MDC offers free winter trout fishing and cooking clinics in the Kansas City area

Published Date

Kansas City, Mo. – Families can learn how to cook and catch rainbow trout at upcoming free clinics offered by the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) in the Kansas City area. MDC stocks trout in several area lakes for a close-to-home winter fishing opportunity. The clinics will teach youths how to catch trout and families how to prepare them for cooking.

Learn how to clean and prepare trout for the dinner table from noon to 2:30 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 5, at the Burr Oak Woods Nature Center in Blue Springs. After a demonstration, participants will have a hands-on opportunity to clean and prepare a trout. Then the class will try out some recipes and cook the trout. Taste testing will be available.

“First, I'll show the participants how to pan fry trout,” said John Rittel, MDC community education specialist. “Then we'll do a simple foil-pack baked trout recipe that turns out equally well at home in the kitchen or on the campfire coals. We'll also prepare my own personal favorite, cedar plank grilled trout. We'll grill a few trout on damp cedar boards over hot charcoals for a delicious, light smoky flavor.”

Participants should wear weather appropriate clothing, as part of the clinic will be outdoors. Registration is required. To register, visit

A two-part trout fishing clinic will be offered for youths age 15 and under on Dec. 10 and Dec. 12. Parents or family members are welcome to attend with their angler. All children must be accompanied by an adult.

The first session will be from 6:30 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 10, at the Burr Oak Woods Nature Center. Participants will learn about MDC’s urban winter trout program, what lakes are stocked, and how to catch trout.

Trout fishing will be on tap at the second clinic session from 8:30 to 11 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 12, at Honker Pond at the James A. Reed Memorial Wildlife Area in Lee’s Summit. MDC staff and volunteers will be on hand to help anglers. MDC will provide all tackle and bait. A campfire and hot chocolate will enable anglers to warm up if the weather is cold. Participants must attend the Dec. 10 lesson in order to fish for trout on Dec. 12.

“We'll give participants some stream fishing tips and pointers that will be handy anywhere trout are found,” Rittel said. “However, we'll primarily focus on the urban trout that are stocked in some of our local lakes during the winter months. Those are the fish we'll target during the fishing opportunity. They are readily available to area residents. Fishing for them is a great winter time outdoor activity for children and their parents.”

COVID-19 protocols and precautions will be followed at all sessions, including physical distancing and face masks. Youths will not need a Missouri trout permit if they catch and release all fish. If they wish to keep trout, they will need a trout permit. They are available wherever Missouri hunting and fishing permits are sold, or by visiting

Registration is required for the youth trout fishing clinics. To register, visit For more information, call 816-622-0900.