Have you always wanted to go fishing in national parks? Going fishing in Yellowstone surrounded by wildlife, or fishing in Yosemite, with Half Dome as your back drop sound like the ideal way to experience the parks.
The national parks system has a huge variety of rivers, lakes, and streams—meaning there are plenty of opportunities to throw in a line during your next vacation. Finding good fishing in national parks can be a challenge, especially with the widespread increase in outdoor recreation. This summer, try exploring these five gems not typically known for their fishing.
Rules and Regulations for Fishing in National Parks
Make sure to research the fishing regulations of the places you intend to visit, and confirm whether or not you will need a state license, fishing permit, boat permit, stamps, or something else entirely before you begin, as laws vary greatly by location. Some parks may even impose limits on how many fish a single angler can catch in one day, as dwindling fish populations in recent years have encouraged more stringent measures. The National Parks Service is a great resource for any of
Dry Tortugas National Park, Florida
Photo by Ricardo Braham
Dry Tortugas National Park was originally named for the turtles discovered there by Ponce de Leon on his exploration to the “new” world. Today, Dry Tortugas National Park teems with marine life and opportunities to reel in your next big catch. Grab a boat permit and a Florida Saltwater Fishing License before heading out onto the water, and avoid the Research Natural Area where fishing is not allowed.
Fishing in Yosemite National Park, California
Photo by Tanya Nevidoma
While Yosemite is better known these days for its iconic climbing, you can fish in the park’s lakes and reservoirs year-round. Those massive stony backdrops provide the perfect spot for some excellent rainbow and brown trout fishing. The streams and rivers are only open from April through mid-November. You’ll need a fishing license from the state of California if you are over 16. Catch and release fishing is most common here, and there are seasonal limitations to how many fish you can take home with you. Yosemite does not allow bait fishing.
Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
Photo by Hunter Brumels
For first-rate fishing in a national park, visit America’s first park. Cast your line in one of its sparkling rivers and the trout will practically falling onto your line. Fishing in Yellowstone is not only scenic, but affords opportunities to see other wildlife as well. Keep in mind that there are limits on the kind and number of fish you can decide to hold onto each day, and barbed hooks are not allowed. Don’t forget your bear spray!
Little Piney Creek Blue Ribbon Area, Missouri
Photo by Greysen Johnson
While not technically a national park, blue ribbon fisheries are those areas designated as being the best of the best. At Little Piney Creek, you’ll find an abundance of trout some of the most beautiful, wooded fishing areas around. Montana, Utah, and Michigan also have blue-ribbon fisheries.
Lake Powell, Utah and Arizona
Photo by Greysen Johnson
For an iconic experience nestled in magnificent red desert rocks, take a trip to Lake Powell in Utah and Arizona. Explore the lengthy coastline to find your next catch, or rent a boat from their marina.
If you still need help deciding on the perfect location for your American fishing trip, contact our national park experts with any questions. Get ready to fish the day away!