Outdoors

Silver Lake

Nestled in the Cascade foothills, Silver is one of this county's premier trout waters. The county park's opening day celebration is a one-stop fishing experience with an early-morning trout derby, a pancake breakfast, row boats for rent and fishing supplies for sale for the unprepared.

It'll take a while for the sun to peek in over Black Mountain Saturday morning to warm anglers, but the fishing should be anything but cool from midnight on. Silver is the biggest of the county's hatchery stocked lakes. Even so, trollers should come prepared to plunk a while in the morning, until the crowds thin out a bit.

Season: fourth Saturday in April to Oct. 31.

Angler amenities: ample access along the park's shoreline and there is a fishing bridge. Boat rentals, some tackle sales as well as an angler's breakfast and a free trout derby opening day in the morning at the park.

Surface area: 173 acres.

Stocking for 2008: 17,000 catchable hatchery rainbows.

In the catch: hatchery rainbow trout, cutthroat trout, bass, sunfish occasionally an eastern brook trout.

Special rules: seasonal opening, otherwise statewide bag and size limits.

Boat launches: state fish and wildlife department – north-end ramp accommodates small, trailered boats. The south end Silver Lake County Park access area is carry-in only. Daily boat use restrictions.

Getting there: drive east on Mount Baker Highway to Maple Falls then north on Silver Lake Road about four miles. The county park access is at the lake's south end, and the fish and wildlife department access is off a side road at the north end.

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