Free Fishing Weekend

The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife encourages Oregonians to start a new family tradition during the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday weekend – take the family fishing.

The price will be right. On Friday and Saturday, Nov. 25 and 26, fishing, crabbing and clamming in Oregon will be free. That means no licenses, tags or endorsements are needed on those days. (Though all other fishing regulations apply.)

  • Desperate to get the kids out the house and somewhere outside? Take them fishing – it’s easier than you think. Check out the ODFW website to help get started.
  • Stumped for a way to entertain out-of-state visitors? Take them crabbing – the free fishing weekend applies to them, too.
  • Longing for a brief escape from all of the football? Take yourself fishing – and maybe bring home fresh trout, because those turkey leftovers won’t last forever.

“Getting outside fishing and enjoying Oregon’s natural areas is a great way to spend quality family time over the holidays,” said Rick Hargrave, ODFW spokesperson.

While the weather can be challenging at Thanksgiving, fall can be a great time to go trout fishing: many ponds and lakes have been stocked this fall and fish are feeding hungrily for the winter. In addition, Oregon Parks and Recreation Department is waiving day use fees at state parks (Friday only), some of which include great fishing opportunities.

“We’re hoping anglers have so much fun and success at this free fishing weekend, they’ll want to participate in a second free fishing weekend scheduled for Dec. 31 and Jan. 1,” Hargrave said.

The additional free fishing weekends were authorized by the 2015 Oregon State Legislature as a way of introducing new anglers to the sport.

For more help deciding on your holiday fishing destination, check out the ODFW Rec Report for the latest conditions.