Question: How does a seasoned fisherman with 50 years of fishing experience get skunked at a lake that "allegedly" was stocked only a few days ago with 20,000 trout?
Answer: He can't! The stocking report that's all over the outdoor news sites, as I'm sure was reported by WA Fish and Wildlife, is FAKE NEWS! Didn't realize even fish stocking articles could fall into this category!
I arrived at Lawrence Lake around 11:30 am today and was surprised to see only two shore fisherman with some young children fishing. Now granted, it WAS rather unpleasant weather, breezy and rainy, but with that many fish supposedly being put into the lake I expected a large gathering. Not even one boat out on the lake! I asked the fisherman if they had any luck and they said that they had been fishing for about an hour with no bites. They told me that it was pretty crowded there earlier when they arrived but that everyone had left. Still convinced that I would be able to easily put a few fish in the boat for dinner tonight I proceeded to dismount my porta bote from my truck and load up the gear. I trolled for two hours covering most of the main lake without so much as a single strike. I tried flies, spoons and spinners. NADA! My fish finder marked a total of 10 or 12 fish the whole time, far short of the 20,000 that was reported to have been planted. Could this have been a misprint? Maybe they meant 2,000! Even so I would have expected to have some action but not even a drive-by hit. Very disappointing since I did have some other options that I passed up to fish Lawrence. Even the flock of 50 to 100 cormorants that I saw there couldn't have done all those fish in that quickly! Oh well, hopefully the nice family I met as I was leaving that were putting their boat in were successful in finding a fish or two. Oh yeah! There was one father and young son that were fishing the shore with bait that managed to catch a fish right before I left. Always happy to see a young 5 year old bring in a trout, even a 10 incher puts a big grin on their faces! Hopefully they were successful in taking home a few more.
Next week, hopefully I will make it to Merwin, been waiting all winter to put a few kokes in the freezer. If you are thinking about trying Lawrence I would suggest you bypass it for some of the other lakes that are reported to have been stocked, I'm pretty sure that you will be glad you did!
Tight lines my fishing friends!
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