Free Fishing Day to Start off July

The California Department of Fish and Wildlife announced the dates for Free Fishing Days for 2022, set for July 2 and Sept. 3.

The free days are a part of the CDFW’s efforts to introduce new anglers to the sport. It is a low-cost way to allow anglers to get out on the water and drop a line without committing to a sport fishing license.

While anglers do not need a sport fishing license on July 2, other regulations like bag and size limits, gear restrictions, report card requirements, fishing hours, and stream closures still apply. In addition, anglers fishing for steelhead, sturgeon, or salmon in the Smith and Klamath-Trinity River Systems will need the appropriate report card.

Report cards can be found on the CDFW website at https://wildlife.ca.gov/Licensing/Fishing#ReportCards.

Usually, anglers 16 and older are required to have a sportfishing license from the CDFW throughout the year.

Long-term sportfishing licenses for 2022 are valid from Jan. 1 or the date of purchase through Dec. 31.

Licenses for residents are $54 and $145.80 for non-residents.

Anglers can also purchase short-term licenses. The price is $17.54 for a one-day pass, $27 for a two-day pass, and $54 for a ten-day nonresident license.

This is the last year for the calendar-based license, the CDFW is expected to switch to a 365-day license as of Jan. 1, 2023.

The license change was announced after Governor Gavin Newsom signed bill AB 817 on Oct. 7, 2021. The new bill also includes a mobile application that will offer an option for anglers to display their sportfishing license, validation, report card, and other sport fishing entitlements on an electronic mobile device.

For more information, see the CDFW website at https://wildlife.ca.gov/.

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