Take a kid fishing and help them bag colorful rainbow trout for free during the 12th annual “Trails to Trout” fishing days held in January at The Tyler Nature Center. The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) is stocking 2,000 rainbow trout at the pond for adult and child team fishing from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Jan. 6 and 13.
There is no registration required and no need to purchase a fishing license – all anglers need to bring is fishing equipment and bait. The East Texas Woods and Waters Foundation (ETWWF) and TPWD will provide the rest, including staff on-hand to assist beginner fishing duos and limited fishing equipment for those who need it on a first-come, first-served basis.
“Anglers will have the choice of releasing their catch or keeping up to a limit of five [rainbow trout] per person to take home,” said Spencer Dumont, East Texas Regional Fisheries Director. “We also have fish-cleaning facilities and ice available courtesy of the East Texas Woods and Waters Foundation.”
In addition to the daily bag limit of five rainbow trout, anglers can also keep up to one channel catfish per day.
After a day of fishing at the pond head over to the nearby outdoor hiking trails to complete the great outdoors experience.
Recommended Equipment: Each child will need a light-action rod and reel combination with small fishing hooks, light line 12-pound test or less, small bobbers (optional), and small split shot. For bait, bring salmon eggs, whole kernel corn, marshmallows, small worms or prepared trout bait (Berkley PowerBait Hatchery Formula Chews or similar). Small rooster-tail spinners work well. If you intend to keep trout, make sure to pack a stringer or small cooler.
How to get there: From ESE Loop 323 in Tyler, go southeast on University Blvd. (Spur 248). Take a right turn on F.M. 848 (Bascom Road). Go 0.2 miles and turn right at The Nature Center gate. Park in the designated areas in the main parking area and walk to the pond using the concrete trail near the kiosk.
A complete list of trout stocking dates and locations is available at www.tpwd.texas.gov/troutstocking