photo courtesy of WDFW

Lowland Lake Trout fishing season is a big thing in Washington State. Many of the lakes are stocked a week or so prior with hatchery fish.

The alarm clock goes off at 5:15am. I roll over and think to myself, “It’s a Saturday, why on earth am I awake this early when I don’t have to work?” and then I remember that it’s opening day for fishing season.  

My family has made it a tradition every year to go out in our little 13ft aluminum boat and troll for Rainbow Trout in Silver Lake. We get up early and head to the lake with our raspberry filled powdered donuts, thermoses full of hot coffee, and our fishing poles.  Everyone has their pole with their favorite lure on it. This year I bought myself a brand new pole (Pink!), and my lure of choice was a bronze Rooster Tail with a silver spoon and some purple and silver sparkles on it.


We put our poles in the water and started off across the lake. Within 10 minutes, my dad had the first fish on.  He reeled it in, put it into the basket, dropped his line, and then BAM! another bite on his line. I started to think my Rooster Tail was a poor choice as my dad quickly began to out fish me.

Patiently waiting with my pole in the water, I poured myself a cup of coffee. It seemed like the fish knew I wasn’t paying full attention and in that moment decided to bite.  I fumbled to set down my coffee, and in my excitement to set the hook I pulled it right out of his mouth. I was reminded by my dad, “This isn’t Salmon fishing Kati.”  I let a little more line out and waited.

After what felt like an eternity (but in reality was more like 15 minutes), I felt a little nibble. I reeled in slowly to keep the lure spinning and waited for the second hit. Sure enough he came back for more. I gently set the hook and began reeling him in. There’s nothing that compares to pulling in your first rainbow of the season.

They wiggle and flop around so much that it’s hard to get a hold of them to take to hook out. This guy couldnt even hold still for the photo.

We limited out fairly quickly, packed up the fish and the boat, and were back at the house by 9am, sleepy eyed and ready for a nap. Another successful opening morning under our belts.



Kati Schmidt is a self-proclaimed “Hipneck”, blending her roots as a country girl with her life in the big city of Bellingham. She can often be found skiing at Mt. Baker, gardening, deer hunting, and hiking with her Rat Terrier Remington.

Originally Published: Apr 28, 2014