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Orange County Fishing at Ted Craig Regional Park in Fullerton, California

Updated on August 23, 2014

About Craig Regional Park Lake

The lake at Ted Craig Regional Park in Fullerton, California is one of several inland city lakes in Orange County. The lake is approximately three acres and is located in the center of the park which includes 124 acres of rolling hills.

The lake is open year round and offers anglers the ability to fish for:

  • Trout
  • Catfish
  • Large mouth bass
  • Bluegill

The State of California Department of Fish and Wildlife stocks the lake with trout during the winter months and usually stocks the lake with catfish during the summer months, depending on conditions.

The lake is publicly owned and managed by the Orange County Department of Parks and Recreation.

Fishing at Ted Craig Regional Park Lake

Because of the lake's small size it is simple to find the places where fish are biting. If you have only an hour or two to spare, this is the lake for you. However, serious anglers looking to catch trophy-size fresh water fish, will be seriously disappointed. The lake is murky and not up to par with many of the surrounding inland lakes.

Bluegill fish are all over this lake and easy to catch with earthworms, mealworms and corn. Because of the large number of bluegill and small size of the lake, the bluegill stay small. If you want to get your kids interested in fishing, this lake would be a good start. Small hooks are suggested because of the very small size of the fish. We use size 12. If you catch some bluegill, please keep them. Reducing the numbers is the only way to increase the size of future fish.

There are a few large mouth bass in the lake, but they are catch and release only. Trout and catfish are easy to catch in the days that follow stocking by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife.

Ted Craig Park in Fullerton, California

3300 State College Blvd.

Fullerton, California 92835.

  • Free Street Parking or Fee Based Parking in the Park.
  • No Fee to Fish.
  • State Fishing License Required.

Ted Craig Park Lake Rules

The park is open from 7am to 6pm in the Winter and Spring, and from 7am to 9pm in the Spring and Summer. There is no fee to fish, but there is a parking charge to park inside the park. Ample street parking is available without a fee. Fishing rules are as follows:

  1. A State fishing license is required for anyone 16 years and older.
  2. Large mouth bass are catch and release. All other fish can be kept (check state rules for sizes and limits).
  3. No feeding the ducks and other waterfowl.
  4. No swimming or wading in the lake.

Review of Ted Craig Regional Park Lake

In comparison to other lakes in the area, Ted Craig Regional Park Lake leaves much to be desired. The murky water and debris inside the lake could use some cleaning. Perhaps a complete dredging of the lake might be in order. During the hot summer months the lake gets covered with a green film that covers the lake's surface. Trout plantings of fish are not frequent enough to bring any real action and the catfish planting doesn't always happen.

In my opinion, the County of Orange Department of Parks and Recreation could learn from the City of Fullerton when it comes to operating inland lakes and ponds. When you compare Ted Craig Regional Park Lake to Laguna Lake (run by the City of Fullerton), there is no comparison - Laguna Lake is the "winner, winner."

For more about inland lakes and ponds in Orange County and Southern California, see my other articles.

Other Amenities at Ted Craig Regional Park

In addition to the fishing lake, Ted Craig Regional Park offers other amenities including:

  • Playgrounds
  • Picnic Areas
  • Hiking Trails
  • Bicycle Trails
  • Rose Garden
  • Barbeques
  • Baseball / Softball fields
  • Sports Complex
  • Volleyball Courts
  • Basketball Courts
  • Racquetball / Handball Courts
  • Horseshoe Pit

While the lake could use some fine tuning, the park as a whole is an amazing place to visit. Set in the middle of urban Orange County, you feel like you are in a wooded area, miles from the City. There are pine trees and grass areas everywhere and a flowing creek that runs through most of the park and empties into the lake.

Other Orange County Lakes

Orange County is home to many inland, City lakes and ponds. Here are a few others in North Orange County and close to Ted Craig Regional Park.

  • Tri-City Park Lake
  • La Mirada Park Lake
  • Ralph Clark Park Lake
  • Laguna Lake
  • Yorba Regional Park Lake

Share Your Experience and Other Fishing Hot Spots

Let us know what you think of Ted Craig Park and other fishing spots in California.


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