Wisconsin waiving park admissions, fishing licenses and trail passes this weekend
The public is invited to take advantage of Wisconsin’s 11th annual Free Fun Weekend happening from June 3-4 as the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) waives fees for park admissions, fishing licenses and trail passes.
The Wisconsin DNR said all Wisconsin residents and non-residents are invited to the state’s more than 50 state parks, 15 state forests, 44 state trails, 84,000 miles of rivers and streams as well as about 15,000 lakes.
DNR Bureau Director of Parks and Recreation Management Steve Schmelzer said in a statement that “Free Fun Weekend is always a great opportunity for the DNR property crews to welcome summer visitors back. If you’ve never visited a state park, forest, trail or recreation area, this is the perfect weekend to find your outdoor adventure.”
More information on state park activities, properties, maps and how to reserve a shelter or campsite can be found on the DNR’s website.
The DNR also shared the following things visitors should know before heading out:
- Vehicle admission stickers will not be required.
- All state parks and trails will be open from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m.
- Programs and events are posted online at the DNR’s website.
- All linear/rail trails will be open to the public, including ATV trails and horseback riding trails.
- ATV, UTVs and OHMs are exempt from registration requirements. Resident and non-resident all-terrain vehicle operators do not need a trail pass to ride state ATV trails.
- Residents and non-residents will not be required to have a fishing license or trout/salmon stamps.
- All 2023-2024 fishing regulations apply, including bag and length limits.
- This is the perfect time of year for small and largemouth bass, panfish and northern pike to be active.
- New to fishing? Check out free clinics hosted at state properties.
- Locate launches and shore fishing access points near you.
- All DNR boat launches are open.
- Boats must be registered, which can be done either online or via mail.
- Minimize the spread of aquatic invasive species by removing plants and animals from boats before and after launching, draining all water from compartments, and never move live fish from any waterbody.
- Always wear a life jacket when fishing from a boat, kayak, canoe or paddleboard.
- Use boat lights after sunset.
- Never consume alcohol or drugs before or during an ATV ride or while operating a boat.
- Wear a helmet and protective clothing such as eye protection, gloves, long pants, and a long-sleeved shirt while riding an ATV.
- All children under the age of 18 must have a minimum Department of Transportation standard motorcycle or ATV helmet – bicycle helmets are not legal.
- Keep your speed in mind as weather and terrain conditions vary or change.