West Virginia Gold Rush 2024 – Catch Your Golden Rainbow Trout

West Virginia Gold Rush 2023

Looking for the 2024 Gold Rush dates? This year, West Virginia Gold Rush begins on April 1 and ends April 13.

On April 1st, Governor Jim Justice will kick off the event with ceremonial stockings at select locations.

When the 2024 WV Gold Rush begins, Golden Rainbow Trout will inhabit West Virginia waterways. Now is your chance to catch one.

The West Virginia Gold Rush was created to celebrate the importance of these special fish which were first discovered in the state of West Virginia in 1955.

Across the span of two weeks, 50,000 Golden Rainbow trout will be released for anglers of all ages to chase with a rod and reel. The event runs for 13 days and ends on Saturday April 13.

Catching a golden rainbow trout is a unique experience that cannot be done just anywhere. The golden rainbow trout is not native to West Virginia. It does not reproduce naturally after being released.

As a result, many people will be traveling to the state of West Virginia. Don’t miss your chance at catching and appreciating one in person.

Golden Rainbow Trout

In addition, 100 of the 50,000 fish released will have a numbered tag. If you are lucky enough to reel in a tagged golden rainbow trout, enter your tag number at WVdnr.gov/goldrush. If you catch a tagged fish you qualify to win one of the four prizes listed below.

West Virginia Gold Rush Prizes

  • Lifetime Fishing License
  • One night stay at a West Virginia State Park
  • $25 West Virginia State Park gift card
  • Exclusive WV Gold Rush Merchandise

The 50,000 Golden Rainbow Trout will be stocked by the WV DNR in 62 different locations. While the 2023 spring trout stocking is very diverse and spread across the state, not every location will receive the Golden Trout.

Check the interactive map on the WV DNR website to see which waterways near you will be stocked on the interactive map HERE.

2024 WV Gold Rush Stocking Locations

Week 1

  • Anawalt Lake
  • Barboursville Lake
  • Berwind Lake
  • Blackwater River
  • Brandywine Lake
  • Buffalo Fork Lake
  • Cacapon Lake 
  • Cedar Creek Lake (Cedar Creek State Park)
  • Conway Run Lake
  • Cranberry River
  • Deegan Lake
  • Dog Run Lake
  • East Lynn Tailwaters
  • Edward Run Pond
  • Fort Ashby Reservoir
  • Greenbrier River
  • Hinkle Lake
  • Kimsey Run Lake
  • Larenim Park Lakes
  • Longbranch Lake (Pipestem State Park)
  • Mill Creek Resrvoir
  • New Creek Lake
  • North Fork of South Branch
  • North River
  • Opequon Creek
  • Ridenour Lake
  • Rockhouse Lake
  • Seneca Lake
  • Summit Lake
  • Tygart Tailwaters
  • Wallback Lake
  • Watoga Lake
  • Wheeling Creek
  • Williams River

Week 2

Last Years GOld Rush Stocking Locations

Learn more about the stocking locations from the 2023 WV Gold Rush. Minor changes have been made for this years West Virginia Gold Rush from the previous year.

Week 1

  • Anawalt Lake
  • Barboursville Lake
  • Berwind Lake
  • Blackwater River
  • Blue Creek
  • Brandywine Lake
  • Buffalo Fork Lake
  • Cacapon Lake 
  • Cedar Creek Lake
  • Conway Run Lake
  • Cranberry River
  • Deegan Lake
  • Dog Run Lake
  • East Lynn Tailwaters
  • Edward Run Pond
  • Fort Ashby Reservoir
  • Greenbrier River
  • Hinkle Lake
  • Kimsey Run Lake
  • Larenim Park Lakes
  • Longbranch Lake
  • Mill Creek Resrvoir
  • North Fork of South Branch
  • North River
  • Opequon Creek
  • Ridenour Lake
  • Rockhouse Lake
  • Seneca Lake
  • South Mill Creek Lake
  • Summit Lake
  • Teter Creek Lake
  • Tomlinson Run Lake
  • Tygart Tailwaters
  • Wallback Lake
  • Watoga Lake
  • Wheeling Creek
  • Williams River

Week 2

  • Boley Lake
  • Burnsville Tailwaters
  • Castlemans Run Lake
  • Chief Logan Pond
  • Coopers Rock Lake
  • Curtisville Lake
  • Elk River
  • French Creek Pond
  • Greenrbrier River
  • Hurricane Reservoir
  • Laurel Fork Lake
  • Little Beaver Lake
  • Mason Lake
  • Middle Wheeling Creek Lake
  • Mountwood
  • New Creek Lake
  • North Bend Lake
  • Pendleton Lake
  • Poorhouse Pond
  • R.D. Bailey Tailwaters
  • Rock Cliff Lake
  • Rollins Lake
  • Shavers Fork Upper
  • Shavers Fork Lower
  • South Branch Franklin
  • South Branch Smoke Hole
  • Spruce Knob Lake
  • Stonewall Jackson Tailwaters
  • Sutton Tailwaters
  • Thomas Park Lake
  • Tuckahoe Lake

Gear Up for The Gold Rush

This event only comes once a year and the two weeks will be over before you know it. Get your gear prepped now so you’re ready to hit the water with anglers from around the state. While inspecting your rod and tackle, check out our Best Bait For Stocked Trout article and consider using our Powerbait setup to catch golden rainbow trout this year.

We know that’s what we’ll be using and we hope you find success with it as well. Above all, remember to have fun and any day in the outdoors is one to appreciate.

Best Bait For Stocked Trout

What you need to Fish For Golden Rainbow Trout

Remember, in order to fish for a West Virginia Golden Trout, you must have a valid WV fishing license with a current trout stamp and a valid ID. You can purchase a fishing license online before your trip through the WV DNR.

Check out Coyote Peterson’s video below. In it, he talks about the history of the Golden Rainbow Trout in his visit to West Virginia.

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