Mark the calendar (if the last Saturday of April is not tattooed onto your brain).
The general trout season will open Saturday, April 29. While most of the state is open to fishing year-around, waters in the Sierra Nevada and northern parts of the state are closed late fall through early spring and Southern California anglers flock to Inyo and Mono counties for this opening day each year. For those of you who don’t have this date etched into your brain, this is your reminder.
Some tidbits: there are five major fishing derbies opening weekend: the Fishmas Day Celebration at Tom’s Place, Crowley Lake’s Big Fish Contest, Round-up at Convict Lake, Monster Trout Contest in the June Lake Loop and Western Outdoor News 395 Big Fish Sierra Trout Opener. Some are free, some have entry fees. All give bragging rights to anglers catching big fish.
And there will be big fish.
The Department of Fish and Wildlife will stock Inyo and Mono counties with over 650,000 pounds of trout this fishing season, with a sizable chunk of those planted for opening weekend, including a lot of surplus brood stock trout. Trout from private hatcheries are also planted by Mono County, a total of 24,400 pounds for the season, including 3,200 pounds of fish from 6 to 9 pounds put in for opening weekend. There are other privately-funding trout plants throughout the region, including the Bridgeport Fish Enhancement Foundation and a similar group for the Bishop Creek drainage.
Opening day less than two weeks away.
June Lake Loop photo