Father’s Day weekend offers more than a time to salute Dad, it’s also B.C.’s Family Fishing Weekend!
After all, what better way to spend a little quality time together than with an annual celebration of fishing, held this year from June 18 to 20. During the three-day event, Canadian residents – those who have lived in Canada for the preceding 12 months – can go fishing without a licence.
During the annual event, sponsored by the Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC, Habitat Conservation Trust Fund and the Pacific Salmon Foundation, the Province waives the requirement for residents to buy or carry a non-tidal (freshwater) basic licence during the third weekend in June, and the Friday immediately prior.
The federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans Canada, which manages tidal fishing, also offers the opportunity to go saltwater fishing for free.
The weekend does carry some exceptions:
If you plan to fish for species that require a conservation surcharge stamp – steelhead, Shuswap Lake rainbow trout and char, Kootenay Lake rainbow trout, white sturgeon, and salmon in both tidal and non-tidal waters – or angle Classified Waters (highly productive trout streams; listed as Class I or Class II waters in the water-specific tables of the fishing regulations) you are still required to purchase the appropriate licence(s) and conservation surcharge stamps.
As well, anglers must still adhere to catch quotas and regulations. Make sure you have read and understood the Freshwater Fishing Regulations Synopsis so that you know where you can go fishing, and which fish species you can catch.
Family-Friendly Community Events
During BC’s Family Fishing Weekend, free fishing events for anglers and families are typically held around the province, with knowledgeable volunteers often on-hand to teach you the tricks of the trade. However, due to COVID-19, events have gone online with the the Society and the B.C. Wildlife Federation host a day of free workshops for all ages. Topics include learn to fish lessons, lure making, fly-tying, door prizes and more!
The Family Fishing Webinar Series runs June 12 from 9am to 4pm:
- 9 to 9:40am – It’s A Trout Life
- 10 to 11am – Learn to Fish Families
- 11am to 12pm – Lure Making
- 12 to 1pm – Hatchery Tour
- 1 to 2pm – Learn to Fish Adults
- 2 to 3 – Fly Tying
- 3 to 4 – Fishing Ethics and Etiquette
All participants must pre-register HERE.
Resources for Anglers
Keen to learn more about fishing in British Columbia? For tips on setting up your rod, and basic techniques such as float and bottom fishing, visit our blog or YouTube channel. There’s even a Beginner’s Learn to Fish Guide available for download.
To find a fishing spot, visit the interactive Where to Fish map, showing all lakes stocked with fish in BC.
Plan your future adventures throughout the West Coast at westcoasttraveller.com and follow us on Facebook and Instagram @thewestcoasttraveller. And for the top West Coast Travel stories of the week delivered right to your inbox, sign up for our weekly Armchair Traveller newsletter!