This one-acre pond within PGE’s Promontory Park near Estacada is managed for youth-only fishing (age 17 and under).
It is most popularly fished soon after the hatchery trucks drop off fresh loads of rainbow trout, some time your trip soon after a planting for kids to catch the most fish.
Watch for the first planting around mid-May and soon after each periodic stocking throughout summer until about September. It often gets a few hundred trout per planting, which is a good number for such a small body of water.
Small Fry also is typically stocked on the same schedule as neighboring North Fork Reservoir, a much larger body of water on the Clackamas River.
(If you plan to fish the larger lake, see North Fork Reservoir Trout Fishing.)
Typical bait and lure techniques will work at Small Fry. The simplest way for beginners to fish is with worms or prepared baits such as Berkley PowerBait.
Fishing with bait under a bobber is likely going to be your go-to method here because the pond is small and shallow, with some snags, and the bobber allows young anglers to “see” the fish bite.
For more information about this kind of angling, read our article Trout Fishing: Basic How-To Techniques and Tips.
Note that there also is a smaller bag limit for trout at Small Fry than at many waters. Always read the latest regulations before fishing.
Small Fry Lake is located about seven miles east of Estacada, using Highway 224 to reach Promontory Park. Figure roughly an hour’s drive from Portland.
The park has excellent facilities, including day use, camping and a marina reopening for the 2016 season.
Learn about more area fishing spots available only to young anglers (at least seasonally): Canby Pond Fishing and Mt. Hood Community College Pond Fishing. Nearby trout fishing open to all anglers includes North Fork Reservoir, Faraday Lake and Estacada Lake.