What comes to mind when you think about fishing? Patience, relaxation, challenge, and memories are a few words often associated with fishing. You will find all that and a sense of stewardship, conservation, and preservation on this page. We want you to have an enjoyable time during your visit, and for those who come after you to fish. Take some time to explore, learn what the park has to offer and learn your responsibilities before casting a line or flicking a fly into the water.
A Fishing License from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife is needed for anyone age 16 years or older to fish in the park. Follow this link to find out more about different types of licenses and specific regulations California Department of Fish and Wildlife. The nearest location to obtain a fishing license is Rite Aid at 1801 Eureka Way, Redding, CA.
Fishing regulations at Whiskeytown National Recreation Area are established by the state of California. Some pertinent regulations are as follows:
Trout and salmon species may only be fished for during daylight hours; defined as one hour before sunrise until one hour after sunset.
Fish Consumption Advisories in National Park WatersThe 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.
Fish is part of a healthy balanced diet, but eating wild fish caught in park waters is not risk free. Parks are “islands”, but the much larger “ocean” that surrounds them affects the natural resources inside a park. Studies have shown that some fish within Whiskeytown Lake have elevated levels of mercury, most likely as a result of historic mining activities. Due to the elevated mercury levels, the following recommendations have been made by the California Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA):
Aquatic Invasive Species
Imagine your favorite fishing spot and the wonderful memories. Things may look fine but underneath the surface there is a serious threat. Everything you remembered is now cemented together in a sharp, smelly mess. Invaders have wiped out the fish species you used to catch.
How You Can Help – Stop Aquatic Hitchhikers
To prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species, people launching vessels at any body of water are subject to watercraft inspections and are strongly encouraged to clean, drain and dry their motorized and non-motorized boats, including personal watercraft, and any equipment that comes into contact with the water before and after recreating.
Frequently Asked Questions for Fishing at Whiskeytown NRAFollow this link to download a copy of Fishing - Frequently Asked Questions
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.
Last updated: December 18, 2020