Tourism & Travel in Kittitas County | Central Washington Outdoor

Fishing in Central Washington


Fishing spots in Kittitas County are plentiful and waiting to be discovered on your next getaway. Our location in Central Washington is near many water bodies - many of which are accessible for anglers of many types - whether they prefer shore fishing, fly fishing, or boat fishing!

Alpine Lakes Wilderness
Ellensburg, WA 98926
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The Alpine Lakes wilderness area is comprised of 394,000 acres in the state of Washington's rugged Central Cascades region. The area is home to more than 615 miles of hiking trails that wind their way around the region's numerous alpine lakes. There are plenty of opportunities for outdoor adventure with high lake trout fishing one of the region's premier attractions.

There are more than 1,600 alpine lakes, also known as high lakes, in western Washington. There are at least 950 additional alpine lakes located east of the Cascade Mountains. The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife estimates that more than 100,000 anglers visit these lakes each year.

Some of Washington's alpine lakes have self-sustaining trout populations. The state Department of Fish and Wildlife maintains an active, rotating stocking program for the lakes. Some lakes are stocked annually while some others are stocked every 2 or 3 years. Some lakes only are stocked once in a decade while other lakes are intentionally left barren.

The U.S. Forest and National Park Service advocates the practice of catch-and-release fishing in Washington's alpine lakes. This involves keeping only those fish that will be cooked and eaten that day, and releasing all others back into the wild.

Fish that are native to the alpine lakes may include brown trout, mackinaw and bull trout. Commonly stocked varieties of fish include rainbow trout, cutthroat trout and eastern brook trout. In some instances, lakes may be stocked with golden trout, Montana black-spot trout or Atlantic salmon.



Brazda's Fly Fishing
1130 Eagles Rest Rd
Ellensburg, WA 98926
Call: (253) 307-3210
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Welcome to Brazda's Fly Fishing, Washington's premier fly fishing guide service specializing in trout, salmon and steelhead fly fishing. We operate year-round and offer full service guided trips throughout Washington State including the Olympic Peninsula, Methow River, Klickitat River, Naches River, Washington's only Blue Ribbon trout fishery, the Yakima River. We also offer hosted trips to Baja Mexico and the Yucatan Peninsula that include fully hosted accommodations and local guides providing you with all of the best locations and services while on your fishing vacation!


Cle Elum Lake
Cle Elum, WA 98922
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Cle Elum Dam and Lake, of the Yakima Project, are on the Cle Elum River 8 miles northwest of Cle Elum, Washington. Cle Elum, Kachess, and Keechelus reservoirs are in the Wenatchee National Forest. Camping, swimming, boating, picnicking, and fishing are available at all three reservoirs especially in the streams below the dams. Available fish species are lake trout, kokanee, and rainbow trout.


Columbia River
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It flows for more than 1,200 miles, from the base of the Canadian Rockies in southeastern British Columbia to the Pacific Ocean at Astoria, Oregon, and Ilwaco, Washington. Although humans have lived along the river for more than 10,000 years, modern engineering in the 19th and 20th centuries has dramatically altered the Columbia. Some scientists believe that today the river is environmentally threatened and that drastic action should be taken to reverse the changes made to the Columbia during the last 150 years.


Cooper Lake
Cle Elum, WA 98922
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Fishing is open year around on Cooper Lake. Cooper is a consistent producer of brook trout and rainbows measuring seven to 10 inches long. Also, brown trout in the 1 to 3 pound range have been caught in recent years. Small kokanee and cutthroat are also taken. A boat launch is available, but all motors are prohibited by county ordinance.

This lake is 3 1/2 miles northwest of Salmon-La-Sac and is accessible by Forest Service road from the upper Cle Elum River. Take I-90 to Cle Elum and turn north on Highway 903. Drive three miles past the north end of Lake Cle Elum and turn west (left) on Forest Service Road 46. Follow it about five miles to Forest Service Road 4616, turn north (right), and follow the road along the north side of Cooper Lake.



Crow Creek Guide Services
50 No 245 Rd
Cle Elum, WA 98922
Call: (509) 260-0087
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Crow Creek is a home grown fly fishing outfitter.


