Plan Your Catch – Fishing in Mountaineer Country

The Top Fishing Sports in Monongalia, Preston and Taylor County WV

Are you in Mountaineer Country for the weekend and want to spend some time with your hook and reel? Or, are you a seasoned fisherman just wanting to test new waters? Either way, Mountaineer Country offers a variety of fishing opportunities and experiences for anglers at any stage.

There is no shortage of public fishing lakes, creeks, and streams in the Monongalia, Preston and Taylor County area. With more than 150 species, angling enthusiasts gear up year round to catch the state’s best!

infographic of fishing in monongalia county and preston county

Fishing Areas in Monongalia County

Monongalia County takes its name from the Monongahela River that runs through the area. The county has a population of over 100,000 people with a majority of them residing in the city of Morgantown. In the county’s 366 square miles, there are seven public fishing areas.

Cheat River: Boat access and angler fishing are welcome at Cheat River, where smallmouth bass, spotted bass, and channel catfish reside.

Mason Lake: Stocked once in both February and May, Mason Lake is filled with trout, largemouth bass, channel catfish, and muskellunge. It also allows boat access.

Dixon Lake: Popular among anglers, Dixon Lake is stocked with largemouth bass, channel catfish, bluegill, and sunfish.

Cheat Lake: Home to largemouth bass, channel catfish, walleye, and northern pike, Cheat Lake allows boat access and has camping areas available.

Whiteday Creek: Stocked once in February and once every two weeks March through May, Whiteday Creek is home to trout.

Monongahela River: Boat access and angler fishing are allowed at Monongahela River where smallmouth trout and channel catfish reside.

Westover Park Pond: Picnic areas and handicap access are available at Westover Park Pond, where trout are stocked the first week of March each year.

Coopers Rock Pond: Stocked once in February, once every two weeks March through May, and twice in October, Coopers Rock Pond is home to largemouth bass, bluegill, and trout. There are also campgrounds and picnic areas available.

Fishing Areas in Preston County

Preston County is located next to Monongalia County. It contains part of the Monongahela National Forest as well as Cathedral State Park and Fairfax Stone State Park to go along with its creeks and lakes. The county has a population of nearly 34,000 people with most residing within Kingwood.

Wolf Creek: Stocked each month February through May, Wolf Creek is home to trout.

Cheat River: Boat access and angler fishing are welcome at Cheat River, where smallmouth bass, spotted bass, and channel catfish reside.

Rhine Creek: Stocked once each month February through May, Rhine Creek is where trout reside.

Newburg Lake: Stocked once each month February through May, Newburg Lake is filled with trout.

Big Sandy Creek: Stocked once in February and once every two weeks March through May, Big Sandy Creek holds trout.

Upper Deckers Creek: Angler fishing is allowed at Upper Deckers Creek where bluegills reside and boat access is welcomed.

Fishing Areas in Taylor County

Taylor County is located south of Monongalia County and west of Preston County and is home to Tygart Lake State Park. Tygart Lake is man-made, built originally as an overflow reservoir along with Tygart Dam in 1934. Three rivers flow into Tygart Lake, making it the perfect fishing location.

Tygart Lake State ParkThe 1,750-acre lake is stocked once a month between February and May, and then twice during October. Tygart Lake State Park is filled with trout, walleye, catfish, bluegill, bass, and crappie. Boat access and shore-casting welcome.

Tygart Valley River: Stocked once in February, and then bi-weekly between March and May and twice in October. Tygart Valley River is great for trout, bass, northern pike, walleye, catfish, and crappie fishing.

DNR Monster Trout Stocking

12 days. 30,000 trout. 40 lakes and streams. Fall trout stockings are back October 17 – 28, 2022 and better than ever before. On October 14, Governor Justice announced the launch of a new stocking program to coincide with fall trout stockings.

During this time the West Virginia Department of Natural Resources will stock 40 lakes and streams with 30,000 trout making it the perfect time for you to explore Almost Heaven’s waters and reel in a prized catch.

This year, the stakes are higher as we introduce the Monster Trout Contest Program and contest. During fall trout stockings, 2,500 trophy-sized rainbows will be stocked and of those 250 will be tagged with a special number. These 2,500 trophy-sized rainbows are from the White Sulphur Spring Federal Hatchery.

Check out all of the rules and how to participate on the Department of Natural Resources website!

Where to Buy a West Virginia Fishing License

Interested in fishing the waterways of Mountaineer Country? Everyone age 15 or older must have an active fishing license from the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources before casting out onto the water. West Virginia residents and nonresidents have a few license options to choose from – check out the full list here. Go online today to purchase your license before your next trip to Mountaineer Country, or buy it in person at one of the state’s approved locations.

Pro Tip: Purchasing a lifetime fishing license will ensure that nothing stops you from reeling in your next prize catch. And when you’re out on the water, be sure to have a form of identification with you at all times. Happy fishing!