Opinion Columns & Blogs

Summer lake and stream seasons close at the end of October

Just a reminder that the end of October brings the seasonal closure of many personal use lake and stream angling opportunities.

In Washington all lakes, reservoirs and ponds are open 365 days a year unless a special regulation shortens their individual seasons.

Among Whatcom County waters set to close are lakes Silver, Padden, Toad and Cain. These are lakes stocked with bigger hatchery-reared rainbow trout in early spring.

Also on the shutdown list in the county are Lake Whatcom, with its prodigious native kokanee population and Ross Lake, Seattle City Light's long reservoir in the North Cascades, which now holds trophy wild rainbows.

Seasonal prohibitions on fishing afloat are now in effect on Fazon, Terrell and Tennant lakes for the waterfowl season as well.

The complexion of stream fishing also changes with Halloween's arrival.

Smaller streams around the state that are opened for summer fishing close Thursday, Oct. 31. Here in Whatcom County and the Puget Sound basin streams affected are the ones named as being open for trout and gamefish. The majority of step-across sized creeks in watersheds around the Salish Sea are now closed year-around.

Mainstems reaches such as the Nooksack, lower North and South forks do stay open through the end of January for hatchery steelhead.

In the saltchuck, Marine Area 7 our local waters off Whatcom County and throughout the San Juans, close for the month of November reopening the first of December for the winter blackmouth season.

In the 2013-14 Fish Washington pamphlet look for Western Washington special lake regulations between pages 52 and 68.

Puget Sound stream special regulations applying to Whatcom and Skagit County watercourses open for angling are found on pages 23 to 25.