|A Carbon County youth baits his pole with a worm at Gigliotti Pond in Helper. A fishing license is required for anyone over the age of 14 year round other than on Free Fishing Day, which will be June 11 this year.|
Every year, many recreational fishermen flock to local streams and rivers for the annual Free Fishing Day where they can fish without a license.
The Division of Wildlife Resources has marked Saturday, June 11, Free Fishing Day in Utah.
Fishing waters throughout Utah will be once again packed with fishermen and their families as they partake in the popular annual event of Free Fishing Day.
Although there will be no need for a fishing license on June 11 in all of Utah due to it being Free Fishing Day, all other DWR regulations, including legal size and species, will still be in effect on Free Fishing Day. These regulations can be found in the updated 2005 Utah Fishing Proclamation that can be found at several different locations in Carbon County or on the Web at www.wildlife.utah.gov.
The DWR urges all anglers, especially those fishing for the first time, to pick up a copy of the updated proclamation and be versed in the DWR's fishing rules to prevent any illegal taking of fish.
The DWR monitors the taking and possessing of wildlife, required licenses and permits for fishing. Anglers should expect to encounter conservation officers checking people and their catch at various check points. This allows the DWR to collect valuable information concerning wildlife populations and trends as well as aids them in fulfilling the DWR's responsibility to wildlife.
To help DWR employees monitor the fish that are taken, the district requests that heads and tails are left on after cleaning. This makes it easier for the district to determine if the fish was a legal species and of appropriate size.
Extra fish are being stocked in preparation of the additional demand that this event brings. DWR staff are said to treat this day like any holiday weekend where there would be an increase in fishing.
The free fishing event is sponsored by DWR, an organization that prides itself in the protection of wildlife not just for recreational purposes, but for educational and scientific values also.
District employees urge anglers to focus their efforts on local reservoirs and lakes where most of the additional fish stocked for Free Fishing Day have been placed.
It should be a great day to go fishing in Utah. Due to excess water this year, more fish will be hatched in DWR hatcheries than ever before. These hatcheries will stock over 615,000 pounds or around 6.6 million catchable fish in areas around Utah.
Aquatic bugs and algae that fish feed on is also more plentiful this year due to the excess amounts of water in lakes and rivers.
There hasn't been excess water just at the hatcheries, but every body of water in the area is extra full.
Due to the amount of fish hatched, it is sure to be a great year for every Utah lake and river. DWR employees can't stress enough how great every area in Utah seems to be for fishing.
Along with Free Fishing Day, DWR will also be involved in other events located around the state, including Logan, Ogden, Midway and in and near Vernal.
As a part of the Second Annual Utah's Wildlife and Rivers Festival, two kids fishing events will be held around Vernal.
A "Kids Fishing - Fun Event" is going to start at 9 a.m. This event will last until noon and will be located at Moose Pond off Highway 44. A few fishing poles will be available for those who would like to try but don't have their own equipment. Children who have their own equipment are encouraged to bring it. This event is being sponsored by the U.S. Forest Service and the Division of Wildlife Resources.
The second event, "Kids and Casting," will run from 9 a.m. to noon as well, and will be held at Steinaker Reservoir, which is located seven miles north of Vernal off US 191. This event is sponsored by the Utah Bass Federation and Steinaker State Park.
Part of the event includes the participation in a competition where children aim at targets. The opportunity to participate in state and national competitions will be given to winners of the competition.
Children are always allowed to fish for free, but if over the age of 14, a fishing license has to be purchased for them.
The nearest Division of Wildlife Resources office can be contacted for more information on Free Fishing Day.