Although the state of Washington is more celebrated for its western Pacific shores and national parks, there is an abundance of incredible eastern Washington locales available for outdoor activities. Of the many reasons to come to Washington, fishing is a perennial favorite. Mild temperatures year-round and annual plants from local fishing hatcheries keep salmon, trout, sturgeon and bass populations high.
Eastern Washington is home to Snake River, which offers some of America's best salmon and trout fishing. Salmon and trout both come from the family Salmonid; trout are sedentary with 12 or fewer rays on the anal fin, whereas salmon are migratory and have 13 or more rays on the anal fin. Snake River is also home to larger schools of white sturgeon and smallmouth bass. Snake River travels up the bottom of the Idaho-Washington border until Clarkston, Washington, where it receives Idaho's Clearwater River as a tributary. From Clarkston, the Snake River travels west until it is received as a tributary by the Columbia River at Pasco, Washington. Open season on Snake River starts Sept. 1 and lasts until Oct. 15 every year.
Williams Lake in Spokane County covers an area totaling 319 acres. The lake was rehabilitated in 1995 for fishing use. Annual planting of rainbow trout fry keep supplies of rainbow trout fresh and abundant. Fishermen reports include cutthroat trout and silver salmon as other catches. Public access to Williams Lake is available mostly along the northwest shore, 12 miles southwest of Cheney, Washington.
Situated in the northern part of Douglas County, Grimes offers an angling experience similar to Lake Lenore in northwest Washington. Lahontan cutthroat is the most abundant species of fish available in Grimes Lake. Open season on Grimes Lake starts July 1 and ends Aug. 31. Grimes Lake is about nine miles south of Mansfield, Washington. Fishing on Grimes Lake is characterized as plentiful, isolated and quiet.
Banks Lake, located in Grant County, was created in 1951 when the Grand Coulee Dam was installed on the Columbia River. Banks Lake offers 90 miles of shoreline surrounding a 27,000-acre lake. Smallmouth bass fishing increases when the water starts to warm between the end of March and the beginning of April. In May, largemouth bass populations begin to spike. Submerged roadbeds created before the Grand Coulee Dam was installed are noted bass hotspots in Banks Lake. Banks Lake hosts the annual Washington State BASS Federation Jamboree and Junior Bassmaster Championship. Banks Lake is located about 15 miles southwest of the Coulee Dam on Route 155.
Article Written By Steve Brachmann
Steve Brachmann has been working professionally as a freelance writer since 2007. Hailing from Angola, N.Y., his work has been published in "The Buffalo News," SUNY-Fredonia's "The Leader" and on various websites. He is currently attending the State University of New York-Fredonia to earn a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in acting with a communication minor.