Fish for free in North Carolina on Fourth of July

North Carolina news

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — On July 4, anyone in North Carolina, regardless of age, can enjoy one of the state’s best outdoor activities for free.

Free Fishing Day, which runs from 12 a.m. until 11:59 p.m., offers residents and out-of-state visitors the opportunity to fish without having to purchase a license; however, all other fishing regulations apply, such as length and daily possession limits, as well as bait and tackle restrictions.

North Carolina’s annual free fishing day, which always falls on July 4, was created to promote the sport of fishing.  

“Free Fishing Day is a great opportunity for families to enjoy some quality time together on the water,” said Christian Waters, the agency’s chief of the Inland Fisheries Division. “Fishing is an inexpensive activity that anyone, no matter what their age or skill level, can enjoy.” 

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.

Also, because of COVID-19, the Commission recommends maintaining a social distance of at least 6 feet between you and others while on the boat ramp, on beaches or islands, or when rafting up with other boaters. Read more social distancing while boating safety tips

While anyone can fish for free on July 4, on all other days of the year, a fishing license is required for people age 16 and older, in order to fish in any public water in North Carolina, including coastal waters. 

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