No license needed: ‘Free Fishing Day’ returns this weekend; DWR to hold special events

A boy casts a line for fish on "Free Fishing Day" in Utah, date and location unspecified | Photo by Brent Stettler, Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, St. George News

ST. GEORGE – You don’t need a license to catch fish in Utah this Saturday, because its “Free Fishing Day.”

It’s a great day for beginners and seasoned anglers alike, said Randy Oplinger, the sport fisheries coordinator for the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources.

Photo courtesy of Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, St. George News

“Because you don’t need a license to fish that day, it’s the perfect time to take someone fishing with you and introduce them to the sport,” Oplinger said. “And, if you don’t have a license, it’s the perfect time to pick up a fishing pole and give fishing a try.”

Early June is also considered one of the best times to go fishing.

“All of the fish in the state, both warm water fish and cold water fish, are active and willing to bite this time of the year,” Oplinger said.

DWR will be holding special events at a few community fishing ponds across the state for Free Fishing Day. During these events, volunteers will offer help and equipment those wanting to take advantage of the day.

“At most of the events, equipment will be available for you to use,” Oplinger said. “And volunteers will be on hand to help you and your kids fish. Also, many of these waters will be stocked with fish before the event, so there should be plenty of fish to catch.”

Special events in southwest 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:

  • Little Reservoir, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. The reservoir is east of Beaver. Directions can be found here.
  • Bristlecone Pond, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. The pond is at the Brian Head Ski Resort east of Parowan.

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

Community fishing ponds in southwest Utah

Shore Fishing Otter Creek | Kathy Lillywhite/StGeorgeNews.com
Shore fishing at Otter Creek, photo for illustration. Antimony, Utah, date not specified | Photo by Kathy Lillywhite, St. George News

You’ll likely have company this Saturday, 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 — averaging 14 inches long — before Free Fishing Day.

Iron County community fishing ponds

  • Lake at the Hills (Leigh Hill Reservoir) | 2210 W. Royal Hunte Drive, Cedar City
  • Kids Pond (Woods Ranch Pond) | In Cedar Canyon, 10 miles east of Cedar City on state Route 14
  • Parowan Pond | 400 W. 100 North, Parowan
  • Bristlecone (Brian Head) Pond | 521 S. Vasels Road, Brian Head

Washington County community fishing ponds

  • Grandpa’s Pond | 386 N. 3700 West, Hurricane
  • Razor Ridge Pond | 1934 Razor Ridge Drive, Washington City
  • Sullivan Virgin River Park Pond | 965 S. Washington Fields Road, Washington City
  • Skyline Pond | 600 E. Skyline Drive, St. George
  • Lower Tawa Pond | 2220 W. Snow Canyon Parkway, St. George
  • Upper Tawa Pond | 2220 W. Snow Canyon Parkway, St. George

An overall map to Utah’s community fisheries can be found here.

Wondering what fishing might be like at places like Sand Hollow or Enterprise reservoirs? You can check out the DWR’s fishing reports link here.

Email: mkessler@stgnews.com

Twitter: @MoriKessler

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2018, all rights reserved.

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