It’s Official (Update 4/22): CDFW Delays Trout Season Openers in 3 Counties

Update 4/22: In addition press release posted to this webpage, fishing closure information can be obtained by calling the Fishing Closure Hotline at (916) 445-7600 or by clicking on links below.

California Department of Fish and Wildlife

(Press Release)

After Coordination with Local Government, California Department of Fish and Wildlife Delays Trout Season Openers in Three Counties

April 21, 2020 by kmacintya

Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) Director Charlton H. Bonham delayed the start of the trout opener in Alpine, Inyo and Mono counties. The director made this decision in consultation with California Fish and Game Commission President Eric Sklar.

The trout season was scheduled to open in these three counties this Saturday, April 25. The delay to the opener in these counties expires May 31, 2020.

“After talking with the county representatives, we agreed this was a necessary step toward being responsive to local needs in this public health emergency,” said CDFW Director Bonham. “These counties asked for our help, and we responded.”

Specifically this means all waters in these three counties not currently open to fishing will remain closed to fishing until May 31. After local government coordination in Alpine, Inyo and Mono counties, CDFW is also making minor adjustments to bag and possession limits in waters that are currently open for fishing to protect and conserve the existing fisheries that may be affected by increased angling pressure or harvest. These modifications will also expire May 31. Pursuant to the emergency regulation approved by the Commission, CDFW will provide accurate information for the angling public online or by phone at (916) 445-7600.

Today’s decision does not affect the trout season in any other county.

Early this week, CDFW had discussions with county leadership regarding trout fishing, which typically draws a high tourism influx to these counties. Local officials are concerned that people traveling to these areas to fish would exacerbate the transmission of COVID-19 and put a strain on their healthcare systems. Further, all non-essential businesses in these counties including lodging, dining and camping options are closed in compliance with state and local public health officers’ orders.

On April 15, the California Fish and Game Commission authorized CDFW to temporarily delay, suspend or restrict recreational fishing if the director of CDFW, in consultation with the president of the Commission, finds that such action is necessary to protect against the threat from COVID-19 based on state, federal, local, and tribal public health guidance and public safety needs.

At the request of counties or tribes, CDFW will consider action to address needs regarding fishing seasons amongst the COVID-19 pandemic. If you are a county or tribal representative with questions or would like to provide input on potential angling related delays or restrictions, please contact Roger Bloom, Acting Branch Chief, Fisheries Branch, by email at [email protected].

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17 Responses to It’s Official (Update 4/22): CDFW Delays Trout Season Openers in 3 Counties

  1. David Dennison May 9, 2020 at 2:03 pm #

    Paul Fry
    We living up here can only wish !!!
    But can you only imagine the uproar from the L.A. and SoCal people if that were to happen ?
    I can see and hear it now…
    “My rights are being taken away !”
    “Governor Newsom should be “impeached ! ”
    “It’s the “deep state” (of California ) doing this !”
    “First they try to take our guns away….now they’re trying to take our fishing poles away too ! ”
    “Let’s protest this,line the streets of Bishop and Bridgeport with protesters,signs and red hats ! ”
    “That’s it…I’m boycotting the Eastern Sierra !”
    and on,and on,and on…
    I readily admit,I’m not a big fan of tourism,for lots of reasons,but what you say,and maybe a sensible reasoning for this would be a “food source” issue,for those living here having hard times,a way to put food on their tables.Kind of like,we living up here don’t go down there to take their emergency food resources during this pandemic….they can’t come up here and take ours.
    But this ,just maybe a rant, my wanting to go fishing,but when I look ahead to doing that when the season opens,the THOUSANDS of out of area people with the same idea,and probably at my favorite fishing holes.
    We can only wish,Paul Fry……but,sadly, it ain’t gonna happen…

  2. Paul Fry May 9, 2020 at 12:48 pm #

    As a life long Eastern Sierra fisherman that does not live in either of these three counties, I changed my reservations to the fall so as to not bring any bad air to God’s country. However, all residents of these counties (only!) should have access to fishing these, their own waters immediately, so as to (1) Relieve the stress of the State’s blanket stay at home orders, and (2) To acknowledge the fact that the data clearly states that being left alone, to fish their own waters, is the best kind of social distancing imaginable. Fishing with the kids at Benton Crossing all day – sounds safe to me!!

  3. Good bye April 24, 2020 at 9:06 am #

    It’s a privilege not a right. I think there is a few more pressing things going on.

  4. Liberty April 23, 2020 at 8:33 am #

    It seems worth repeating, the trout season in S. Inyo was already open with no problems, same for Alpine county lakes. They are trying to close already open seasons which makes zero sense as does thinking being in the outdoors is somehow dangerous, that’s a liberal created farce. As funny as if you step outside your house the virus will kill you. Being outside is the best thing for health there is, to get out in the sun and be outdoors. Many will be doing that regardless of what sport they are involved in, good for them. Tourists are still going to arrive, still will be around, National Parks and the federal lands will all be open now or soon while this last minute “Order” is still around and what will happen now is people will simply go somewhere else as they drive through. Nevada is open for fishing, any lake that borders both states is open. The northern Sierra is open. I’m sure all the surrounding states fishing is open. People can watch all those dollars driving past and business close and leave. I was on the call for almost four hours with Fish and Game over this closure, at least 75-80% who called in opposed the closure, this fishing ban was an unthought out panic and as bad as the virus scare itself. The only thing it will do is crush rural economies even worse. The small business people are the ones being crushed and the unemployment numbers are going to keep rising. Keeping the economy open is essential.

