With just under two months to go until spring's statewide fishing main event, Saturday, April 27, an undercard bout begins with a Friday, March 1, start of trout angling on a number of eastside waters.
Included on the list of March 1 waters are lakes from the Quincy-George area east to Spokane vicinity and southeast to Dayton and Pomeroy.
Hardy hook and line enthusiasts may still find the last vestiges of winter on some, but these trout-dedicated lakes seldom fail to pique the interest of even their first day fishers.
STEELHEADING FURTHER AFIELD
Now that Puget Sound rivers have closed for anglers seeking steelhead, road trips also are the order of the day with angling openings elsewhere this time of year offering both wild as well as hatchery sea-run rainbows.
Hatchery-origin versions of the so-called summer-run forms of this species homing on streams in the Okanogan and Blue mountains are likely to remain fair game until the end of the month, while west of the Cascades a number of lower Columbia and coastal streams host 'fishable' wild and cultured strains of steelhead known as winter-runs that remain on the westside spring catch list.
PIKE CAMPAIGN ON AGAIN
State and tribal biologists this month will resume their effort to stem the tide of invading northern pike in the lower Pend Oreille River. These toothsome aquatic predators are intruding into Washington waters by way of the Spokane River as well.
State managers aim to take the battle to pike in these locales and stymie their further progress into the Columbia, where it's anticipated they would do substantial damage to salmon and steelhead populations.
For more about March angling options plus additional fishing and hunting news, read Sunday's Outdoors Column.
Doug Huddle, the Bellingham Herald's outdoors correspondent, since 1983, has written a weekly fishing and hunting column that now appears Sundays. Read his blog and contact him at http://pblogs.belinghamherald.com/outdoors.