Lakes stocked as Washington trout season opens

It may be bigger in other regions of the state, but the opening of Washington's trout season today offers the chance to land lunkers at a handful of Mid-Columbia lakes.

Washington's Department of Fish and Wildlife has stocked lakes statewide for a season opener that attracts up to 300,000 anglers, the department said. It stocks more than 19.8 million trout in lakes and streams statewide, with most stocked before the opener.

"It (the opener) is bigger on the west side of the state and in the Spokane area, but there are some good opportunities in this area," said John Easterbrooks, fish program manager for the department's south-central office.

And local anglers could find some big trout in a few lakes. The department stocked 94 lakes statewide with triploids -- sterile rainbow trout that weigh an average of 1 1/2 pounds.

In Franklin County, Dalton Lake was expected to be stocked with 393 triploids, while Powerline Pond was to receive 344, according to the department.

The family fishing pond at Columbia Park was to get 147 triploids, Fish and Wildlife said.

In Walla Walla County, Bennington Lake was expected to receive 344 triploids. Grant County lakes to receive triploids included Blue (295), Deep (98) and Park (196), according to Fish and Wildlife.

The department also planned to stock Sprague Lake with 2,165 triploids, the most of any lake in the state.

For a list of Fish and Wildlife's 2009 hatchery stocking plan by county and lake, visit the department's Web site at http://wdfw.wa.gov/fish/plants/index.htm.