It is the 41st largest lake in the state of Florida. It is approximately four by 1 mile (6.4 by 1.6 km) and 10 to 15 feet (3.0 to 4.6 m) deep. Located adjacent to the City of Melbourne, it is the most critical source of fresh water for the city and the surrounding areas.
It furnishes two-thirds of the water to Melbourne’s 150,000 customers. Additionally, the John A. Buckley Surface Water Treatment Plant is nearby. Owned and operated by the City of Melbourne and furnishes it, and other cities, with potable water. It is one of the lakes that make up the St. Johns River system. Further downstream is the neighboring Lake Winder. Lake Washington is a wide spot in the St. John’s river created by a weir at the north end. The lake provides a great location for boating and fishing.
About the Fishing
Some hydrilla has plagued this lake during the past ten years, but successful treatments eliminate much of the hydrilla. Largemouth bass fishing is excellent from late fall through spring, around most emergent and submerged plant communities that extend into the lake. The lake is tannin-stained waters of the river; this is the first large lake in the St. Johns River system. This lake produces good catches of largemouth bass, black crappie, and bluegill.
Plastic worms, crankbaits, spinnerbaits, and top-water lures work well for bass. Some of the best black crappie fishing occurs in the lake or river just downstream from the lake during winter. Black crappie anglers trolling and drifting with small artificial jigs and live minnows in open water should find good fishing. Many crappie anglers use floats to mark areas where fish are and concentrate their effort where fish may be congregating. During warm months of the year, search the lake’s edge around bulrush and submerged grasses to catch bluegill and redear sunfish. Fly-rodding with a surface popper is a popular way to catch sunfish.
Lake Washington Park
This shaded 25.96-acre community river park is along the shore of Lake Washington, which accesses the St. Johns River. The park has ramps for powerboats and a launch area for airboats. Fishing is popular from the lake and fishing pier. Parking is available for cars and trailers. Other facilities include restrooms, a large pavilion, picnic shelters, and a playground connected by a paved walkway.
Very nice county park. Recently renovated and updated. Boat launch. Play scape. Very quiet, tranquil location. Gorgeous views of the river. Nice spot to watch the sunset. Clean restrooms. Pavilions, picnic tables, grills available. Spacious green area. Clean and well-maintained park. Medium-sized parking area.
I wouldn’t recommend swimming or water skiing as it does have a population of alligators, like most Florida lakes. This location has a boat ramp and launching area for airboats as well as picnic shelters, a playground, and restrooms.
- Fishing (2 shoreline designated areas)
- Large Pavilion (seats 162) Call: (321) 255-4400
- 3 Family Picnic Shelters (seat 17 each)
Listed in State of Florida Great Florida Birding Trail—Waders, Eagle, Purple Gallinule, Marsh and Sedge Wrens, Limpkin, Snail Kite, Sparrow; Bobolink (during migration)
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