Ellensburg Angler
32 S Thorp HWY
Ellensburg, WA 98926
Call: (509) 607−1804
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We are your premier Orvis-endorsed fly fishing outfitter for the Yakima River, Naches River, and Rocky Ford Spring Creek in central Washington. Our patient, friendly guide staff will always strive to give you the fishing experience of a lifetime regardless of age or skill level. Our guides have a passion for the sport that is hard to deny. We hope you will consider us for your next fly fishing outing!


Fiorito Ponds
Ellensburg, WA 98926
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These two lakes alongside I-82 between Ellensburg and Yakima provide some good, easy-access fishing throughout much of the year. Most fish from the bank, but boat fishing is allowed. However, no gas-powered motors are allowed. Rainbows are mostly caught, but often hatchery fish are planted in one or both lakes. An occasional brown trout is also caught. Year-round open fishing on these lakes. Fishing should be good for eight to 14 inch rainbow trout, with some brown trout available. Black crappie and yellow perch may also be caught from time to time.

About three miles southeast of Ellensburg, alongside I-82, with access via Thrall Road Drive up #6 road until you reach the public access fishing sign.



Keechelus Lake
Snoqulamie Pass
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Year-round open season. Fishing here can be very good at times, primarily in May and June, for eight- to 12-inch kokanee. Burbot are also available. Kokanee and trout limits are the same as in Kachess. The lake is closed to fishing for bull trout. Keechelus gets very light fishing pressure, with poor boat launching after the reservoir is drawn down.

Three miles southeast of Snoqualmie Pass, along the south side of I-90. Take the Hyak exit from I-90. Take Forest Service Road #9070, following it to the northwest corner of the lake and the boat ramp. To reach the southwest corner of the lake, turn south off I-90 at Crystal Springs (Exit 62). Turn west on Forest Service Road #5480 and follow it two miles to the lake. If you want to fish the east side of Keechelus, stay on I-90 to where the freeway parallels the shoreline and look for wide highway shoulders where there's ample room to pull over and park.



Lake Cle Elum
Wenatchee National Forest 803 West 2nd Street
Cle Elum, WA 98922
Call: 509-852-1100
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Cle Elum Dam and Lake, of the Yakima Project, are on the Cle Elum River 8 miles northwest of Cle Elum, Washington. Cle Elum, Kachess, and Keechelus reservoirs are in the Wenatchee National Forest. Camping, swimming, boating, picnicking, and fishing are available at all three reservoirs especially in the streams below the dams. Available fish species are lake trout, kokanee, and rainbow trout. Take I-90 to Cle Elum and turn north on Highway 903.


Lavender Lake
Roslyn, WA 98941
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Open year around to fishing. The lake is only a few acres in size but big in popularity with Kittitas County anglers and others who happen by on I-90 and stop to try their luck. A generous spring plants of hatchery rainbows mean the best angling action occurs from May to early July. Expect good fishing for rainbow trout. Disability access is available.

Three miles east of Lake Easton State Park, near the north side of I-90. Take I-90 to the West Nelson Siding Road exit and turn north. The lake is just north of the interchange.



Lost Lake
Ellensburg, WA 98926
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Fishing open year around. Small kokanee and brook trout provide most of the action. Brookies average nine inches, but larger rainbow trout are stocked each year. The daily limit is five trout, with no more than one over 14 inches.

Take the Hyak exit from I-90. Take Forest Service Road #9070, following it to the northwest corner of the lake and the boat ramp. To reach the southwest corner of the lake, turn south off I-90 at Crystal Springs (Exit 62). Turn west on Forest Service Road #5480 and follow it two miles to Lake Keechelus. You'll find this lake about a mile west of Keechelus Lake.



Manastash Lake
Ellensburg, WA 98926
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Year-round open fishing season. A consistent producer of 8 to 14 inch eastern brook trout, but heavy algae blooms in mid-summer can make fishing tough. This high-country lake (5000 feet elevation) is usually accessible to four-wheel drive vehicles by late May. It's a long, rough trip just to fish for pan-size brook trout here, but this 24-acre lake nestled among the pine-covered mountains of southwestern Kittitas County is a worthwhile reward for your effort. Small lures from the bank is the best approach, or wade out far enough to give you back-casting room but the bottom is muddy. June is the best month to fish here, but anglers find decent success all summer.

Follow Umptantum Road which turns off of Main Street at McDonalds Restaurant. Take a right on Manastash Road and head west into the canyon. The trailhead is about nineteen miles west of Ellensburg.



