Sockeye Run Drives Fishermen to Baker Lake
Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife could open Sockeye season in July, and with record numbers predicted this year, fishing enthusiasts will be flocking to Baker Lake on the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest .
While anglers contemplate between using the little pink plastic squids with flashers or traditional lures, Forest Service staff is scrambling to accommodate 100 or more anglers with boats and trailers in an already packed recreation area. Fishermen will be sharing the lake with swimmers, canoes and kayakers, while coexisting with hikers, picnickers and campers at nine campgrounds with multiple sites.
All of the Forest Service boat ramps are adjacent to campgrounds. “Anglers may arrive as early as 4:30 a.m. in the morning, but day-use hours don’t start until 8 a.m. We ask anglers to please be considerate of other forest users,” said Carol Gladsjo, public services manager for the forest.
Parking is limited. Day parking is available at four boat ramps along the lake: Kulshan Campground, Horseshoe Cove, Panorama Point and Swift Creek. Visitors can purchase parking permits at the boat ramps for $5 per day. Overnight parking permits are $8 at Horseshoe Cove and Panorama Point campgrounds and $9 at Swift Creek Campground. No other parking passes are honored. Boat launching and parking at Shannon Creek Campground are reserved for registered campers and those with car-top boats. Gladsjo advises anglers to consider visiting during the week when use is not as high.
Staff from Hoodoo Recreation Services, Forest Service, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife and Whatcom County will be in the area to assist visitors.
A map showing parking and guidelines is available at www.fs.usda.gov/goto/mbs/fishing.
For more information contact the following:
Mt. Baker Ranger District, 360-856-5700,
Camping at Hoodoo Recreation, http://hoodoo.com/,
Camping reservations at http://recreation.gov or 877-444-6777,
Puget Sound Energy recreation facilities, 360-853-8341.