Start of lowland lakes trout season one of many opening days in April

rufus woods 2008


Start of lowland lakes trout season one of many opening days in April

For many anglers, “opening day” is synonymous with the start of the lowland lakes trout-fishing season, which gets under way April 23 this year. Hundreds of thousands of Washingtonians typically descend on trout-stocked lakes to kick off the state’s biggest outdoor event.

To prepare for the upcoming season, hatchery crews from the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) have been working since last year to stock millions of fish in hundreds of lakes throughout the state. Anglers can find how many went where at

But anglers – and hunters, too – are also looking forward to a variety of other “opening days” this month for outdoor adventures, including:

  • Columbia Basin lake fishing: Dozens of lakes in the Columbia Basin open to fishing April 1.
  • Razor clam digs: A 10-day razor clam dig is tentatively scheduled to start April 3 on various ocean beaches. For details, see WDFW’s razor clam webpage at
  • Spring turkey hunt: The general spring turkey hunt opens April 15 for hunters of all ages and runs throughMay 31. See WDFW’s Washington Wild Turkey Spring Season pamphlet at for more information.
  • Lingcod fishing: Anglers can fish for lingcod beginning April 16 in the Neah Bay area (Marine Area 4).

For most people, a valid 2016-17 fishing or hunting license will be required to participate in those activities after March 31, when all 2015-16 licenses expire. The exception is young people under age 15, who can fish for free. Licenses and permits are available online (, by phone (1-866-246-9453) and from sporting goods stores and other retail license dealers around the state.

More information about outdoor activities coming up this month is available in the Weekender Regional Reports at These reports are updated throughout the month to provide current information about recreational opportunities around the state.