    • Stop non-essential travel April 23, 2020 at 2:33 pm #


  5. Joyce Parkhurst April 22, 2020 at 5:48 pm #

    Thank you Fish and Game!!! My family lives in Mono County. This is a big relief.

    • HB man April 22, 2020 at 8:46 pm #

      I like your comment Joyce ! i still refer to them as the F & G TOO !

  6. Larry Pruce April 22, 2020 at 3:54 pm #

    Whether your a local or a transient it really doesn’t take a big explanation to figure this out..put on your big boy pants and do the right thing.

  7. Philip Anaya April 22, 2020 at 2:53 pm #

    The disappoint is not the delayed opener, but the covid 19 pandemic that is impacting everyone and everything . Take a breath Matthew. There are too many in the current past, present and future who do not have that ability. There are too many hospital staff on the front lines of this horrific time who need us to be safe, keep others safe so that they see less and less folks taking their last breath in the ICU. Come correct, support and consider others along with yourself and there will be tight lines when all this gets back to normal.

    • skeptical April 22, 2020 at 3:36 pm #

      “The covid 19 pandemic that is impacting everyone and everything”. This is only due to the sheep falling in line. It’s a pity we live in such a reactionary country full of weak members of society. The amount of hysteria involved in this “pandemic” is ridiculous. The death tolls are much lower than first projected. Even if it was to reach the original number of deaths, it would still be less than one quarter of one percent of the entire US population…… Keep fornicating folks, we need more dumb people for the “economy” to work. Welcome to the latest business cycle……

      • David Dennison April 22, 2020 at 8:16 pm #

        The last person I heard talking just about the same words your doing,it was some conservative preacher from the deep south,talking “hoax” and some kind of “deep state” conspiracy theory,saying it was nothing worse than the common cold or flu.
        And then going on to say what we have to do is fill the pews on Sunday morning,what we need and what the country needs at this time.
        Turned out he later died from contacting the COVID-19,probably from ignoring advise to social distance or attend or hold large gatherings of people,kinda like 20,000 plus people showing up in an area with no place to camp or stay..
        The “weak” people you mention,they are the ones that believed those projected “death tolls”,especially for believing who’s mouth or mouth’s they were coming from,no more than bought and paid for “experts” standing on a daily stage,or “briefing”,knowing when it didn’t reach that blown out total,starting out to be what was it,200,000 they were saying and then him saying up to 2 million,it was them (HIM) that rode in and saved the day and made things much better,trying to declare him as a National hero…you talk about sheep falling in line…about 42 % of America’s voting population do just that,with anything and everything they here,believing every bit of it,even when they themselves know they’re being lied to…as you put it, “weak members of society”..
        Now back to the Trout opener…postponed until June 1st,when/if things are safer for our little towns up here…WE,the people up here have spoken,and our local and County officials WE voted for and put in office listened,instead of like what many politicians do…a big thank you to them from the vast majority of us living up here in Inyo and Mono Counties..

      • Stop non-essential travel April 23, 2020 at 8:20 am #

        You don’t know anything about microbiology, do you.

  8. Matthew Jacobs April 22, 2020 at 11:35 am #

    Opening date delayed to June 1 is not acceptable to me, when I can go play as many rounds of Golf as I want too now…

    • quacque April 22, 2020 at 1:12 pm #

      You seem to have a lot of time on your hands, and you’re frustrated. This is a perfect opportunity to start volunteering in your local community. Lots of people less fortunate could benefit from your obvious interest in contributing to the betterment of your fellow creatures. Your eagerness to spread the germs of yourself and everyone you hang out with chatting about the constitution and rich golfers might not be the best thing to list first on your resume when applying for the EMT class or the fire department or the food bank, however.

      • skeptical April 22, 2020 at 3:29 pm #

        quacque, have you ever thought about anything critically in your life? You literally just told Matthew Jacobs to go volunteer locally where he would undoubtedly be interacting with more people than if he were to go fishing. You have all lost your minds on this. Keep your face masks on, your ideologues strong, and your minds weak folks. This country depends on it 🙂 #uhhhhhmerica

    • eric h. April 23, 2020 at 10:27 pm #

      Well since you posted on a story about the Inyo and Mono counties……I really don’t think we have to worry about 20,000+ people coming up here tomorrow to play golf. If they do they will be sorely disappointed because all the golf courses up here are closed. As far as your finding this “unacceptable” don’t worry, we find your self-centered attitude “unacceptable” as well.

  9. Matthew Jacobs April 22, 2020 at 11:00 am #

    In the meantime Golf courses and other forms of activity for the Coastal Elites will be open…As you can tell I’m not a happy camper at the delay of Opening until 6/1/2020


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