What state has over 11,800 streams and rivers, and more than 1,700 lakes? If you guessed Oregon you are correct – those are some impressive numbers. Factor in the saltwater fishing along it hundreds of miles of Pacific coastline and it’s clear the fishing opportunities in Oregon are abundant. If you want to fish the Deschutes River, the Columbia River, or any other OR waters you’ll need to familiarize yourself with their fishing regulations and fishing license requirements. And that’s what we’ll be discussing here.

Oregon Fishing Regulations

The State of Oregon states:

  • You may not use more than one rod or line
  • You most closely attend you’re rods or lines
  • You may not use gurdies, winches or reels affixed to a boat to land fish (rod or line must be held in hand) except when used to retrieve crab rings or pots
  • You may not use drones/unmanned vehicles when angling
  • You may not snag or attempt to snag gamefish
  • You may not angle through a human-made ice hole that is larger than 12 inches
  • You may not take or attempt to take any fish by chumming, or knowingly angle with the help of chum (there are some exceptions)
  • You may not continue to angle for the same type of fish after catching and retaining a bag or possession limit (there are some exceptions)
  • You may not continue to angle for jack salmon after reaching a daily bag limit of adult salmon
  • You may not catch all or part of another person’s bag limit (there are some exceptions)
  • You may not buy or sell fish or shellfish, or parts of them, that were caught or taken for personal use (there are some exceptions)
  • You may not keep any undersized, oversized, prohibited species or unwanted fish or shellfish
  • You may not waste fish, shellfish or marine intertidal invertebrates
  • You may not dispose of a fish carcass into waters other than where the fish was caught. Although Anglers must retain enough of the carcass to identify the size, species and any fin clip
  • You may not take a fish with a radio tag (unless in the mainstream Columbia River and its tributaries)
  • You may not remove from streams, carcasses or parts of salmon and steelhead unless taken legally
  • You may not angle on private land without permission
  • You may not trespass on a fishway, weir or fish trap, or angling within 200 feet above and 200 feet below a weir or the entrance/exit of a private or public fishway or fish trap
  • You may not take or attempt to take fish from state or federal hatchery facilities
  • You must give the Department any part of a salmon or other fish containing coded-wire tags, for example the snouts of salmon that have been marked with adipose fin clips
  • You may not attach a tag or physical mark to any fish in Oregon waters without a scientific taking permit (there are some exceptions)
  • You must allow ODFW employees, peace officers or landowners to inspect license, catch and gear (by purchasing a license or tag a person consents to these inspections)

Fishing License Period

Oregon fishing licenses are available as:

  • Daily fishing licenses
  • Annual fishing licenses
  • Lifetime fishing licenses

Free or Reduced Fee Oregon Fishing Licenses

The State of Oregon offers free fishing licenses or reduced fishing licenses for :

  • A resident 65 years old or older (for pioneer license)
  • A Resident disabled veteran
  • A resident 70 years old or older (for senior citizen license)

Oregon Fishing Licenses Are NOT Required For

If you are under the age of 12 you aren’t required to have a fishing license in Oregon.

Buy an Oregon Fishing License