Fishing prospects continue

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Dennis Clay

This is the third in a series of columns about the fishing prospects in Eastern Washington lakes.

Perch Lake

Another small lake in Sun Lakes State Park, Perch Lake has limited shore fishing but is ideal for someone with a small boat or float tube. Perch Lake saw surprisingly few anglers in 2018 and should contain plenty of trout for anglers in 2019. Perch Lake receives 9,200 fingerling rainbow trout each year. No opening day creel was conducted in 2018.

Pillar-Widgeon Chain: These walk-in lakes on the Columbia National Wildlife Refuge are consistent producers of quality trout, and beginning in 2019 these lakes, along with the Hampton and Teal Lakes, now open on the 4th Saturday in April. These lakes receive spring fingerling rainbow trout and are a popular destination for fly anglers looking for a quiet day on the water.

Hampton Lakes: The Hampton Lakes have fished well over recent years. Lower Hampton Lake receives more angler effort and while catch rates are somewhat lower than on Upper Hampton, the fish caught there are larger. Since the 2014 rotenone treatment of the Hampton Lakes pumpkinseed sunfish have recovered to a point where they are negatively affecting growth of fingerling rainbow trout. Beginning in 2019, the Hampton Lakes open on the 4th Saturday in April and close on Sept. 30.

Teal Lakes: The Teal Lakes, located along the Seep Lakes Road on the Columbia National Wildlife Refuge, are a popular fishery for local anglers looking to catch good size trout. Both lakes, while managed for trout, have carp, bass and sunfish as well. Consequently, fingerling growth and survival have suffered.

South Teal Lake receives little fishing pressure, likely due to abundant aquatic weed growth and limited access to most of the shoreline. Most of North Teal’s shoreline is accessible and anglers commonly catch very nice 13- to 15-inch rainbow trout all around the lake. Catch rates, on average, are lower here than on other more productive waters such as Blue and Park Lake; however, anglers can find they often have the lake to themselves, especially during the week. Beginning in 2019, the Teal Lakes open on the 4th Saturday in April and close on Sept. 30.

Jameson and Wapato lakes are not in our area, but many Columbia Basin anglers enjoy fishing them. Fish and Wildlife District 7 Fish Biologist Travis Maitland provided the following information:

Jameson and Wapato:

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

Next week: More fishing prospects.

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