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The Ten Best Fly Fishing Sites in District of Columbia

District of Columbia may be a bustling metropolitan area, but it’s also home to an abundance of prime fly fishing sites. Whether you’re a seasoned angler or a beginner looking to try your hand at this popular pastime, DC has plenty to offer. Here are the top 10 fly fishing sites in the District, along with everything you need to know to plan your perfect day on the water.

1. Lake Anna State Park – Best time to fish: Spring and Fall – Cost: $7 daily fee for access to the park – Fish: Largemouth bass, bluegill, crappie, and channel catfish

Lake Anna State Park is just an hour’s drive from DC and has a variety of shoreline and boating options making it a great option for everyone. The park has everything you need for a day out on the water, from picnic areas to hiking trails, and fishing boats that are available to rent. You won’t want to miss this place!

2. Deale’s Cove – Best time to fish: Late Spring and Early Summer – Cost: Free – Fish: Striped bass and white perch

Located just outside of Annapolis, Deale’s Cove is a secluded spot that is perfect for fly fishing. The location is known to locals for being quiet and peaceful, with great fishing opportunities. You can try your hand at striped bass and white perch and stay close to home, only a half-hour drive from DC.

3. Lake Burke – Best time to fish: Spring – Cost: No fee to fish – Fish: Rainbow trout, largemouth bass, and bluegill

Lake Burke is an iconic fly fishing spot located in Burke Lake Park, just 45 minutes from DC. The lake is known for its rainbow trout, but it also has an abundance of bass and bluegill as well. The park has everything you need, from picnic areas to concession stands, to make for a great day out with family or friends.

4. Omni Shoreham Hotel – Best time to fish: Year-round – Cost: $150 per hour – Fish: Smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, bluegill, and other panfish

Omni Shoreham Hotel offers a unique fly fishing experience in the heart of DC. With picturesque views of Rock Creek Park, you can cast your lines from the hotel’s own secluded spot on the creek. It’s perfect for a weekend getaway and has everything you need to feel relaxed and pampered.

5. C&O Canal – Best time to fish: Late Spring and Early Summer – Cost: Free – Fish: Smallmouth bass

The C&O Canal has everything you need for a great day of angling in DC. The canal offers prime fishing opportunities for smallmouth bass, and the scenic views along the Potomac River make it an ideal location for a picnic or leisurely walk on a nice day.

6. Lake Frank – Best time to fish: Spring and Fall – Cost: Free – Fish: Largemouth bass and bluegill

Lake Frank is a popular spot for those seeking a peaceful day of fishing. Located just an hour’s drive from DC, the lake is well-known for its largemouth bass and bluegill. There are plenty of boating options and hiking trails around the lake to make for a great weekend getaway.

7. Tidal Basin – Best time to fish: Spring and Fall – Cost: Free – Fish: Largemouth bass, panfish

The Tidal Basin is an iconic location in DC, known for its stunning cherry blossoms in the Spring. But it’s also a great place to fish! With the Washington Monument and Jefferson Memorial as a backdrop, you can cast your lines for largemouth bass or panfish and capture some beautiful memories.

8. Riverbend Park – Best time to fish: Spring and Fall – Cost: Free – Fish: Smallmouth bass and sunfish

Riverbend Park is a secluded spot along the Potomac River in Great Falls, VA. The park is a great place to escape the hustle and bustle of DC and to enjoy some great fishing opportunities for smallmouth bass and sunfish. You can also hike along the scenic trails in the park and enjoy a nice picnic on the shore.

9. Harpers Ferry National Historical Park – Best time to fish: Summer – Cost: Free with park admission – Fish: Smallmouth bass and sunfish

Harpers Ferry National Historical Park is an ideal location for fishing in the Summer. It’s located just an hour’s drive from DC and offers prime fly fishing opportunities for smallmouth bass and sunfish. The park also has a rich history to explore, as it played a significant role in the Civil War.

10. Rock Creek Park – Best time to fish: Spring and Fall – Cost: Free – Fish: Brown trout and rainbow trout

Rock Creek Park is a hidden gem in DC and a great place to escape for a day on the water. The creek is well-known for its brown and rainbow trout and offers some great options for picnics and hikes in the surrounding areas. You can even bring your own fishing lines and enjoy a day out for free here!

In summary, the District of Columbia may seem like an unlikely fly fishing destination, but it has everything you need for a great day out on the water. With these top 10 fly fishing sites, you can enjoy some prime angling opportunities, explore beautiful scenic areas, and enjoy a picnic or hike on a nice day. With everything from secluded coves to iconic locations, DC truly has it all. So what are you waiting for? Book your fishing trip today and explore the best that DC has to offer!

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