Upstate Trout Season to Open in New Castle County
Streams With Youth-Only Day Set for April 1

Designated Trout Streams Closed to All Fishing From
March 18 Until Youth-Only Opening Day Saturday, April 1

In 2023, Delaware’s upstate stream trout season will commence for young anglers under 16 years old at 7 a.m. on Saturday, April 1, with the regular trout season for all anglers starting half an hour before sunrise on Sunday, April 2, as announced by the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control. On youth opening day, fishing is permitted from 7 a.m. until half an hour after sunset, and from half an hour before sunrise to half an hour after sunset thereafter, subject to area-specific rules.

raibow trout, white clay creek, christiana river, trout season
Jeff Wildonger with a citation rainbow trout from up north.

Several streams, including White Clay Creek, Red Clay Creek, Christina Creek, Pike Creek, Beaver Run, Wilson Run, and Mill Creek, will be stocked with thousands of rainbow and brown trout before the season starts, with some weighing over two pounds. Stocking will continue at White Clay Creek weekly and at other streams periodically throughout April.

A fly fishing-only area has been designated on Red Clay Creek, extending from Yorklyn Road about 0.4 miles downstream to the Auburn Valley State Park boundary. Additionally, a digital map of Delaware’s trout streams is now accessible.

Delaware Trout Fishing Streams interactive digital map

To enhance the trout fishing season experience, stocked trout streams will be closed for fishing from Saturday, March 18, through Friday, March 31, for trout stocking, prevention of accidental hooking, and allowing fish to acclimate to their new environment.

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Anglers intending to fish in upstate trout streams should be aware of the following rules and regulations:

  • A Delaware fishing license is mandatory for anglers aged 16 and above unless exempt.
  • A Delaware trout stamp is necessary for those aged 16 and above unless exempt.
  • A Delaware young angler trout stamp is required for youth aged 12 to 15.
  • A trout stamp is mandatory for trout fishing until June 30 unless exempt.
  • The daily possession limit is six trout, but in designated fly-fishing-only sections of Red Clay and White Clay Creeks, it is four trout.
rainbow trout, newton pond, tidbury pond, stocking, opening day
Rainbow trout

Revenue from Delaware trout stamps contributes to trout stocking for the subsequent year, with additional support from federal Sport Fish Restoration funds managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, originating from angler purchases of fishing gear.

Delaware fishing licenses and trout stamps can be obtained online or from license agents across the state. To find a nearby agent or buy a license online, visit For more information on trout fishing in Delaware, go to

For additional information on fishing in Delaware, including in-season trout stocking dates, consult the 2023 Delaware Fishing Guide.

Trout caught at White Clay by Mark Migdal

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