The 2023 Fishing Derby!


The Maple Valley Fishing Derby was held on April 21 to the 22 at 12:01am to 12:00pm. This event intrigues families and brings the community together as it also allows a time to bring together people who are interested in fishing. The event gives the community an opportunity to have a unified experience and campout at Lake Wilderness, that anyone, of any age, can attend. This year the weather brought some challenges, but it did not dampen the spirits of the crowd as the children of all ages and adults enjoyed the opening day of fishing season at the annual community event.
The event was put on by the Maple Valley Black Diamond Chamber of Commerce in partnership with Maple Valley Rotary and the city of Maple Valley. The event includes prizes, fishing, fish school for kids nine and under along with food for everyone. This is the one time a year that the city allows people to camp at Lake Wilderness. Where else can you go so close to home to camp out all night, enter a derby, and eat a ham and egg breakfast with all you can eat pancakes at midnight under the stars?
At 66 acres, the lake can get pretty full of fish with 12,000 rainbow trout in April, when the fishing season opens. Kokanee have also been stocked in the past, and the lake has a resident population of largemouth bass. A lot of people look to catch these fish from their personal boats or the fishing pier.

Sami Mccallister shares a personal experience at the derby this year, 2023: I attend the Fishing Derby every year and have, ever since I can remember. Every weekend mid April, catch me on a boat at 12:01am getting ready to catch the most fish! One year I caught 19 fish in 6 hours, which was a record for me. I really enjoy the fishing derby mainly because it brings my friends and family together as we get to set up our tent, eat dinner, gather around the campfire and get ready to fish! Then spend hours fishing. This year was a little different for me because I fished from 12:01 am-9am then had a 10 hour work shift starting at 10am that morning. The next morning at my work, families from the derby gathered around for lunch after the derby as they ate a protein filled lunch. In conclusion, the fishing derby is one of my favorite family traditions and I wish it could happen more than once a year but maybe it only occurring once a year makes it more special. For more information on the fishing derby check out this link: