Utah is a quite dense state, featuring all major geographical areas, from arid deserts to pine forests. Utah is also the home of numerous popular ski resorts due to its temperate climate. It is also the state of contrasts, with plenty semi-arid and desert climate places, as well as rainy parts and cold winters.
The state’s largest city, Salt Lake City, is also located near the largest lake in the area, the Great Salt Lake, which was also called America’s Dead Sea.
Believe it or not, Utah provides plenty accommodation and fishing opportunities for avid fishermen, so you should give this state a chance on your next fishing trip. If you already planned a trip here and you want to know more about the local fishing regulations, here is everything important you need to be aware of.
Licenses and permits
Just like any other state, Utah offers its own licenses and fishing permits for different costs for residents and nonresidents.
By comparison to other states, Utah’s fees are slightly larger, but it is also because the fishing possibilities are more reduced. A year-round fishing license for people ages 18-64 is $34 for residents and $75 for nonresidents, whereas a combination license for nonresidents over 18 years old will cost you $85.
Nonresidents also have the possibility of purchasing a three-day fishing license for $24 or a seven-day fishing license for $40. We suggest opting for the three-day permit if you are only planning a small trip to Utah, at least until you get used to the local regulations and fishing options.
Children under the age of 12 do not require a fishing permit in Utah, so it is highly convenient to teach your kids how to fish from young ages.
You must have your fishing license with you all the times if you want to enjoy the rich waters in Utah. However, you can now easily obtain your fishing license on your mobile phone as well, to make sure you will always have it with you.
It is prohibited to possess any of the following fish: bonytail, bluehead sucker, Colorado pikeminnow, Flannelmouth sucker, Gizzard shad, grass carp, humpback chub, June sucker, least chub, roundtail chub, razorback sucker, virgin chub, virgin spinedace or woundfin. If you happen to catch any of these species, you must release them immediately.
You must remain within 100 yards from your fishing equipment.
If you are under the age of 12 or possess a valid Utah fishing license, you can only fish using two poles during the open fishing season. However, you are not entitled to keep more than one daily limit of fish, no matter if you use one pole or two poles.
You are not allowed to ice fish through a hole wider than 12 inches, except at Bear Lake, Flaming Gorge Reservoir, and Fish Lake.
During the open fishing season, you may use a variety of methods for fishing carp, including angling, archery, dip nets, cast nets, traps, seins, crossbow, underwater spearfishing, and others. Artificial lights are also permitted if you bow-fish for carp.
Daily fish limits
Depending on the type of fish, you may be allowed to possess a larger or smaller quantity of fish in all natural waters in Utah. For instance, you are only entitled to 8 channel catfish daily, while crappies, bluegill and green sunfish can count for 50 items. There is no limit for crayfish, white bass, and striped bass.
You are only entitled to 4 pieces of Kokanee salmon, but not between September and end of November.
Free fishing days
Unlike other states, Utah doesn’t offer a full free fishing weekend or week, but only one day per year. In 2020, the free fishing day was on June 10. During this day all residents and nonresidents are allowed to fish in all state waters without requiring a fishing permit or license.