Mattoon Lake
I-90, Ellensburg, WA 98926
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Mattoon Lake is located just on the outskirts of Ellensburg. Open season is year-round. This lake offers good fishing for 8 to 14 inch rainbow trout. Larger rainbows are planted each year. Also brood stock rainbows in the 6 to 12 pound range are stocked in late fall. Mattoon offers a good bank fishing opportunity for those who do not have boats, although the lake gets quite weedy during the summer months. Boats with internal combustion engines are prohibited. This is a great place to take the family for a fun fishing. Disabled access available.

Located outside of Ellensburg. The lake just off of Umptantum Road about a half mile from Main Street in Ellensburg. Umptantum turns off of Main Street at McDonalds Restaurant.



Red's Fly Shop
14706 Hwy. 821 Near Mile Marker 15
Ellensburg, WA 98926
Call: 509-933-2300
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Red's Philosophy on Business:
We are old fashioned. Take care of the fish, take care of the customer, and both of these will take care of us.  You can count on Red's to lead the way in customer service and in conservation on our local waters.  Thank you for your support!



Taneum Creek
Ellensburg, WA 98926
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Taneum Creek is a small stream located just 10 miles north of Ellensburg, near Thorp. Fishermen can find a variety of fish including pink salmon, steelhead trout and white catfish here. This creek offers fair fishing from June through August for rainbow and cutthroat. Selective gear rules are in effect. Open season June 1st through October 31st.


Teanaway River
Cle Elum, WA 98922
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Teanaway River is a beautiful stream located just 5 miles south east of Cle Elum. Fishermen will find a variety of fish including trout, channel catfish, and largemouth bass. The river is fair for rainbow trout from June through August. Cutthroat can be found in the upper reaches. Selective gear rules are in effect, including the North Fork. This stream and its tributaries are closed to fishing for bull trout, salmon and steelhead. Open season is June 1st through October 31st.



Troutwater Fly Shop
1134 East First St.
Cle Elum, WA 98922
Call: (509) 674-2144
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The most experienced and professional Guide Service & Fly Shop in Eastern Washington. Troutwater provides guided fly fishing trips for trout on the Yakima and Methow rivers, as well as steelhead trips on the Methow, Klickitat and Grande Ronde rivers. They guarantee your experience with them!

Troutwater has a fly shop in Cle Elum, Washington. They offer a full range of fly fishing supplies and apparel. Troutwater Outfitters hosts global destination trips.


Worley Bugger Fly Co
1713 South Canyon Road
Ellensburg, WA 98926
Call: (509) 926-2033
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Worley Bugger Fly Co, is a Professional Fly Fishing Outfitter and operate on a year a round basis from their brick & mortar, Pro Shop in Ellensburg, Washington, the heart of the Yakima River Valley. For over two decades now, WBFC has set the standard in delivering the highest quality fly fishing adventures in Central Washington. Their Professional Guide Team, is comprised of a small group, of highly qualified indivduals with decades of fly fishing experience. Their superior, pro shop customer service is unparalleled with a staff of friendly, knowledageable, high skilled fly fishing personnel, ready to assist you with any questions you have.


Yakima River
Ellensburg, WA 98926
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The Yakima above Roza Dam is widely considered the best trout fishing rivers in Washington. The best catches are in March, September and October for wild rainbows averaging 11 inches or more. Larger rainbows in the 13 to 16 inch range are not uncommon. Fly fishing is especially good in September and October, although fished year around. Also available are 8 to 16 inch whitefish in January and February. The river is open year-round between Roza and Easton Dams, but catch-and-release only and with selective gear rules. The entire river, including tributaries, are closed to fishing for bull trout and steelhead.

Many different fishing rules apply throughout the entire reach of the Yakima River. It would be wise to check the latest regulations pamphlet for details. Rules are enforced! There are many access points along the Yakima River from the high lakes to the canyon. They are all worth exploring!







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KITTITAS COUNTY CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

A Land of Contrasts
From the mighty Columbia River to the snow-capped Cascade Mountains, Kittitas County is a premier destination for outdoor adventure, sunshine, and unique cultural offerings.
Find out more at one of our Visitor Centers:




Ellensburg, WA
609 N. Main St, Ellensburg
(888) 925-2204

Cle Elum, WA
312 W. 1st Street, Cle Elum
(509) 674-6880






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