SPRINGFIELD, IL – Illinois’ much-anticipated fall trout season is set to cast off on Saturday, Oct. 21 at a sprawling 59 ponds, lakes, and streams across the state. However, a warming trend has the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) cautioning anglers of delayed early stockings this season.
Scheduled to launch on Oct. 7, the early catch-and-release season faces stocking postponements due to forecasted and reported warm water temperatures. With trout facing high mortality rates in waters above 70 degrees, the IDNR promises timely restocking once conditions are ideal. Updates are promised via the ifishillinois.org website and its affiliated social media channels.
Anglers eager to reel in the trout must wait until the regular fall season kicks off at 5 a.m. on Oct. 21, with a daily catch limit set at five trout. Participation mandates an Illinois fishing license and an inland trout stamp, obtainable at numerous IDNR license venues, bait shops, sporting goods outlets, and other retailers. For details on specific site regulations and stocking schedules, anglers should directly connect with the individual locations.
The fall season presents a golden opportunity for families to embrace the outdoors and the joy of fishing. Resources for a kid-friendly fishing experience are available online.
The IDNR’s Catchable Trout Program, revitalized in 1994, has been thriving on the sale of inland trout stamps, enabling the stocking of over 80,000 rainbow trout each fall. An equal number gets stocked for the spring season every April. For a deeper dive into trout seasons and other fishing adventures in Illinois, anglers can visit ifishillinois.org.
For a comprehensive list of the 59 locations open for the 2023 fall trout season, including those designated for early catch-and-release, please refer to the ifishillinois.org website.