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The Best Trout Fishing In Alberta


Alberta is home to some of the best trout fishing on the planet but not all the credit is due to our streams along the east slopes. Thanks to changing fishing regulations, opportunities for trophy-sized trout now exist in many lakes throughout the province. The popularity of stillwater trout fishing has really taken off over the last several years and providing quality angling opportunities has become a priority for the province’s fisheries management.

Of the roughly 800 fishable lakes in the province, 294 of them are stocked with some species of trout – that’s 37% of all our lakes! With trout fishing so overwhelmingly popular it’s no wonder the province has introduced a Quality Stocked Fishing program.

I love stillwater trout fishing and many of the largest trout I’ve caught have come from Quality Stocked Lakes in the province. While I consider myself mainly an angler for sport, I will take home the odd fish for a meal. I appreciate that the province has created some diversity in the trout stocking program so that anglers who would rather catch and release one or two big fish have just as much opportunity as anglers that are fishing for a good meal.

What is a Quality Stocked Fishery?

A Quality Stocked Fishery is specifically managed to produce larger than average trout. By adjusting regulations (winter closures, bait bans, reduced keep limits) and limiting the amount of fish stocked each year, anglers have the opportunity to test their mettle against trout that are larger than what otherwise may have been available. 

As of 2022, there are 23 Quality Stocked Lakes in the province. 

The following is not a complete list as the regulations change annually so please refer to the latest Alberta Fishing Regulations for the most up-to-date information.

The Best Trout Lakes in Alberta


  • Bear Pond
  • Gap Lake
  • Hogarth Lake
  • Kids Can Catch Pond
  • Pine Coulee Reservoir
  • Smuts Lake
  • Sparrow’s Egg Lake
  • Stenton Lake
  • Sunken Lakes (Champion Lakes)
  • Upper Kananaskis Lake


  • Beaver Lake
  • Fiesta Lake
  • Ironside Pond
  • Muskiki Lake


  • Lovett Lake
  • Pit Lakes 24-45
  • Silkstone Lake


  • Pierre Greys Lake
  • County Sportplex Pond


  • Outpost (Police) Lake


  • Kerbe’s Pond
  • Muir Lake


  • Dolberg Lake
  • Whiteridge Recreation Area Pond (Blueridge Pit)


7 thoughts on “The Best Trout Fishing In Alberta”

  1. You missed a good lake in NB1. Known as little bear lake (Hasse lake). Has great fishing for rainbows, but also holds Brooke and tiger trout in its stocking program.

    1. Hi Jesse! Thanks for the addition, while I’ve heard Little Bear is a great little trout lake, since it’s not listed specifically in the fishing regulations I don’t think it falls under the quality stocked lake program for the province. Its just a good lake that flies under the radar! Thanks for the comment!

      1. Yes it is actually in the regs book but you can keep them from there for consumption if interested. They have 500 in this year’s stocking report in hasse (along with rainbows) but I know first hand they are surviving overwinter in the lake successfully as they were often and easily catchable through the ice until breakup. Haven’t been back yet this open water season but I do plan on it.

  2. Ooh I am mistaken they don’t have it listed in the regs anymore! Well, they used to though! Guess it falls under the blanket “trout limit: 3” for unlisted bodies of water.

    Odd, because It used to be listed. It is one of them places you need to know where to look, to be able to find the lake.

    It’s also not too far from the only rainbow stocked stream I know of around here too (medley river)

    1. No worries at all, Jesse! Regulation changes seem to happen every year where I like to fish so it happens to everyone. I have not heard of Medley River, I may have to check that out next time I’m in Cold Lake – which is soon. Thanks again for your comments!

  3. Hey Chris, I am not sure where you are located… but I guess us real anglers will travel almost anywhere. The next time you are up here in ES4 ( Swan Lake by a Hamlet called Crooked Creek) it was voted a few years back ALBERTA’S #1 TROPHY (stocked) RAINBOW TROUT LAKE. I am personally a river guy during open water then lakes around December, but let me tell you I have personally seen countless 10lb and 12lb (maybe 12 or more) the biggest was 13lb 10oz the guy was sitting right beside me on the very nice aluminum docks the lake has. 40yrd cast on pickerel rig with neon green power bait! Buck Fly & Schooner Minnow FLIES are notorious as well as trolling willow leaf with mosquito wet fly. I ran into fishies in 2018 and they net the lake every 2- 3yrs too analyze the stocking program… the had reported in 2017 4- 18lb that naturally seemed too split 2 at ethier end of the lake (left to right) they also said that the average size was between 5.5 and 6lb 23-25″ with about 6500 fish in the lake. As of 2022 it is still displaying 6- 10lb fish for every 3- 5 fish caught my buddy and I were getting at least one over 6lbs. Mark my words in is worth the sight. The lake itself is very green algae PRESENT. It has a massive aerator which is why the algae and massive fish. It can pose a problem sometimes on the ice because they run it 24hrs 365 days. But the size of fish… words cannot express!!!

    1. Hi Matt. I have heard of Swan Lake, although not quite as glowing of a review as you left! I’m not too far, I’ve been fishing and hunting in your neck of the woods, I’m originally from Whitecourt. I will definitely be coming up there this fall as the water starts to cool to check out Swan Lake, maybe I’ll see you out there. Thanks for the great comment!

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