May 21st, 2019

trout derby courtesy photoCourtesy photoROBERT PIERCE • Leader & Times


It’s mid-March, and after what many would consider a long cold winter, spring is nigh.

Although humans do not hibernate like many animals during the cold season, many have spent the bulk of their time indoors with heat.

This weekend, weather is forecast to be mild with temperatures in the 50s and light winds in Southwest Kansas, and with that in mind, Meade Lake State Park is giving children and adults a chance to get outside.

The park is hosting its annual trout derby starting Saturday morning at 8. Registration fees are $15 for adults and $5 for children. A Kansas fishing license is required, as is a trout stamp for those 16 and older.

For adults, $50 gift certificates will be awarded, and kids will receive $25 gift certificates. Adult classes are the heaviest fish and the heaviest stringer. Youth classes are the heaviest fish and the lightest fish.

“The two tagged fish if they’re caught and brought up to the office, it’s $100 each,” Meade Lake Administrative Specialist Tiffany Turley.

Turley said trout fishing has fared quite well thus far this year at Meade Lake.

“We’ll see it stocked some time in the next week, but we’ve had people out here almost every day that it’s not been negative something and a thousand mile an hour wind,” she said. “A lot of people are catching their limit in about two hours is what I’ve been seeing.”

Turley said 2018’s trout derby saw the biggest attendance, and she is hoping for more this year.

“We had 74 last year, and that was the biggest one so far,” she said. “We’re hoping to have a bigger one this year than last year. The weather’s supposed to be nice. I think I saw 50s this morning.”

Final weigh in for Saturday’s trout derby is at 2 p.m., and Turley said there are no exceptions. Saturday will also feature a concession stand and bait shop for those on hand.

Participants can register from now until Saturday and on Saturday from 8 a.m. to noon with fees of $15 for adults and $5 for kids.

“They can do it either by phone call or they can come into the office,” she said. 

Meade Lake State Park can be reached at 620-873-2572. The trout derby is a fundraiser for OK Kids Day which takes place this year on May 4 at the park.

“We’re always accepting donations for OK Kids Day,” Turley said. “They can donate more if they want to. This is also treated as a park open house, so if people just want to come out and enjoy the day, there’ll be coffee and hot chocolate up at the office. Vehicle permits are required. It’s not one of our free days. It’s $5 for a vehicle permit for the day or $25 for an annual.”

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