Town Lake, north of Pacific City in Tillamook County, is a small impoundment that is generously stocked with hatchery rainbow trout during the spring months.
Town Lake Trout Fishing
Look for trout plantings to begin in late winter or early spring, usually in March, to kick off the good fishing.
It’s pretty common for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife to plant 5,000 or more trout here during several stocking runs from before Spring Break through the Memorial Day weekend.
Some years ODFW also returns to the lake in September, when the water begins to cool again, bringing a smaller load of significantly larger “trophy” trout. These are a hoot to catch on light tackle.
Typical trout-fishing methods will work here. Bait fishing is always popular and productive for stocked trout accustomed to processed pellet food.
Casting lures such as spinners and spoons is also effective, and fly anglers also can get in on the action.
For more information about how to catch trout, check out our article Trout Fishing: Basic How-To Techniques and Tips.
Town Lake Steelhead
Occasionally, ODFW will plant surplus hatchery winter steelhead here, if they already have plenty for their operations.
These salmon-sized fish put up an incredible fight if you can hook one. Anglers toss or troll larger lures or sometimes fish with bait such as sand shrimp beneath a bobber to entice steelhead.
Unlike those caught in rivers, steelhead are regulated as big trout in the lake, meaning you may keep one over 20 inches (and most winter steelhead are over that).
Town Lake Bass and Perch
Town Lake also is home to a smallish population of largemouth bass.
In an effort to preserve this fishery, ODFW currently has a one-bass limit for these fish.
You might also hook some yellow perch here.
Town Lake Regulations and Location
Check the links below for both stocking schedules and current regulations for this water, and any steelhead releases are likely to be listed in the weekly recreation report also linked below.
Town Lake is less than two miles from Pacific City.
Drive north toward the community of Woods and cross the bridge over the Nestucca River tidewater to Sandlake Road. It’s on your right roughly a mile north of the river.
From the north, it’s about 10 minutes south of Sandlake on the same road (871).