Whether rod and reel fishing from shore or fly-fishing from a float-tube, Lassen Volcanic National Park has plenty of opportunities to land the big one. Trout have not been stocked in the park since the 1980s, but a healthy population of these feisty fish still remain in many lakes and streams. Manzanita Lake is the most popular fishing destination in the park and is limited to catch and release with a single, barbless hook and artificial lure.
Where to Fish
Manzanita and Butte Lake offer the easiest access to fishing in the park. Most lakes and creeks in the park are host to brush including willow and alder. Fishing by non-motorized boat is a good way to avoid snagging a bush; although most lakes also have at least small sections of open areas that offer space for casting.
Lakes with Trout Species
Butte Lake, Snag Lake, and Horseshoe Lake are all popular fishing destinations in the park with populations of rainbow, brown, and brook trout. Trout populations are also confirmed at Ridge, Terrace, Summit, Snag, and Crystal Lakes. Manzanita Lake holds a fair number of rainbow and brown trout and is rated as a blue ribbon fly fishery by the state of California Department of Fish and Game. Juniper Lake is not a great lake to fish, as it does not contain any game species.
Creeks with Fish
Kings Creek and Grassy Swale Creek both have populations of brook trout. Trout populations are also confirmed in North Fork Bailey, North Arm Rice, Hat, Hot Springs, and Summit Creeks.
Hat Creek originates from a spring in Lassen Volcanic National Park and flows north to its terminus in Lake Britton. Fishing in the creek within the park is not ideal due to heavy brush and limited road access. Outside of the park, planting occurs at several locations along the creek throughout the season. This includes sites directly north of the park on Highway 89, between Hat Creek and Old Station. View fishing and planting locations on the California Department of Fish and Wildlife's Fishing Guide interactive map.
Please review all fishing regulations prior to fishing in the park. A few key regulations to know:
Tips and Best Practices:
Clean. Drain. Dry.
Aquatic invasive species, such as zebra or quagga mussels, are a serious ecological threat to the Lassen ecosystem. Any activities that come in contact with any body of water have the potential to spread non-native plants, pathogens, and other invasive species among water bodies. Follow these steps every time you come in contact with any body of water:
Fish Consumption Advisories in National Park Waters
The Environmental Protection Agency, states, territories, and tribes provide advice on fish and shellfish caught in the waters in their jurisdiction to help people make informed decisions about eating fish. Advisories are recommendations to limit your consumption of, or avoid eating entirely, certain species of fish or shellfish from specific bodies of water due to chemical or biological contamination.
Fishing Throughout the National Park Service
We invite you to visit the Fish and Fishing website for more information about fish and fishing in the National Park Service. You will learn about conservation, different fish species, and parks that offer fishing.
Stream Water Quality and Aquatic Communities
Streams are significant and productive resources that are influenced by activities both inside and outside parks boundaries. Because healthy streams are vital to park landscapes and ecosystems, the National Park Service samples physical, biological, and chemical parameters. These varied parameters allow us to measure change over time and across the landscape and ultimately detect trends and assess impacts.
Last updated: April 19, 2021