The foremost step to fishing in Utah is to get your license done according to your age, fishing location, how often you are planning to go fishing, and whether you are a resident or a non-resident. It is strongly encouraged to follow the fishing laws in utah and guidelines to get started with fishing.

License Requirements:

Free Fishing

Utah people get to celebrate that one day on June 12, 2021, to go fishing without any license. The day is known as Free Fishing Day and anyone residing in Utah can go out for fishing. However, rules and laws still apply to all of the other states.

Children Under 12 years

No license is required for children who are under the age of 12. Go out for a full-day fishing limit with two poles and a setline.

12 years and older

You must have a license to start fishing in Utah if you are 12 years or older. The state offers a variety of licensing options to let you choose according to your requirements. These include:

  • 3 days fishing license: The license gives a permit to fish for 3 consecutive days.
  • 1-week fishing license: Getting this license allows you to go fishing for 7 consecutive days.
  • 1-year fishing license: This license is for people who are looking forward to fishing for 365 consecutive days including the day license is purchased.
  • Multi-year fishing license: This allows you to fish for up to 5 years
  • Combination fishing license: This is a 1-year license that permits hunting small games, fish, and apply for a 5-year hunting permit.
  • Special license: Utah residents who have certain mental and physical disabilities are eligible for a free fishing license.

Note that you must always carry a license when fishing and any kind of alteration or transfer is strictly prohibited. To avoid hassle carrying a license, you can legally carry your fishing licenses on your phone or tablet by downloading an app.

License that are purchased are partly spent for the welfare and development of fishing sport for future generations.

Fish you are not allowed to possess:

Utah fishing laws have restricted the procession of the stated nongame fish:

  • Bluehead sucker
  • Grass crap
  • Least club
  • Round tail chub
  • Virgin chub
  • Colorado pikeminnow
  • Razorback sucker
  • Woundfin
  • Southern leather side chub
  • Gizzard shad
  • Flannel mouth sucker
  • Virgin spinedace
  • June sucker
  • Bony tail

Restrictions imposed on fishing in Utah:

  • You are not permitted to use artificial light while underwater spearfishing. Exceptions include for crap (anywhere in Utah) and burbot spearfishing at Flaming George.
  • Use of any chemical, poison, electricity, pellet gun, or explosive is strictly prohibited to take fish or crayfish. 
  • You can only acquire a fish if it’s hooked in the mouth only. A fish that is hooked otherwhere else must be released. Exception places include: Bear Lake, Lake Powell, and any waterbody with catch-and-kill regulations.

Setline Fishing 

Fishing laws in utah

Get a setline fishing permit for only $20 from the official website, local licensed agents, or Division offices. Generally, the setline fishing permit is a 365-days permit. To avail this license, you will need a 3 or 7 or 365-day, or multi-year unexpired Utah fishing or combination license if you are of 12 years or older. The license applies to the following rivers only:

  • Utah Lake
  • Little Bear
  • Bear River proper
  • Malad River

Rules for Setline Fishing:

  • Only one setline should be used while fishing
  • Up to 15 hooks is permissible for a setline
  • You must be in reach of 100 yards of water or surface while setline fishing
  • A distinct tag containing your personal information and permit number must be attached to your setline.
  • You can also fish with up to 2 fishing poles beside the setline.

Rules and regulations of particular fish species in Utah:


  • No license is required for children under 12
  • A valid fishing license or a combination license is required for 12 years and older
  • When there’s an open fishing season, people are allowed to take crayfish for personal or non-commercial purposes. If the fishing season is closed, you may not take any crayfish.
  • Any use of illegal substance or gamefish is restricted 
  • Seins must be up to 10 feet in size.
  • Transportation of crayfish away from the water body is not permissible.

Nongame Fish

  • Except for the listed prohibited fish, you may acquire nongame fish if anyone possesses a valid Utah fishing or combination license.
  • Use of angle, archery, seines, dipnets, traps, and handheld spear is permitted from above the surface
  • You may not leave any fish on the shoreline. It must be killed or released immediately after removing from water.

Brine Shrimp

  • You may take a brine fish without a license but it limits to one gallon in a 7-day.


  • What is the daily fishing limit in Utah?

Trouts, salmons, grayling, hybrids, and brook trouts have a daily limit of 4 fish. Nongame species (except prohibited fish) and crayfish have no limitations. Bluegill and green sunfish (a combined total), Crappie, and Yellow perch have a limit of 50 per day. Largemouth and smallmouth bass (combined), Northern pike, Wiper has a limit of 6.

  • How much fishing license in Utah cost?

Fishing License



1-year fishing (age 12–13)



1-year fishing (age 14–17)



1-year fishing (age 18–64)



Multi-year license



1-year fishing (age 65 and older)



Resident 3-day fishing



Resident 7-day fishing



  • Is live bait used in Utah?

Live baitfish is strictly restricted in Utah. You can not transport the baitfish live in any way.

  • Can I fish without a license in Utah?

No, you may be penalized up to $1,000.00 or six months in jail.

You Can Also Read: Fishing Guide for Beginners

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