Plenty of my memories are filled with the opening day of trout fishing in lowland lakes, which happens to be this coming weekend.
Just the thought of going out in a boat with my dad in the early morning hours, and then holding up a stringer full of trout on a sunny day sends excitement through my mind just thinking about it.
Those types of scenarios will be played out time and time again in the coming weeks as anglers hit their favorite lakes in search of the more than 19.8-million trout stocked in hundreds of lakes around the state.
“Looks like our trout plants in lakes have a few more fish than last year, but it is pretty similar to last year as far as numbers go,” said Jon Anderson, a state Fish and Wildlife fish manager.
Here is just a taste of what was planted:
41,429 triploid (sterile) trout – each averaging 1-1/2 pounds – being stocked this spring in 94 lakes.
69,450 two-year-old “jumbo” and surplus hatchery broodstock trout being stocked this spring in 149 lakes.
More than 7 million trout that were planted last year as 2- to 3-inch fry into 530 lakes, including most lakes opening April 25.
More than 8.5 million kokanee fry, expected to show in this year’s catch, stocked in 28 lakes.
More than 4.1 million “catchable-size” (8- to 12-inch) trout stocked this spring in 370 lowland lakes, including lakes opening April 25.
While mornings are typically the best time for action, last year that hype didn’t live up to expectation and in fact fishing was far more better as the day went on and the weather warmed up.
Success can vary from year to year, but some lakes remain consistent year in and out.
Here is how the lakes fared last opening day:
King County: Cottage, 1.3; Geneva, 2.9; Pine, 2.7; Steel, 3.8; Wilderness, 2.4; Rattlesnake, 1.9, plus lots of catch and release anglers present and water was extremely low; and Langlois, 1.9.
Snohomish: Armstrong, 2.5; Bosworth, 1.0; Ki, 3.6; Martha (Alderwood Manor), 1.5; and Howard, 4.0; Serene, 1.1; Storm, 2.4; and Stickney 0.3.
Island: Deer, 2.1; and Goss, a spot check showed two anglers had five-fish daily limits.
San Juan Island: Cascade, 4.0.
Thurston County: Clear, 0.5; Deep, 2.4; Hicks, 1.2; Long, 0.7; McIntosh, 3.2; Munn, 3.2; Pattison, 2.2; Summit, 1.3; and Ward, 1.0.
Lewis County: Fort Borst State Park Pond, 1.6; Plummer, 0.5; Carlisle, 2.3; and Mineral, 1.4.
Skamania County: Northwestern Reservoir, 3.4; Kidney, 1.3.
Klickitat County: Rowland, 2.3; Separfish, 2.2; and Horsethief, 1.0.
Whatcom: Cain, 2.3; Padden, 2.8; and Toad, 3.8.
Skagit: Erie, 3.9; Heart, 4.4; McMurray, 4.4; Silver, 2.9; and Sixteen, 4.3.
Pierce: Clear, 3.5; Ohop, 1.2; Rapjohn, 1.3; Spanaway, 1.8. Tanwax, 2.0; Silver, 2.4; Crescent, 2.1; and Carney, 0.6.
Check out my Thursday fishing column for the latest on opening day.
I’d also love to hear how things go on opening day so be sure to send me your fishing reports and any pictures you have of your day on the water.