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Fish for Free on June 10 - Free Fishing Day

Kids with a Channel Catfish
Kids with a Channel Catfish

Fishing license not required on Free Fishing Day

If it’s been years since you’ve been fishing—or you’ve never fished before—mark June 10 on your calendar.

June 10 is Free Fishing Day in Utah. You don’t need a fishing license to fish in the state that day.

Randy Oplinger says even experienced anglers should mark June 10 on their calendars. He says early June is one of the best times of the year to fish in Utah, which makes Free Fishing Day the perfect time to take someone who doesn’t have a fishing license fishing.

“If you have a spouse, a teenager or a friend who you want to introduce to fishing,” says Oplinger, sport fisheries coordinator for the Division of Wildlife Resources, “Free Fishing Day is a great day and way to do it.”

Special events

If you don’t have any fishing equipment—or you do, but you’d like some help fishing—special events are the place to be.

“Equipment you can borrow will be available at most of the events,” Oplinger says, “and so will volunteers who can help you and your kids fish. Before the events, many of these waters will be stocked with fish.”

The following are the events the DWR is involved with. You can learn more by visiting the Upcoming Events portion of the DWR’s Facebook page at  www.facebook.com/UtahDWR.

Northern Utah

Three “Cops and Bobbers” events will be held at community fishing ponds. At each event, DWR conservation officers and officers from local police departments will be available to help beginning anglers catch fish.

If you have your own fishing rod and reel, please bring it. If you don’t have one, no problem—rods and reels will be available for you to use.

“Cops and Bobbers” events will be held at the following ponds:

In addition to the “Cops and Bobbers” event, the annual Bear River Celebration will take place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Skylar’s Pond. Interactive booths will help young people discover the joys of fishing and learn the importance of good water quality and responsible recreation in the Bear River watershed.

Visit www.facebook.com/UtahDWR for details about the events.

Northeastern Utah

Free fishing events will be held at three locations. If you have your own fishing rod, please bring it. If you don’t have your own rod and reel, no problem—a limited number will be available to use. Personnel from the sponsoring agencies will also be available to answer your questions about local fishing hot spots and to help you fish:

Visit www.facebook.com/UtahDWR for details about the events.

Southwestern Utah

Free food, prizes and fun are waiting for you at two events in southwestern Utah. Fishing equipment will be available to check out and use. DWR personnel and volunteers will be available to help young anglers fish and to help them keep their hooks baited:

In addition to food and prizes, at 9 a.m., Sportsmen for Fish and Wildlife will host a free fishing workshop at Bristlecone Pond.

Visit www.facebook.com/UtahDWR for more details about the events.

Fishing basics

If you’re going to pick up a rod and reel and fish on your own on June 10, several websites provide videos and other instruction that teach the basics of fishing. One of the best is www.takemefishing.org/how-to-fish/how-to-catch-fish.

Community fishing ponds

You’ll likely have company on June 10, but waters in communities across Utah—called community fishing ponds—are great places for beginning anglers to fish. The ponds are close to home, most have restrooms and other facilities, and many of them will be stocked with channel catfish—up to 18 inches in length—before June 10.

You can learn more about the ponds at www.wildlife.utah.gov/fishing-in-utah/community-fisheries.html

Other good waters

In addition to the community fishing ponds, other waters across Utah should also be good places to fish on June 10. Oplinger divides the best fisheries to visit on Free Fishing Day into two categories: ‘best family fishing waters’ and ‘places to fish and get away from it all.’

“Waters in the second category will offer good fishing on June 10 without the crowds,” he says.

Best family fishing waters

Places to fish and get away from it all

Fishing reports

You can stay updated on fishing at these waters, and other waters in Utah, by reading the DWR’s fishing reports at www.wildlife.utah.gov/hotspots.

Two additional websites—bigfishtackle.com and utahwildlife.net—also provide up-to-date fishing information.

Learn the rules

You won’t need a license to fish on June 10, but the remaining fishing rules in Utah will be in effect. The rules are available in the 2017 Utah Fishing Guidebook. You can get the free guidebook at www.wildlife.utah.gov/guidebooks.

“If you have questions about a rule or about fishing in Utah,” Oplinger says, “please give our offices a call. We’d be happy to help you.”

A list of DWR offices is available at www.wildlife.utah.gov/about-us/contact-us.html.