NC offers free fishing on July 4

Staff report

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com David Hinton, 31, of Rockingham, angles for catfish and bream on Friday at Hinson Lake in Rockingham.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com
David Hinton, 31, of Rockingham, angles for catfish and bream on Friday at Hinson Lake in Rockingham.

ROCKINGHAM — On July 4, the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission invites anglers and would-be anglers of all ages to go fishing — for free.

From 12:01 a.m. until 11:59 p.m., everyone in North Carolina — resident and non-residents alike — canfish in any public body of water, including coastal waters, without purchasing a fishing license or additional trout fishing privilege.

Anglers such as David Hinton, 31, of Rockingham, seem to appreciate the day even more — despite having a fishing license. Spending part of Friday afternoon at Hinson Lake in Rockingham, Hinton said he enjoys fishing there and takes an occasional trip to the Pee Dee River “if they’re biting.”

At Hinson Lake, Hinton angles for freshwater catfish and bream. He rarely goes home empty-handed, thus rarely ending his day at the pier hungry.

Although no fishing license is required, all other fishing regulations, such as size and creel limits and lure restrictions, still apply.

To give anglers a better chance of catching fish, the Commission stocks a variety of fish in waters across the state — including trout and channel catfish. The agency also provides access to fishing sites across the state, including public fishing areas and boating access areas. The interactive fishing and boating maps on the Commission’s website list more than 500 fishing and boating areas, many of which are free, that are open to the public.

Authorized by the N.C. General Assembly and started in 1994, North Carolina’s annual free fishing day always falls on July 4.

On all other days of the year, a fishing license is not required for anglers 15 years and younger, but anyone age 16 and older must have a fishing license to fish in any public water in North Carolina, including coastal waters. To purchase a license:

For more information on fishing in public, inland waters, visit the Fishing page.

Since 1947, the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission has been dedicated to the conservation and sustainability of the state’s fish and wildlife resources through research, scientific management, wise use, and public input. The Commission is the state regulatory agency responsible for the enforcement of fishing, hunting, trapping and boating laws and provides programs and opportunities for wildlife-related educational, recreational and sporting activities. To learn more, visit www.ncwildlife.org.

Get N.C. Wildlife Update — news including season dates, bag limits, legislative updates and more delivered free to your Inbox from the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission. Go towww.ncwildlife.org/enews.

Filed in: Featured News, Latest Headlines, Outdoors

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