Gold Rush Returns to West Virginia

The West Virginia Gold Rush returns March 23 – April 3, 2021. For the fourth year in a row, the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources is planning statewide stockings of the Mountain State’s very own golden rainbow trout. This fish, while native to West Virginia, is a prized catch among anglers. Every spring, we take to our lakes and streams and stock over 50,000 golden trout to give anglers from across the country a chance to reel in this prized catch.

Cast A Line & End Up in Almost Heaven

Here, what matters most are the moments you hold onto. Simple and pure. Those moments where you become one with the call of churning streams and relax in the sound of calm waters – all while waiting for the perfect catch. Escape the hustle and bustle and plan your outdoor outing to West Virginia.

About the Golden Rainbow Trout

West Virginia’s golden rainbow trout is prized by anglers young and old for its unmistakable, bright-yellow color. These fish were selectively and successfully bred by West Virginia Division of Natural Resources biologists over several years and introduced to the public in 1963 as part of West Virginia’s centennial celebration. Decades later, the West Virginia golden rainbow trout has been a popular sport fish, reeling in anglers from all over the country.

Purchase a fishing license

A valid fishing license with a current trout stamp is your ticket to catching West Virginia’s golden rainbow trout. All anglers 15 years and older are required to have a West Virginia fishing license and a valid form of identification while fishing. Licenses are valid through the entire calendar year. Whether you’re looking to come for the day or stay for a week, there’s a West Virginia fishing license for you.

Licenses can be purchased at 160 retail locations across the state or online.

Purchase a fishing license

Stocking Locations

Your fishing getaway in Almost Heaven is a click away. Explore the map below to find a stocking location near you.

  • WV State Parks & Forests Stocking Locations
  • Other WV Stocking Locations

Click here to download the list of stocking locations for offline browsing.

The 2021 Gold Rush Giveaway

50,000 Golden Trout | 100 Lucky Winners

We’re making every cast count. Of the 50,000 golden trout stocked for Gold Rush, 100 fish will have specially marked, numbered tags. If you are a lucky angler who reels in a catch with a numbered tag, you can enter to win one of four prizes. One lucky winner will win the grand prize, a three-night cabin stay at Blackwater Falls State Park. Other prizes include one-night cabin stays at a West Virginia state park or forest, West Virginia State Parks gift cards and exclusive Gold Rush merch.

  • 1. Three-Night State Park Stay

    Three-night cabin stay at Blackwater Falls State Park

  • 2. One-night State Park Stay

    One-night cabin stay at one West Virginia state park or forest.

  • 3. State Park Gift Card

    $25 gift card to West Virginia state parks

  • 4. Exclusive Merchandise

    Exclusive Gold Rush merchandise (t-shirt, sticker, patches)

How To Enter


Enter and verify your tag number.


Complete the submission form.


Wait for the call! Prizes will be announced at the end of the Gold Rush.

Don't have a numbered tag? You can still win!

Sign-up to receive travel tips and information from the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources for a chance to win a free state park stay or exclusive Gold Rush 2021 merchandise.

Gold Rush Deals & Discounts


Enjoy a special buy one night, get the second night 50% off on cabins and campsites at Cowger’s Riverside Campground and Rentals on stays booked between March 20 – April 15, 2021.

Get This Deal


Extend your fishing adventure with a stay at the Hilton Garden Inn – Clarksburg. Anglers and fisherman can get 15% off regular rates and Hilton Honors members can get 20% off on stays booked between March 20 – April 15, 2021. Deal not available to use March 26 and 27 and April 10 – 12.

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Experience whitewater rafting in Almost Heaven with West Virginia Adventures. Use promo code GOLDRUSH to enjoy a $99 Gold Rush rafting special. This offer is valid on any New River trip booked between March 20 – April 15, 2021. Minimum group size is four people.

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Rest your head in Almost Heaven with a special $150/night 2-bedroom cabin special at West Virginia Adventures. This offer is valid on stays booked between March 20 – April 15, 2021. Use promo code GOLDRUSH. Maximum four guests per cabin.

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Get 15% off your entire lodge or cabin stay at a West Virginia State Park or Forest. Book your stay between March 17 – April 10, 2021 and receive 15% off. Simply book online and use offer code GOLD at checkout. *Some exclusions apply.

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The West Virginia Wildlife Federation is giving away free 2021 memberships during the West Virginia Gold Rush. All you must do to receive your free membership is complete three simple tasks.

Get This Deal


Press Center

Click here to access video and photos of the West Virginia golden rainbow trout.

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