Learning how to fish builds confidence in children, teaches them patience and perseverance, encourages healthy living, and helps children to better understand the interconnections between ecology and recreation, clean water, and species habitat. 

WDFW biologist Randy Osborn is passionate about the idea of taking kids fishing because it gets them off media devices and exposes families to the fun aspects of fishing and the outdoors. Teaching kids to fish can lead to a lifelong passion and a broader community of people who share their hobby, he says. Furthermore, the sport provides practical experience and inspires early appreciation of the outdoors. One day, these kids will address our environmental issues, with some even becoming professional fisheries biologists who manage our resources.

These five Inland Northwest family-friendly destinations for bank fishing (no boat required), are Osborn’s top picks: 

  • Badger Lake: South of Cheney, Wash., this WDFW access site is along the same shore as the public boat ramp.
  • Fish Lake: Southwest of Spokane, access is along the east shoreline and the Columbia Plateau Trail that continues just outside the county park.
  • Lake Spokane: Several turnouts downstream of Tum Tum on Highway 291.
  • West Medical Lake: West of Spokane, the WDFW access site is along the western shoreline.
  • Pacific Lake(Lincoln County): A day-long excursion that’s worth the drive.

For more details and driving directions, visit Wdfw.wa.gov.