4Reel Fishing: Have you purchased your fishing license yet?

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Great News! This week, California Department of Fish and Wildlife is stocking the Upper Blue Lake with a bunch of trout.(Photo contributed)

Greetings. It’s January. For anglers the first thing that comes to our minds for the month of January is that it is time to purchase our 2022 fishing license. And when it comes to this sour topic, there is a tid-bit of good news. 2022 will be the last year that California’s fishing licenses will be on a calendar year basis. So, what this means is that 2022 will be the last years the state of California will be able to rip off anglers. 2023 will be the first year that anglers can purchase a fishing license any month of the year and, it will be valid for 12 months from the purchase date.

Now for the bad news…The state of California has the most expensive fishing license in the nation! Woo- hoo? Just another not so great of a thing that our Golden State is number 1 in. You might being wondering how expensive is a freshwater, bare bones fishing license cost in California? Well, are you sitting down? Okay, here you go…$54.

I just can’t let go of this, not yet at least. I was reading a 2017 article from Trade Only magazine titled “High costs lead to drop in California fishing-license purchases.” Annual fishing license sales in California have dropped nearly 55 percent since 1980, according to the California Sportfishing League. The study found that California’s fishing licenses cost 76 percent more, compared with all states.

So, here is my thought on this….. If California’s Freshwater Sport Fishing License was reasonably priced, more people could see the value in them and would purchase them.. When Teresa and I are out on our waterway’s fishing we see people poaching all the time. I think many of these folks would purchase a fishing license if it was affordable. The stste of California should not continue to keep raking the price up every year to make up for lost revenue. To me this, this is just common sense.

Russian River- Sunshine and buttercups my fellow anglers! Yup, the drying out spell we are in right now has the steelhead fishermen talking about the big ones to be hooked. The stories are thick with “the ones that got away” and those that didn’t. As of late, green has become my favorite color. A green river means steelies are in the water. This is probably the best window of opportunity we have had so far this season. Go get ‘em! Before you know it, hopefully, it will be raining again.

Blue Lakes-Great News! This week, California Department of Fish and Wildlife is stocking the Upper Blue Lake with a bunch of trout. The early morning hours has been the best time to catch trout. Anglers that have been fishing from the shore along Hwy. 20 have also been catching fish. They have been using pink/orange Powerbait, and casting superdupers, and rooster tails. Trollers, also have been having some success. The trick has been to use down riggers at 20 to 25 feet. They have been using a flasher, chasing it with a fly. Try trolling in a circle, parallel to the shoreline on the Le Trianon side of the lake.

Thanks for reading and remember to keep it reel! – Don – 4REEL Fishin’

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