Fishing at Freeway, Timber Linn and Waverly Lakes in Albany (2024)

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The Willamette Valley city of Albany is far smaller than Salem to the north or Eugene to the south, but when it comes to cool-weather trout, it has quite a decent population.

Freeway Lakes, Timber-Linn Lake and Waverly Lake are all easily accessed from anywhere in Albany and by Interstate 5 that passes through the city, and they are nice spots to take kids or grownups fishing for a few hours.

Look for at least Timber Linn and Waverly lakes to be generously stocked beginning in February or March and continuing for a couple of months into May most years. They might also be stocked with more trout when the weather cools again in the late fall.

Check out our stocking schedule below. It’s based on ODFW’s annual trout stocking plan.

Freeway Lakes just south of the city for years were also stocked with hatchery trout, but these big ponds tend to be left off stocking schedules in recent years and managed more for warm water species such as bass and crappie.

We’d also point out that some of the many trout planted in these waters are extra-large “trophy” trout, while others are smaller but still catchable fish the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife calls “legals.”

We also should note that these small lakes, especially Timber-Linn and Waverly,  are occasionally stocked with ODFW’s retired brood stock trout, which can weigh five to 15 pounds (similar to a salmon or steelhead).

Brooder trout are most often planted during the cold season and maybe just once per year. The last planting we noticed was an early January stocking of 70 big trout per pond, just as an example of what you might expect.

Our suggestion is to watch ODFW’s weekly recreation report (linked below). That updated report typically will let you know when and where the trout are stocked and probably how many. The numbers are usually modest for these lunkers.

You might consider increasing your line size and perhaps using heavier equipment all around. A steelhead rod would not be overkill with a 10-plus pounder.

Brood trout would very likely be large enough that they fall under the rule that you may only keep one trout over 20 inches per day.

These valley lakes tend to get too warm for trout fishing during the summer months, and the bulk of trout tend to be caught quickly, so keep an eye on the stocking schedule and get there when the gettin’s good.

Natural and prepared baits and lures and flies will all catch trout. (More detail: Trout Fishing: Basic How-To Techniques and Tips.)

However, when trout fishing wanes, typically warmwater species are really hitting their stride.

These lakes have modest fishing for largemouth bass and at times can be good for panfish (such as crappie or bluegill) and also are likely to have plenty of bullhead catfish.

Here’s a quick peek at each lake:

Freeway Lakes

Photo by Eric Apalategui

There actually are three small lakes here right along I-5 just south of Albany, with the two lakes on the east side having excellent public access.

When I first wrote this article, Freeway Lakes (the east part, anyway) was usually on the annual trout-stocking circuit along with Waverly and Timber Linn lakes.

These days, the lakes aren’t stocked but do offer some really nice bass as well as good-sized crappie.

Fish around cover for bass and panfish once the water starts to warm in the spring, when these fish will spend some weeks in shallower water to spawn.

Bass and panfish will continue to bite through summer and into early fall. This type of fishing tends to be slower in the cold weather.

If you use the Highway 20 exit, the lakes are about three miles to the south using Three Lakes Road, which parallels the east side of the interstate.

Easy bank access is limited, especially toward the west in this trio of ponds. A float tube, kayak or other human-powered watercraft will help you reach more fish here.

Timber Linn Lake

Anglers fishing for trout from the bank near a bridge at Timber Linn Lake in Albany.
Photo by Eric Apalategui

This small lake is in a nice Albany park with the same name and is typically stocked with good numbers of rainbow trout during the stocking season, which may stretch from fall into spring.

For its relatively small size, Timber Linn Lake can be very nicely stocked. Check the stocking schedule linked below and plan your trips accordingly.

Also, Timber Linn is fairly likely to get doses of larger “trophy” trout along with higher numbers of the typical legal-sized rainbows.

Like Waverly, Timber Linn can also be stocked again with good numbers of fish in the fall, when angling pressure might be a little less as other anglers try their luck at salmon fishing on the coast.

Also, ODFW allows anglers to fish for trout all year in the section of Cox Creek inside the park boundaries only. You can use bait within that same area.

TimberLinn Lake is located on the east side of I-5, behind the airport. The easiest route is to follow Price Road north from Highway 20. Turn in near the maintenance shops and dog park and you’ll find a parking lot right next to the lake.

2024 Timber Linn Lake Trout Stocking

Additional stocking dates may be added to this schedule later.

Date RangeTotal
Feb 5-9840*
Feb 19-232,500
Feb 26-Mar 12,500
Mar 4-81,300
Mar 18-221,040*
Mar 25-291,344
Apr 1-51,200
Apr 8-121,200
Apr 15-191,275
Apr 22-261,230
Apr 29-May 31,200
May 6-102.240*
May 20-24900
May 27-311,000
Nov 4-8900
Nov 25-291,000
Dec 23-27900
*These stocking dates include about 40 trophy-sized rainbows.
Stocked fish are legal-sized rainbow trout unless otherwise noted. Stocking schedules are subject to change for a variety of reasons. The ODFW Weekly Fishing Report linked under Oregon Resources below may provide updated information.

Waverly Lake

An angler fights a nice hatchery rainbow trout from the bank at Waverly Lake in Albany.
Photo by Eric Apalategui

This lake of about 5 acres is in a pretty park smack dab in the middle of Albany, visible from Pacific Avenue just west of Exit 234 from I-5.

Waverly Lake is regularly stocked with hatchery rainbow trout for three to four months starting in February or March up until almost Memorial Day.

It’s often stocked a couple more times when the water cools again in the fall, usually around October and November.

Access is excellent and this is a nice spot to have a picnic.

During the summer, when trout fishing is poor at best and probably nonexistent, sunfish and other warmwater fish can still make fishing worthwhile.

2024 Waverly Lake Trout Stocking

The following represents the initial stocking dates from ODFW. We’ll update this table as more dates are added, which we anticipate. (The lake was stocked 12 times last year, for example.)

Date RangeTotal
Feb 5-9900
Mar 4-81,000
Mar 18-221,000
Apr 1-51,500
Apr 15-191,000
Apr 29-May 31,000
May 6-101,040*
May 20-241,200
Nov 25-291,000
Dec 23-27800
*This stocking date includes a modest number of trophy-sized rainbows.
Stocked fish are legal-sized rainbow trout unless otherwise noted. Stocking schedules are subject to change for a variety of reasons. The ODFW Weekly Fishing Report linked under Oregon Resources below may provide updated information.

Find more fishing spots in Linn County

Oregon Resources

ODFW Weekly Fishing Report
ODFW Trout Stocking Schedule
Oregon Fishing Regulations
National Weather Service