Fishing is available at over 20 public lakes in the Wichita metro area. Fishing can be a fun family activity that lets everyone get outside in nice weather, requires minimal equipment, and is practically free (outside of the cost of a fishing license and worms). Plus, those Kansas sunsets over lakes and ponds are the best!
The Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks, and Tourism stock 85 lakes in public fishing waters statewide as part of its Urban Fishing Program. This makes it easy and convenient to throw a pole and a little bit of tackle in the trunk and take off for an hour or two of fishing.
Some of the good Wichita fishing spots are also conveniently in parks that have other amenities like restrooms and playgrounds. Families with young children know how important that can be! We’ve noted those on our list below.
First, let’s talk about fishing licenses.
Who needs a fishing license in Kansas and how much does one cost?
Children under 16 years of age are not required to have fishing licenses.
For young adults (ages 16-20), there is now a multi-year youth license for fishing or fishing/hunting available for $42.50, which is a big savings compared to buying a license every year.
Senior citizens can now get a lifetime license, which is a great deal.
Also, the first full weekend in June is usually a FREE fishing weekend in Kansas. No license required!
Where in Wichita can you fish?
Several Wichita-area parks have fishing ponds that make it really easy and convenient to go fishing without leaving the city.
Be sure to click the links to read important and very useful information about fishing at each of these spots.
- Sedgwick County Park – This park has playgrounds, restrooms, picnic tables, paved walking paths and more to keep the whole family occupied before, during or after fishing! Sedgwick County Park fishing is available in the stream and the small lakes throughout the park. Some like the fishing docks while other anglers prefer to find a flat spot of shore to fish from.
- Watson Park – Watson Park has lots of fun activities, playgrounds, picnic tables and a concession stand that’s usually open on weekend afternoons (except during the winter). Public restrooms too. Read our article about O.J. Watson Park and all it has to offer.
- Buffalo Park This park has a playground, splash pad, picnic tables, sports courts, and restrooms, as well as a nice walking path.
- Chisholm Creek Park (catch & release only; artificial lures only) This park has a very nice paved walking path, and nearby green areas with picnic tables and public restrooms. Chisholm Creek Park is right next to the Great Plains Nature Center.
- KDOT lakes
- K-96 lake
- Cowskin Creek Water Reclamation Facility in northwest Wichita has two fishing ponds. The facility is located at 4182 N 135th Street West.
- High Park in Derby – Playgrounds, sports fields, restroom facilities and more.
- Riggs Park in Haysville – Spacious park with ADA fishing dock along with a playground, picnic areas, disc golf course, hiking/biking path, and more.
- Kechi Lake
Click the links to read important and very useful information.
The Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks has a downloadable map with information about Wichita-area ponds and lakes that are open to fishing. Find it here on the Kansas Outdoors website.
There are also other smaller community and neighborhood ponds in the city limits that usually do offer fishing. Just be sure to ask for permission before you fish!