Puget Sound, Strait of Juan de Fuca, San Juan Islands, the ocean or a year-round lake or open stretch of river — what it all boils down to this week for anglers is how far you want to go and what kind of fish you want.
State Fish and Wildlife continues to plant many local year-round lakes with trout to provide anglers with early spring fishing opportunities.
“The fish stocked in year-round lakes were already starting to bite, and definitely worth your time to get out there now,” said Justin Spinelli, a state Fish and Wildlife biologist for Region Four, which covers Island, King, Snohomish, Whatcom and Skagit counties. “We’ve been very busy planting lakes the past few weeks.”
“The spring catchable-sized trout (usually averaging 10 to 12 inches) plants in Region 4 will total 458,000, and hopefully little bit more than that will actually go into the lakes,” Spinelli said.
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King County lakes recently planted were Angle, Beaver, Green, Alice, Meridian, Sawyer and Rattlesnake.
The list of planted lakes in Snohomish County is extensive, and includes Ballinger, Blackmans, Cassidy, Chain, Flowing, Gissburg, Ketchum, Loma, Shoecraft, Lost (Devil’s Lake), Martha (Warm Beach), Panther, Silver and Tye. In Island County, Cranberry was also planted.
In Pierce County soak a line at Bonney, Bradley, Whitman, and Harts. In Mason County, try Island, Lost, and Spencer. In Kitsap County, look for active trout at Island, and in Thurston County go to Offutt and St. Clair.
Marine salmon fishing continues to provide fair to good action for hatchery chinook.
Windy conditions this past Saturday during the Anacortes Salmon Derby didn’t stop 1,100 anglers who weighed in a total of 156 hatchery chinook that were caught throughout the San Juan Islands. The winner of the $15,000 first-place prize was Bill Robillard of Anacortes, who caught a 24.62-pound chinook. Second went to Mike Bredeson of Everson with a 20.24-pound fish, and third was Steve Martin of Bellingham with an 18.72-pound fish.
Proceeds from the derby fund scholarships.
Other locations where action was decent include Port Angeles, Freshwater Bay, Sekiu, Hood Canal, Port Townsend, Point No Point, Double Bluff off the south side of Whidbey Island, Pilot Point, and Possession Bar.
Salmon fishing is open from Sekiu to Port Angeles until April 10; San Juan Islands, Hood Canal, and south-central and southern Puget Sound through April 30; and northern Puget Sound through April 15.