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Fish for free this weekend

Saturday and Sunday mark the 19th annual Free Fishing Weekend in Oregon, where people can test-drive angling at a variety of events without buying license.

Participants can fish, crab or clam without licenses as long as they adhere to all other angling rules and limitations. Also, the U.S. Forest Service and the Oregon State Parks Department all offer free camping Saturday, while the federal Bureau of Land Management waives day-use fees at places like Hyatt Lake.

Here are the official events for Jackson and Josephine counties:

  • FISH LAKE - 9 a.m. to noon. The U.S. Forest Service-sponsored event is at the CCC shelter in the day-use area.
  • HYATT LAKE - BLM Campground, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. This event includes no day-use fees for the weekend. There is a charge for camping this year and reservations should be made through the web at www.recreation.gov. The United Hunters and Sportsmen will offer free breakfast at the group shelter area both Saturday and Sunday from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m. For more information, call 541-618-2281.
  • LOST CREEK LAKE - Lost Creek Lake Marina, 9 a.m. to noon. Sponsored by Oregon State Parks, this event offers prizes, free bait, and limited loaner rods and reels, but anglers are encouraged to bring their own gear. For more information, call 541-560-3334.
  • LAKE SELMAC - 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Josephine County's only Free Fishing Weekend event is sponsored by the Middle Rogue Steelheaders. Rods and reels are available for loan and bait is provided. For more information, telephone 541-295-1682.

— Mark Freeman