Tag Archives: Banks Lake

Here’s how to fish Banks Lake right now

Open up our guide for great tips and a map.
Open up our guide for great tips and a map.

Here’s a free copy (OK, it’s digital, but still…) of our guide to fishing Banks Lake in early spring.

It’s full of great tips for anglers, even those foolish enough to pass up on the opportunity to get into this weekend’s (April 6-7, 2013) “Are You Tough Enough — Triple Fish Challenge” fishing derby.

Check it out here:

Are You Tough Enough…

To fish our upcoming derby?


You’re probably not a real good angler, so just move on. Nothing to see here.

Unless you actually are tough enough for the local chamber of commerce sponsored triple challenge coming up in April.

You read that right: TRIPLE challenge. Meaning you have to catch bass, walleye and rainbow, all in one event, in the first event of the year in eastern Washington.

Thinking about a visit? Watch this …

An overview of the Grand Coulee Dam area, produced by KXLY TV.
This is a screenshot of a video overview of the Grand Coulee Dam area, produced by KXLY TV.

Someone just reminded me of this piece on the Grand Coulee Dam area, produced by KXLY TV for their Explorer TV series, in which I was interviewed.
They did a great job of cutting in quick and useful information, and it’s worth a few minutes of your time.
One thing I forgot to mention (one of those “I wish I had said” moments) is that the drive through here on SR 155 is actually the heart of a National Scenic Byway called The Coulee Corridor.

This KXLY video is only offered in Adobe Flash, so it may not play if you’re using a mobile device.


Fishing is great, despite it all

Bass boats speed up a lowered Banks Lake
Bass boats speed up a lowered Banks Lake

“The most beautiful place in the world.”

That’s the way a man from the western part of Washington state last weekend described to me the place where I live. The avid bass fisherman said that twice a year, he makes his pilgrimage to Coulee Playland to go bass fishing. And he’s so “ansty” to get going, he can’t wait until Friday mornging to leave.

Instead, my new acquaintance, met at a newspaper industry conference in Everett, said he gets home from work Thursday evening, packs up and heads to the Grand Coulee. He drives through the night, launches his boat at first light, fishes all morning, then comes back and sets up his campsite.

“My wife never could understand why I would get so antsy to leave,” he told me, “until she came along. … Now she understands.”

I asked if he planned to fish Banks Lake while it was drawn down this winter. He said he hoped to make it over, if for no other reason than to see and map the underlying structure of the lake now exposed because of the drawdown of the lake for maintenance purposes, a very rare event.

Bass angling friends, he said, report that fishing has been good during the drawdown, but the regular winter strategies are out the window. The fish are confused and sometimes huddle together, their favorite places now high and dry.

Two weekends ago, organizers of an annual bass tournament at Coulee Playland were glad they decided not to cancel their event. They had a blast in the lowered lake with more concentrated fishing, according to Coulee Playland’s Hal Rauch.

A confession: I am not a fisherman, but I still think this is the most beautiful place in the world.

Fantastic weekend for blues lovers

The stage at Sunbanks during the blues festival.

Bummed that you missed last week’s free concert by Jr. Cadillac? Don’t be.

Sunbanks Lake Resort is offering a great lineup of about 19 bands listed for  this weekend at their annual fall Blues Festival.

This is a beautiful setting and a great time. Call the resort for details and to see if there is any room available. Or get another room or campground locally.

Note: If you’re a boater, the only access to Banks Lake right now is at Coulee Playland, just down the street. The upside of this: The water is reportedly warmer than normal and beaches are BIG. This is a temporary thing for this year only. The USBR is lowering the lake for maintenance purposes.