The last time I was up there was a few years ago. When I was there,their were some people there in a boat and they were fishing with bait. Maybe the state closed it to keep the bait slingers out, because the lake is a fly fishing lake only. It's along way to drag a boat and it's all up hill.
Even before the gate the access to Ebey was a mystery. The "Keep out" signs in the first mile aren't real comforting, but you just sort of ignored them and hoped nobody followed you. I used to fish it a lot and never felt completely safe. I'm not talking about the bears or cats (though there are plenty) either. If you read the DNR sign at the big gate (if some idiot hasn't torn it down) it states the reasons why. I seem to remember forest vandalism and dumping as the main reasons.
If you make the walk and trust to leave your car at the gate it is a great lake to fish. There's not too many lakes on the west side that you can fish a dry fly for 20" fish.
I tried to go up to Ebey last Spring but ran into the same gate. I phoned the Department of Natural Resources and they suggested calling the Mill Creek WDFW office. I never got a response back from WDFW. I tried calling WDFW again just about 2 or 3 weeks ago and they told me to call DNR. WDFW was able to tell me that the reason for the closure was severe vandalism. I called DNR and left a message with someone who could supposedly tell me if walk-in access is OK but have not yet received any response - it is still a mystery. I think that I would hesitate parking by the gate even it is legal to walk in given the reputation for vandalism.
Hey Tim leave the name and number for the DNR guy and I'll start bugging him too.I have a source that tells me some well placed bureau crats have keys and use ebey as their private reserve.No reason they can't leave the gater open during daylite.Thomas
I went there last summer, and parked at the second(open) gate, and a truck with some logger looking guys drove up the road. I never did see them, but expected to see busted windows upon my return, but thankfully nothing. I pushed a mt. bike (with float tube) up the road, somehow found the turn-off, and miracuously found the lake. I had no idea where I was going, but got lucky. Lake is more like a pond, with deep mud making access difficult to say the least. There was a tarp set up as a shelter (home) that made me the most uneasy, being unarmed and all. The lake is really cool, fish were very eager, but only got one of decent size (16"). Might try again, but the trailhead is a problem.
I have fished Ebey a dozen or more time in the last three years but none in the last year. There are now two gates at ebey. the first looks like a private gate. the second is a DNR gate. If you have ever been up to the lake you will know that various areas off the logging roads were being used as dumps. I have not parked at the new gate. I never had a problem parking at the DNR gate but I am a little surprised. The fishing can be very good at times. It tends to run in spurts. Largest cut I have landed was about 19. Largest I have seen Landed is 22. They really big ones are few and far between, but if the lake is on there use to be lots of 14-16 inchers. The lake feels very croweded with more than 4 or 5 people on it. Try dragons and damsels on an intermediate line at the drop if nothing works on the surface.