At long last, anglers will be able launch at and fish Tahuya Lake, on the Kitsap Peninsula west of Bremerton, when the new state access site there opens just before Thanksgiving.
WDFW has owned a parcel on the 125-acre lake since 1969, yet faced headwinds from fellow waterfront owners, including a lawsuit, in developing it. But armed with a judge’s 2011 decision in its favor and a $310,000 grant in 2019 from the Washington Wildlife and Recreation Program, construction and inspections are expected to wrap up soon.
“With few public lakes in the Bremerton area, we are thrilled to provide residents with another recreational spot to enjoy the incredible natural resources of our state,” said Matthew Blankenship, an assistant regional manager for the agency, in a press release.
Yesterday afternoon, WDFW indicated that the site was open to the public but subsequently recalled that news release and issued a correction today, explaining, “Further work and inspections are required. The Tahuya Lake Access Area will open to the public on November 20.”
The access site sits off of Gold Creek Road by Percheron Lane and offers hand launching for canoes, kayaks and other small watercraft, parking for eight rigs, a vault toilet and an informational board.
Tahuya is open year-round and has bass and bluegill. WDFW says it is stocked with trout too, though those releases haven’t shown up in the agency’s annual plans in recent years.
The struggle to open public access on the lake was chronicled over the years in the Kitsap Sun. A lawsuit filed by the local community club to block WDFW from putting in an access centered around “riparian rights.” Subsequently, with the court case settled and construction funds allocated, the club’s president worried in 2019 that the coming state launch would turn “into a slum. Look at the other lakes in the area, they are full of burnt-out cars and garbage,” they told a reporter.
So, let’s prove that theory wrong from the get-go, keep the place clean and promptly report crap left behind by those who would abuse this new public access for fishing and other recreation.