Boaters and anglers will have to wait even longer before they can satisfy their desire to hit the lake and go fishing as the County has delayed the opening of the lakes, yet again due to the harsh winter.
Montgomery Parks is delaying the opening of Little Seneca Lake in Black Hill Regional Park and Lake Needwood in Rock Creek Regional Park for the second time this season. The lakes will remain closed until March 28 at the soonest, according to the Montgomery Parks Website. On March 28, Montgomery Parks will reassess the conditions on the lakes.
Both lakes typically open on March 1 for recreational boating, fishing and other uses, however due to unusually harsh winter weather the lakes remain frozen. Montgomery Parks reports that the ice on Little Seneca Lake was still four inches deep on March 13.
In late February, Montgomery Parks which is part of the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, announced it would delay the opening of the lakes until at least March 14.
Boaters with a daily or seasonal boating permit will be allowed to use their private boats on the lakes starting March 28 from 6:00 am until official sunset. Seasonal permits may be purchased at the Black Hill Visitor Center or the Needwood Mansion.
Daily permit fees can be deposited in the fee boxes at the boat ramps or other launching locations around each lake. Seasonal mooring stakes for private boats are sold at both locations on a first-come, first-served basis. Boat rentals at both lakes will not be available until May 3.
Fishing from private boats at both lakes is permitted beginning on March 14. (Year-round fishing is permitted at both lakes from the shoreline.) All Maryland State Fishing Regulations for inland waters apply, and people ages 16 and older must have a Maryland Fishing License. Trophy Bass Fishing Regulations are in effect at Little Seneca Lake. Largemouth bass, catfish, bluegill, and crappie, are some of the fish species found in both lakes. Please view the Regulations for Private Boats for complete information.
All boats must comply with Maryland State, U.S. Coast Guard and M-NCPPC regulations and standards. Use of gasoline motors is strictly prohibited; only electric motors are permitted. All boats must be off the lake by official sunset. For a complete list of regulations, please visit BlackHillBoats.com or Lake NeedwoodBoats.com.
For information about fishing licenses, please contact the Maryland Department of Natural Resources at 1-855-855-3906, or visit www.dnr.maryland.gov and use their new “COMPASS” Online Licensing and Registration System.