FAYETTE COUNTY, W.Va. (WOAY) – Governor Jim Justice visited Fayette County’s Babcock State Park on Wednesday.
Last week, Justice announced that the Gold Rush would return to more than 55 waters across the state during the first week of April.
“There’s several streams that we’ll be putting golden trout [in] as well as rainbows,” said chief of West Virginia state parks Sam England. “Our estimation is right around 40,000 gold trout that will be stocked throughout the week.”
This year’s Gold Rush will happen in 17 streams and 41 lakes. The fish are likely to last until early summer.
“Fishing is a tradition,” said England. “It’s something that people have done for generations. People create these memories and it stays with them [for] a long time, so that’s important. That’s what we do is we create memories, we do things for families and allow people to get outside.”
For the governor, the opportunity to bring the tradition to others was near and dear to his heart.
“I grew up with this and sometimes people take it for granted,” said Justice. “I just know how great it is, so if we can get the word out, more and more will come that will generate more and more interest in West Virginia.”
The governor had a few minutes to try to catch a trout for himself, but they weren’t biting. Still, he was in good spirits as he was happy to simply have the chance.
“[I] don’t get many opportunities with all of my responsibilities. It’s the first time I’ve been trout fishing this year…I love being here.”
The governor said he was happy he didn’t get an easy catch because that means the fish will last long enough for many families to make some memories in West Virginia.