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Free Fishing Days this weekend

If you’ve always wanted to try fishing, now is your chance! You may fish without a license again this year, during the first weekend in June. Take advantage of the free fishing days, June 5, 6 and 7, 2020, and enjoy the great outdoors with your family and friends without having to spend money for a fishing license.

No fishing license of any kind will be required for recreational rod and reel fishing during free fishing days and facilities use permits will also not be required during these dates. However, fee fishing areas (Crooked Creek, Douthat, and Clinch Mountain) will still require a permit. To increase angling opportunities, Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries (DGIF) has removed the restriction to fishing designated stocked trout waters. This will open over 2,900 miles of trout streams, in addition to numerous ponds, small lakes and reservoirs. Virginia’s diversified trout habitat offers a wide range of trout fishing prospects. All fishing regulations including size, season, catch limits, and gear restrictions, will remain in effect.

“Free fishing days are always an excellent opportunity to get out and try fishing for the first time, or to introduce new people to fishing,” said Ryan Brown, Executive Director of DGIF. “I would encourage everyone to take advantage of this opportunity and all that Virginia’s outdoors have to offer.”

The 2020 Freshwater Fishing and Boating Regulations can be found at the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries website at: Printed regulations are also available at most major outdoor retailers throughout the state that sell hunting and fishing licenses. In addition, the Marine Resources Commission’s website,, has extensive information on Virginia’s recreational fishing size, season and creel limits.

“Free fishing days are a great time to experience the abundance of Virginia’s waters from the mountains to the coast,” said Virginia Marine Resources Commissioner Steven G. Bowman. “We hope everyone has a safe and enjoyable time this weekend, and tight lines!”

DGIF also has a fun way to recognize a trophy freshwater catch, called The Online Virginia Angler Recognition Program. Annually anglers go online at to measure up over 6,000 trophy size fish annually. Since 1963, when the program began, over a quarter-million trophy fish awards have been issued.

Anglers are also encouraged to enter the 2020 Kids ‘n Fishing Photo Contest. For contest rules visit call 804-367-0969.

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