A fishing we will go in Nose Creek

Story by Jim Zang


Photos by City of Airdrie

Summer 2023

On any given summer day, it’s not unusual to see people fishing in Nose Creek where it widens out to form a series of ponds.

Commonly referred to as Nose Creek Pond – although there are actually several ‘ponds’ along the route as Nose Creek winds its way through Airdrie – the pond in Nose Creek Regional Park, by the amphitheatre, is actually stocked with 300-plus trout every year by the Alberta Conservation Association.

Fishing regulations are under the jurisdiction of the provincial government, with different rules applying to different bodies of water throughout the province. In Alberta, anyone aged 16 to 65 (with a few exceptions) must have a current fishing license. You can access this information at

In Airdrie, angling is permitted year ‘round in Nose Creek Pond and bait is allowed. Catch limits are five trout, five northern pike and 15 yellow perch (good luck with that). Alongside Nose Creek itself, angling is permitted from June 16 to October 31 and bait is not allowed. Catch limits are dependent on species and time of year and anglers are encouraged to check the 2023 Alberta Fishing Regulation before heading out.

According to the City of Airdrie website, the following species of sport fish can be found in Nose Creek: rainbow trout, northern pike, mountain whitefish, yellow perch, brook trout and brown trout. If you’re just fishing for fun, catch-and-release style, some non-keepers include fathead minnow, brook stickleback, longnose sucker, white sucker, lake chub, longnose dace, trout-perch.

It’s one thing to catch them, and another thing entirely, however, to eat them. After all, it IS a storm pond in the middle of a city.

According to Clint Goodman, co-chair of the Nose Creek Watershed Project and Corporate Environment Specialist with the City of Airdrie, the Government of Alberta has been reviewing fish consumption risks for fish caught in Alberta waterbodies since the 1990s.

“The Chief Medical Officer of Health in Alberta Health and Wellness is responsible for issuing food consumption advisories.”

As advisories can change depending on the conditions, Goodman recommends searching ‘Fish Consumption Advisory’ on the My Wild Alberta website for the latest information and downloading the ‘Should I eat this fish’ mobile app to your cell phone.

As for landing that monster fish, it’s possible, although not probable – but that’s fishing for you.

“Nose Creek Pond is typically fished-out well before the following year,” says Goodman, “and therefore the fish do not have the chance to get much bigger than their stocking size.  Annually, the pond is stocked in May with about 400 rainbow trout approximately 20 cm in length.  Nose Creek is different story, there are likely a few larger fish lurking about – for example, in 2019, there were reports of a 40 -inch (approximately 100 cm) northern pike captured downstream of Main Street.”

To watch a video of Clint and others talking about fishing in an around Airdrie, visit

In the meantime, if you’re fishing Nose Creek this summer, feel free to share the story and photos of your most recent catch with me by emailing me at and using the subject line ‘Fish Tales’ and I’ll run a few on our website from time to time.