The Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC is hosting free family fishing activities throughout northern BC this month.
The Learn to Fish programs offer introductory instruction for families. The Rod Loan program gives families a chance to explore fishing independently, allowing them to try fishing without buying gear.
Communications Coordinator Hayley Atkins explains the importance of getting kids involved.
“The main point of our Learn to Fish and Rod Loan programs is to reintroduce kids to the sport of fishing and have them feel more connected to the environment, and get them away from their screens and get them outside so that in the future they will want to take care of our freshwater resources.”
The Rod Loan program lets families borrow spinning rods with reels and a basic box of tackle for up to a week. Permanent Rod Loan locations include the Nechako White Sturgeon Conservation Centre, the Burns Lake Visitor Centre, and the Prince George Visitor Centre. Anglers over 16 years old must first purchase a freshwater fishing licence.
“Our main age demographic for the Learn to Fish and Rod Loan programs are youth ages five to 15,” explains Atkins.
“The reason that is is because when you’re 16 years old, you do need to purchase a freshwater fishing licence, so the best way to get kids out there for free is to have them under that licence purchasing age but if you have a freshwater fishing licence, you are welcome to join us for a program.”
Learn to Fish events are on a drop-in basis at provincial park locations. Pre-registration is required for programs in regional parks. Programs cover fish identification and biology, habitat and conservation, proper fish handling, ethics, safety, fishing regulations, fishing tackle, and knot-tying; with hands-on instruction including casting and retrieving. All equipment is provided and runs two hours, rain or shine.
Learn to Fish dates and locations:
- August 13 from 10am – 12pm at Beaumont Provincial Park in Fraser Lake
- August 14 from 4pm – 6pm at Ross Lake Provincial Park in New Hazelton
- August 15 from 10am – 12pm at Tyhee Lake Provincial Park
- August 16 from 10am – 12pm at Purden Lake Provincial Park
- August 16 from 12pm – 2pm at West Lake Provincial Park