Fishing season opens April 27, prospects continue

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Dennis Clay

The general lowland lake fishing opener is a week from this Saturday, April 27.

There is a fishing rule/regulation which can be misunderstood. Fish and Wildlife enforcement officers tell me they write tickets for anglers breaking this one quite often.

“Where use of bait is prohibited, or where lures or flies are used voluntarily, Game Fish may be caught and released until the daily limit is retained.”

An angler fishing Park Lake can catch and release trout all day long, if using flies or lures.

The second part of this rule/regulation is: “When fishing with bait, all trout equal to or greater than the minimum size are counted as part of the daily limit whether kept or released.”

The Park Lake angler is fishing with worms. She catches a trout six-inches long. It is deemed too short, so she releases it. According to the rule above, this trout counts as the first of her five-fish limit.

The angler keeps two more trout while using bait. She now has three of her five-fish limit. She switches to using a flyrod and flies.

The angler now can catch and release trout for the rest of the day or until two more trout are retained.

Last of the prospects

Jameson and Wapato:

It is unusual to include two lakes in a prospect, especially two lakes so far apart. The biologist for this area included them together, so it is presented to you in this manner. Jameson Lake is popular with Columbia Basin Anglers. Today we backtrack a bit, then continue. Read on.

The trout fisheries at these lakes are primarily driven off of fry/fingerling plants of at least 100,000 fish that are stocked in the spring of the previous year.

These plants should continue to yield an abundant crop of good looking “catchable” size fish. Thus, anglers can expect to see the bulk of their catches comprised of these fish.

In addition, both of these lakes received plants of at least 5,000 catchable sized Rainbow last fall, which should yield a few larger “carry over” sized trout in the creel. Finally, each of these lakes will receive at least 4,000 catchables and 250 jumbos this spring before the opener.

Anglers lucky enough to have caught a fish with a statewide derby tag can expect it to a Jumbo-sized rainbow trout. These tags can be redeemed for various prizes at participating merchants.

All in all, anglers should expect to experience a fishery that provides a wide size range of quality Rainbow trout from catchable size on up to fish in the two-pound range.

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