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Bluegills on Brittingham Bay in Madison

Bluegills on Brittingham Bay in Madison.

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Theresa Stabo
Aquatic resources educator

Fishing Wisconsin - Angler & aquatic education Free Fishing Weekend - January 17-18, 2015

Bundle up and get out there for Wisconsin's Winter Free Fishing Weekend, January 17 - 18, 2015. Residents and nonresidents are welcome!

Ice Fishing Girls just want to have fun! Call up a friend and plan an adventure!

Fish anywhere in Wisconsin without a license or trout stamp on Free Fishing Weekend. This includes all inland waters and Wisconsin's side of the Great Lakes and Mississippi River. Other fishing rules apply, such as limits on the number and size of fish you can keep and any seasons when you must release certain fish species. So, pack up the family or call your friends and head to the water for fishing fun!

Host a Free Fishing Weekend event!

Just fill out and return this Winter Free Fishing Weekend Planning Form [PDF] by January 9, 2015 and you'll be good to go! Details are on the form. Remember to plan for adults who may have missed the fishing boat as kids! We'll post your events on the DNR website as we learn of them.

Need fishing gear?

No ice fishing gear? No problem. We have ice fishing tip-ups and jigging rods you can borrow at many state parks and DNR offices. You will need to either use your own ice auger, claim an abandoned hole, or better yet -- make friends with the anglers next to you and get them to drill you a hole or let you borrow their auger. Check out the map, [exit DNR] to see where DNR Ice Fishing Tackle Loaner sites are located. Call the DNR staffer listed for each site to find out what specific equipment is available and to arrange to pick it up and use it.

Get a license

New to fishing, but want to make it a habit after Free Fishing Weekend? Try our "First-time buyer" resident license for only $5. Discounts for non-residents too!

Here is a handy chart with more information about purchasing a fishing license so you'll be ready to fish for the rest of the year!

Flag up!

For additional ice fishing information, check out ice fishing in Wisconsin.

Last revised: Monday November 17 2014