Geneva, New York is located on the northern end of Seneca Lake and annually hosts the National Lake Trout Derby since 1964, during Memorial Day Weekend.  Seneca Lake is a member of the Finger Lakes, a group of eleven lakes, narrow, roughly north-to-south located in New York.  Seneca Lake is the second longest of the Finger Lakes at 38 miles, but has the largest volume of water, as the average depth is 291 feet and maximum depth is 618 feet.  Seneca Lake was a training base for the U.S. Navy during World War II due to its deep waters.  Underground springs feed the lake, which keeps the water moving in a circular motion, giving it little chance of freezing over during the winter and since the lake is so deep, the water temperature remains relatively stable at 39-degrees Fahrenheit, but during the summer the top 10 to 15 feet warm to temperatures in the 70 – 80 F range.  The warm and cold layers of water can be thought as oil and vinegar.  Since the water temperature is relatively cold throughout the year, Seneca Lake is home to coldwater fish, such as lake trout and Landlocked Atlantic salmon making it a great location for an annual lake trout derby.


Lake trout are the only major native sport fish adapted to the deep, cold-water, low-nutrient lakes located in Northern Canada, Northern Great Lakes region and Northeast U.S.  The average length of a lake trout fish is 24 – 36 inches and 15 – 40 pounds is not uncommon and the largest lake trout caught on a reel and rod was 72-pounds and 59-inches in length caught in Great Bear Lake in 1995.

The 2021 National Lake Trout Derby on Seneca Lake had 720 registered anglers and it was the second year in a row that a Landlocked Atlantic salmon, 13.13-pounds, claimed the $10,000 Grand Prize, beating the famous Seneca Lake trout by just over one pound.

Go to the website below if you are interested in entering the National Lake Trout Derby on Seneca Lake.