  Expect rainbows in the 10-12 inch range.  Lake has a tendency to winterkill, so some supplemental plants of catchable rainbows may be needed in spring each year.  Spring plants of catchable rainbow should provide fish in the 12-14 inch range during the fall fishery.  Mudslides following the 2014 wildfires have inundated the campground, boat launch, and shoreline with several tons of sediment.  Restoration of access and facilities is unknown.

Two-pole fishing is allowed

Good for ice fishing

Special fishing restrictions:

Shoreline access: Good - Several shore areas can be accessed via a trail on west side of lake

Species you might catch

Lake information

County: Okanogan
Acreage: 6.90 ac.
Elevation: 3213 ft.
Center: 48.47769, -120.09517
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Catchable fish plants

Release Location: COUGAR LK (OKAN)
Stock Date Species Number Released Number of Fish Per Pound Facility
Apr 18, 2022 Rainbow 150 2.2 WELLS HATCHERY
May 1, 2020 Rainbow 150 2.19 WELLS HATCHERY
Apr 24, 2019 Rainbow 75 1.86 WELLS HATCHERY
Apr 25, 2018 Rainbow 150 2.2 WELLS HATCHERY
May 21, 2013 Rainbow 500 2.6 WELLS HATCHERY
May 17, 2012 Rainbow 900 2.2 WELLS HATCHERY
May 23, 2011 Rainbow 500 2 WELLS HATCHERY
May 5, 2010 Rainbow 250 2.2 WELLS HATCHERY
Release Location: COUGAR LK (BEAR CR)
Stock Date Species Number Released Number of Fish Per Pound Facility
May 22, 2015 Rainbow 600 2.5 WELLS HATCHERY
May 9, 2014 Rainbow 350 2.5 WELLS HATCHERY

Fishing prospects calendar

Rainbow trout

Fishing success for Rainbow Trout is generally best in the spring when thousands of fish are stocked statewide, but they can be caught year-round in most waters with a little patience and persistence. Success remains high into June and gradually declines as water temperatures increase and fish move offshore to stay cool. Fish that escaped the spring harvest return to the nearshore areas in the fall as waters cool off. Some waters may also be stocked again in the fall further boosting catch rates.
Chart showing fishing prospects throughout the calendar year


Cougar Lake
Photo by WDFW