Jennings Randolph Lake is nestled a few miles north of Elk Garden, WV and covers land in both Mineral County, West Virginia, and Garrett County, Maryland. Formed in 1981 by the Army Corps of Engineers, the making of the lake resulted in the flooding of Shaw, WV, which is now at the water’s bottom. Situated in the middle of the North Branch Potomac River, this 952-acre lake has been regularly stocked with walleye since 1983, making it a favorite spot for anglers looking to catch the fish.
What Makes It Great
Finding the walleye, which generally grow to about 31 inches long, proves to be a challenge at Jennings Randolph Lake. No one is quite sure why this is the case, but if you spend enough time out here, you’re sure to find one of the hot spots where these fish like to gather. While the lake is regularly stocked, don't expect to hit the catch limit— it’s better known for the size of its walleyes, not the quantity. And when you are finally able to hook one of these big boys, you're in for a fun, challenging fight, and a great fish tale.
Who is Going to Love It
If you're looking to limit out and catch as many walleyes as possible, Jennings Randolph Lake isn't the place to do it. However, if you have the patience to wait for a big one to bite, this is where you need to be.
Directions, Parking, & Regulations
On the West Virginia side, Route 46 will get you here. If you're in Maryland, Mt. Zion Road takes you right to the boat launch area. Both sides of the lake have boat launch access with large parking lots. A West Virginia or Maryland fishing license is required.