Approximately 2,000 rainbow trout have joined what remains of 3,000 others released at Cane Creek Park in December through the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency’s statewide winter trout stocking program.
“It’s a good opportunity to get outside and go fishing, especially during these unseasonably warm temperatures,” Dennis Woolbright, Cane Creek Park manager, said.
TWRA streams manager Travis Scott and streams biologist Jack Swearengin arrived Jan. 18 to release the new trout into the lake, where they can survive until late May or early June.
“We stock areas where it’s normally too hot most of the year for trout to live,” Scott said.
That means locals have just a few months to take advantage of trout fishing opportunities.
“We are fortunate to have this program so close by so that people from Cookeville and surrounding areas don’t have to travel long distances to fish for them,” Woolbright said. “All they need is a sportsman’s license or a regular hunting and fishing license with a trout stamp.”
The trout are 7-10 inches long, and the daily creel limit is seven per fisherman. Children 12 and under may fish without a license.
Cane Creek Park is open daily from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. at 201 C C Camp Road in Cookeville. Anyone wishing to fish may do so from the bank or a boat with a trolling motor or paddles.
TWRA’s winter trout stocking program, which began in 1999 in Nashville and has expanded to 34 locations across the state, was designed to provide close-to-home trout fishing opportunities in urban areas. Cane Creek Park has benefited from the program for a decade.
TWRA planned to release approximately 90,000 rainbow trout into Tennessee waters December through March. The idea is that they’ll be harvested.
“We want people to take them home and enjoy them,” Swearengin said.
Scott added, “A lot of people enjoy fishing for trout. They can be fairly aggressive and easy to catch, while your warm water species like bass or bluegill are not as active in the winter.”
To learn more about Cane Creek Park, call Cookeville Leisure Services at 520-4386.