Outdoor Recreation

Fishing in Kelowna: The Best Spots for a Big Catch

A fisherman casting his line during a dusk sunset on one of the lakes surrounding Merritt, BC
Allen Jones

Amidst nature's splendour, Kelowna emerges as a location for anglers seeking the thrill of a big catch. Here, the serene waters beckon with the promise of a diverse and bountiful fishing experience.

Popular Fishing Spots in Kelowna

Wood Lake: As the summer sun warms the waters, Wood Lake becomes a paradise for anglers. This quieter lake, away from the bustling city life, is abundant with kokanee, rainbow trout, perch, and the occasional pike minnow and whitefish. The lake's tranquil environment makes it an ideal spot for those seeking a peaceful fishing experience.

Shannon Lake: This spot stands out as a family-friendly destination in West Kelowna. Frequently stocked, it almost guarantees bites, making it an excellent spot for young anglers to try their hand at fishing. Here, rainbow trout swim alongside large mouth bass and perch, offering a variety of catches for anglers of all skill levels.

Local Fish Species in Kelowna

Diverse Aquatic Life: Kelowna's lakes are teeming with a variety of fish species, each adding to the rich mix of the local ecosystem. Rainbow trout, a prevalent species, can be found in lakes like Oyama, Jackpine, and Shannon, weighing between 1-20 pounds. For those interested in kokanee and whitefish, the mouths of Mill Creek and Mission Creek are promising spots. Bass enthusiasts will find Vaseux Lake and Skaha Lake rewarding, with small mouth bass being particularly abundant in Skaha Lake.

A Rich Ecosystem: The diversity of fish in Kelowna's waters reflects the area's aquatic ecosystem. Each species, from the nimble perch to the formidable bass, plays a role in maintaining the ecological balance. Anglers have the opportunity not only to catch these magnificent creatures but also to witness the interplay of nature's elements in these waters.

Fishing Regulations and Safety Measures

Fishing in Kelowna is about respecting nature and following regulations. All visitors planning to fish must obtain a license, a straightforward process that can be completed online or at local spots like A&C Sports Ltd. or Postill Lake Resort. Children under 16 do not require a license, making fishing trips an ideal family outing.

Safety FirstSafety is paramount, especially during ice fishing. Anglers should ensure the ice is at least 3 inches thick before venturing out and continuously check ice thickness. The use of fires on ice is a strict no, as it can damage the structural integrity of the ice. Layering up and bringing blankets are safer alternatives to keep warm.


Kelowna offers an unparalleled fishing experience, blending serene landscapes with abundant aquatic life. Kelowna's lakes and rivers provide the perfect backdrop for your fishing escapades. As you cast your line into these pristine waters, remember to fish responsibly, respecting the rules and the environment, ensuring these natural treasures continue to thrive for generations to come.