A hike to Aldrich Ponds yields fishing opportunities

Contributed photoAldrich Pond

If a fishing adventure is on the list, a four-wheel drive trip Aldrich Ponds may hit the spot.

The ponds are located on the Phillip W. Schneider Wildlife Management Area, east of Dayville.

With hike-in access only, not too many anglers take this off-the-beaten-path trail.

The hike to the first pond is 1.3 miles, with less than a half-mile more to the second pond.

The road to the trailhead is located 4-5 miles east of Dayville off Highway 26.

The ponds are stocked each spring with 750 fingerling rainbow trout.

Aldrich Ponds are managed for trophy trout and are very popular with anglers because the fingerlings grow rapidly, often producing trout over 20 inches long.

The bag limit is two trout a day.

Scenery along the hike and at the ponds includes Ponderosa pine and western larch, along with other native trees for a serene, yet rugged, journey.

To reach the trailhead, travel 4-5 miles east of Dayville on Highway 26, turn south onto Flat Creek Road, between mileposts 136 and 137.

There is no sign at the Flat Creek Road turnoff; however, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife plans to post signs in the near future.

On Flat Creek Road, travel 3 1/2 to 4 miles, on the gravel road, to the trailhead.

Two small creeks cross the road, and four-wheel drive is recommended.

Thunderstorm activity can make travel difficult, if not impossible, so check the forecast.

A Wildlife Management Area permit is required for parking.

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