This weekend kicks off a National Fishing and Boating Week, with free fishing days across the country.
Normally, anglers pay $23 for an annual Indiana fishing pass and $11 for trout and salmon stamps. But this weekend, these fees are waived for fishing in public waters.
Anglers can catch fish like bluegill, crappie catfish, large and smallmouth bass, white bass, trout, and salmon.
Cindy Stites is the Wildlife Recreation Program Manager at the Indiana Department of Natural Resources. She said more Hoosiers getting hooked on fishing is good for conservation. The fee pays for conservation efforts.
“We want to bring more people outside. We want more people to enjoy outdoor spaces, public lands, public water in Indiana, want them to be more involved in what conservation is in our state,” Stites said.
And we hope that if they go out and take advantage of these free fishing days, it will encourage them to buy a fishing license so they can continue to do so the rest of the year.
Conservation aside, Stites said fishing is just good for you.
“It’s relaxing. It’s a chance to be outside. Usually it’s quiet,” Stites said. “It’s a chance to put food on your table – but catch-and-release fishing is also enjoyable.”
She said it’s also a great way to see more of nature while you fish.
This is the only full weekend of free fishing offered by the DNR. The next free day is September 24.
More information is available at in.gov/dnr.