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Annual Free Fishing Day helps beginners learn to fish without a permit or gear

By Cara MacDonald, KSL.com | Posted - May 24th, 2019 @ 6:27pm

SALT LAKE CITY — Utah’s annual Free Fishing Day is coming on Saturday, June 8, providing an opportunity for beginners and people looking to get into the sport without a fishing license to try it at no cost.

Free Fishing Day is a chance for anyone to fish at public bodies of water in Utah without a fishing license, according to a news release from the Division of Wildlife Resources. The event, held once a year, is a good time to introduce kids and beginners at a minimal cost.

“You don’t need a license to fish that day, (so) it’s the perfect time to take someone fishing with you and introduce them to the sport,” Randy Oplinger, sport fisheries coordinator for the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, said in the news release. “Early June is one of the best times to fish in Utah. All of the fish in the state, both warm water and coldwater fish, are active and willing to bite this time of the year.”

In addition to losing the entry barrier of a fishing license, the Division of Wildlife Resources will be hosting events on Free Fishing Day to help provide fishing equipment and advice to beginners, the news release said. The Division of Wildlife Resources is holding six events on June 8:

Bountiful Pond in Woods Cross

Bountiful Pond is located at 1275 W. 1600 North. From 10 a.m. until noon staffers will be available to help beginners learn through providing gear and advice. Free pizza and prizes will also be included.

A fisherman; Robert Williamson, KSL

Smith Park Pond in Farr West, Weber County

The pond, located at 2500 W. 4000 North St., will be the site of a free event in which fishing poles and tackle will be provided from 8 a.m. until noon.

Lower Stillwater Pond in Hanna, Duchesne County

Hosted at Lower Stillwater Pond on Forest Road 34 near Duchesne, several educational mini-clinics and a kid’s fishing derby will be held from 9 a.m. until noon on June 8. Snacks and prizes are provided for the fishing derby and they will have an aquatic biologist present to explain how fish are stocked in ponds.

Little Reservoir in Beaver

Held at Little Reservoir between 9 a.m. and noon, a workshop will be providing information about fishing rules, regulations, and different kinds of Utah fish. Equipment and lunch will be provided as beginners learn helpful skills.

Moose Pond in Manila, Daggett County

Similar to the event held at Lower Stillwater Pond, this event also includes snacks, prizes, a kid’s fishing derby and educational clinics. The water body is located at roughly mile 8 on the Flaming Gorge-Uintas National Scenic Byway 19 miles to the south of Manila.

“Early June is one of the best times to fish in Utah. All of the fish in the state, both warm water and coldwater fish, are active and willing to bite this time of the year.” - Randy Oplinger, DWR

Bristlecone pond in Brian Head, Iron County

Held at the Bristlecone Pond at 535 Brian Head Blvd, an event for beginner anglers will be held from 9 a.m. until noon. They will provide fishing equipment and Division of Wildlife Resources employees will be on hand to teach participants how to fish. Lunch is provided.

Things to know

Even though it will be free to fish on June 8, normal rules will still need to be followed for fishing, according to the Division of Wildlife Resources. Additionally, licenses are required to fish every other day of the year. Get your fishing license, which is valid for 365 days, online or from a licensed DWR agent.

Editor's note: The content from this article was taken from a news release sent out by the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources. This is not information gathered by KSL.com reporters.

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