Toad Lake

One of the county's four rainbow trout stocked lakes, Toad is always a good producer for its still- and troll-fishing faithful.

Nestled in an out-of-the-way notch northeast of Bellingham, Toad gets little press as an angling hotspot, which is the way its angling faithful like it. Its cozy confines easily accommodate 50 to 80 troller boats and bank-bound anglers will find another scarce commodity: public dock fishing space.

Be aware that there is no public access on the southwest shore down Pebble Beach Road in Emerald Lake Estates . Trespassers there could be cited.

Season: fourth Saturday in April to Oct. 31.

Angler amenities: a floating dock and some bank slots at the WDFW access area.

Surface area: 29 acres.

Stocking for 2008: 5,500 rainbows plus kokanee fry in 2005.

In the catch: hatchery rainbows with the occasional carryover and a few kokanee.

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

Boat launch: state fish and wildlife department – gravel, suited for car-toppers and small, trailered craft. There is limited maneuvering space. By county ordinance, gas motors are not allowed.

Getting there: Toad's sole public access is at the end of Toad Lake Road, up from Academy Street off North Shore Drive. The parking area fills quickly and late–comer vehicles spill over well down the narrow gravel entry road.