Illinois 2021 Spring Trout Fishing Season Opens April 3

Rachel Torbert
Illinois 2021 Spring Trout Fishing Season Opens April 3
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – The 2021 Illinois Spring Trout Fishing Season will open Saturday, April 3 at more than 50 ponds, lakes and streams throughout the state.

An early opportunity at select trout sites – the Spring Catch-and-Release Fishing Season – will open March 20. No trout may be kept during the catch and release fishing period, but anglers can keep trout after the opening of the regular season beginning April 3.
The Illinois Catchable Trout Program is funded by those who use the program through the sale of Inland Trout Stamps. The Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) stocks more than 80,000 rainbow trout each year in bodies of water where trout fishing is permitted during the spring season. An additional 80,000 trout will be stocked for the Fall Trout Fishing Season, which begins in October.

For the 2021 spring trout season, no trout may be taken from any of the stocked sites from March 15 until the season opens at 5:00 a.m. April 3. Anyone attempting to harvest trout before the legal harvest season opening will be issued citations.

All anglers – including those who intend to release fish caught before April 3 – must have a fishing license and an Inland Trout Stamp, unless they are under the age of 16, blind or disabled, or are an Illinois resident on leave from active duty in the Armed Forces. The daily catch limit for each angler is five trout.

For more information on trout seasons and other Illinois fishing opportunities, check the website at

Illinois 2021 fishing licenses and Inland Trout Stamps are available now at IDNR license and permit locations, including many bait shops, sporting goods stores and other retail outlets. For a list of locations, check the IDNR website at

Fishing licenses and trout stamps also can be purchased online.  Find the link on the IDNR website at

For information about all site regulations, anglers should contact individual sites that will be stocked with catchable-size trout.  Not all sites open at 5:00 a.m. on opening day. Anglers are reminded to check the opening time of their favorite sites prior to the open date.

UPDATE:  Forest Preserve District of Cook County locations will have a later opening date for spring trout season; check the FPDCC website at for details on trout season at Axehead, Belleau, Sag Quarry East, Horsetail and Green lakes.

The locations that will be open for the spring trout season are listed below:

2021 Illinois Spring Trout Locations
(** Denotes sites open for Catch-and-Release Early Spring Season fishing)

North --- Boone County --- Mill Race Ponds, Belvidere
North --- Bureau County --- Hennepin Canal Parkway
North --- Cook County --- Wolf Lake at William W. Powers State Recreation Area, Chicago
 North --- DuPage County --- Silver Lake, DuPage County Forest Preserve District
 North --- DuPage County --- Pickerel Lake, DuPage County Forest Preserve District
 North --- DuPage County--- Grove Lake, DuPage County Forest Preserve District
 North --- Jo Daviess County --- Apple River, Apple River Canyon State Park **
 North --- Kankakee County --- Bird Park Quarry, Kankakee
 North --- Kankakee County --- Rock Creek, Kankakee River State Park **
 North --- Kendall County --- Big Lake, Silver Springs State Fish and Wildlife Area (SFWA)
 North --- Lake County --- Sand Lake, Illinois Beach State Park
 North --- LaSalle County --- Illinois and Michigan Canal Lock 14, LaSalle
 North --- LaSalle County --- Lake Mendota, Village of Mendota
 North --- McHenry County --- Lake Atwood, McHenry County Conservation District
 North --- McHenry County --- Piscasaw Creek, McHenry County Conservation District
 North --- Ogle County --- Pine Creek, White Pines Forest State Park **
 North --- Rock Island County--- Prospect Park, Moline
 North --- Stephenson --- Yellow Creek in Krape Park, Freeport
 North --- Whiteside County --- Centennial Park Pond, Rock Falls
 North --- Will County --- Lake Milliken, Des Plaines SFWA
 North --- Winnebago County --- Four Lakes, Winnebago County Forest Preserve District
 North --- Winnebago County --- Baumann Lake, Cherry Valley
(UPDATE:  Forest Preserve District of Cook County locations will have a later opening date for spring trout season; check the FPDCC website at for details on trout season at Axehead, Belleau, Sag Quarry East, Horsetail and Green lakes.)

 Central --- Adams County --- Siloam Springs State Park Lake **
 Central --- Cass County --- Gridley Lake, Jim Edgar Panther Creek SFWA **
 Central --- Champaign County --- Lake of the Woods, Champaign Co. Forest Preserve Dist.
 Central --- Champaign County --- Kaufman Lake, Champaign Park District
 Central --- Christian County --- Manners Park, Taylorville Park District
 Central --- Coles County --- Eastern Illinois University Campus Pond, Charleston
 Central --- De Witt County --- Weldon Springs, Weldon Springs State Park
 Central --- Clark County --- Casey Park Pond, Casey
 Central --- Hancock County --- Horton Lake, Nauvoo State Park **
 Central --- Macon County --- Sportsman’s Club Pond, Macon County Conservation District
 Central --- McLean County --- Miller Park Lake, Bloomington
 Central --- Morgan County --- Morgan Lake at Nichols Park, Jacksonville **
 Central --- Moultrie County --- Wyman Lake, Sullivan
 Central --- Pike County --- King Park Pond, Pittsfield
 Central --- Sangamon County --- Southwind Park, Springfield
 Central --- Sangamon County --- IDOT Lake, Springfield **
 Central --- Sangamon County --- Washington Park Pond, Springfield
 Central --- Shelby County --- Forest Park Lagoon, Shelbyville
 Central --- Vermilion County --- Clear Lake, Kickapoo State Recreation Area

 South --- Jefferson County --- Mount Vernon Game Farm Pond
 South --- Johnson County --- Ferne Clyffe State Park Lake
 South --- Madison County --- Belk Park Pond, Wood River
 South --- Marion County --- Boston Pond, Stephen A. Forbes State Recreation Area
 South --- Massac County --- Fairgrounds Pond, Fort Massac State Park
 South --- Randolph County --- Derby Lake, Sparta (World Shooting and Recreational Complex)
 South --- St. Clair County --- Frank Holten State Park Main Lake
 South --- St. Clair County --- Jones Park Lake, East St. Louis
 South --- St. Clair County --- Willow Lake at Peabody River King SFWA**
South --- Wabash County --- Beall Woods Lake, Beall Woods State Park
 South --- Wayne County --- Sam Dale Conservation Area Trout Pond
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