Echo Lake - Fishing Opportunities

Echo Lake was incorporated into the Department's Community Lakes Improvement Program (CLIP) in1997. This resulted in the stocking of hybrid sunfish and harvestable-size channel catfish. Sampling results indicated that the hybrid sunfish did not do well, and thus, stocking has been discontinued. Stocking of channel catfish, however, has continued annually.

In July 2008, Henrico County temporarily drained Echo Lake to complete a habitat improvement project. The project included construction of a small settling basin above the lake and the removal of 14,500 cubic yards of accumulated sediment material from the main lake. The project has greatly improved habitat for the various fish species that inhabit the lake and will help to control the aquatic vegetation problems throughout the lake.

Echo Lake was reopened to the general public in January 2009. A complete draining of the lake was needed to accomplish the dredging project, so fish populations in the lake were greatly reduced. The Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries (VDGIF) plans to restock the lake over the next few years. Bluegill and redear sunfish will be stocked in the lake in 2009, while largemouth bass and channel catfish will be restocked in 2010 and 2011. To facilitate the recovery of the fish populations, the lake will temporarily be managed under a catch-and-release-only fishing regulation.

Echo Lake has a public fishing pier and an abundance of shoreline fishing areas. The lake's fisheries will take a few years to recover from the draining, but in the meantime small sunfish and an occasional holdover bass should be available for anglers to catch.