Free Fishing Weekend in Ohio is June 18-19

Jun 15, 2022 | Ottawa Outdoors | 0 comments

This will be the only weekend of the year in which Ohio residents 16 and older can fish public waters without purchasing a fishing license. (ODNR)

Ohio’s annual free fishing weekend provides all Ohio residents the chance to experience any one of hundreds of public fishing locations on Saturday and Sunday, June 18-19, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.

During that weekend, Ohio residents can fish for free in any of Ohio’s public waters, including those of Lake Erie and the Ohio River. All other fishing regulations, size limits, and bag limits apply.

The Division of Wildlife hosts one free fishing weekend each year that aims to expand access to and participation in this cherished outdoor activity. The free fishing weekend is an excellent chance to get outside and experience the thrill of fishing at no cost. Anglers are encouraged to introduce someone new to fishing, especially youth, and make lasting memories on the water. An estimated 1.3 million Ohioans fish in the Buckeye State every year.

The free fishing weekend offers a unique chance for beginners and children to catch a fish. Here are some tips for those who might try fishing for the first time:

  • Keep the trip simple by considering the person’s age and skill level.
  • Choose a pond, lake, or stream where beginners can easily catch a few fish.
  • Use live bait to increase the chance of catching a fish. Live bait is also more interesting for children.
  • Bring a camera and snacks.
  • Be patient – plan on spending time untangling lines, baiting hooks, landing fish, and taking pictures.
  • Most of all, keep the trip fun.

Ohio’s lakes, reservoirs, rivers, and streams offer extraordinary fishing opportunities. The Division of Wildlife manages the fisheries of 124,000 acres of inland water, 7,000 miles of streams, 2¼ million acres of Lake Erie, and Ohio’s portion of 481 miles of the Ohio River.

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