Fishing is a beloved pastime in Colorado, offering anglers the opportunity to explore the state’s pristine waters and revel in the thrill of the catch. However, before you can cast your line, you need to obtain a valid fishing license. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll dive into the various discounts and fee waivers available for Colorado fishing licenses, ensuring that you can enjoy this cherished outdoor activity without breaking the bank.

Colorado Fishing License Types and Fees

To understand the discounts and waivers, let’s first explore the different types of fishing licenses available in Colorado and their corresponding fees:

Resident Licenses

  • Annual Fishing License (Ages 18-64): $41.83
  • Senior Fishing License (Ages 65+): $11.47
  • Youth Fishing License (Ages 16-17): $11.47
  • One-Day Fishing License: $16.33
  • Additional Day Fishing License: $7.82
  • Centennial Program (Income-Eligible Seniors): $10 for a lifetime fishing license

Non-Resident Licenses

  • Annual Fishing License: $117.14
  • Five-Day Fishing License: $38.19
  • One-Day Fishing License: $19.97
  • Additional Day Fishing License: $11.28

Additional Fees and Stamps

  • Habitat Stamp (Ages 18-64): $12.15 (required with the purchase of the first fishing license of the season)
  • Lifetime Habitat Stamp: $364.63
  • Aquatic Nuisance Species Stamp (Residents): $25
  • Aquatic Nuisance Species Stamp (Non-Residents): $41.83
  • Second Rod Stamp: $12.68 (required to use a second fishing rod)

Discounts and Fee Waivers

Now that we’ve covered the license types and fees, let’s explore the various discounts and fee waivers available to make fishing more accessible to certain groups of anglers.

Free Fishing Weekend

Every year, Colorado hosts a free fishing weekend during the first full weekend of June. During this period, anyone can fish in the state’s public waters without a fishing license. However, all other regulations still apply.

Youth Exemption

Children under the age of 16 do not need a fishing license in Colorado. They can fish for free with one rod.

Disabled Anglers

Permanently disabled Colorado residents can apply for a free lifetime fishing license. Additionally, military veterans with a service-connected disability rating of 60% or more can obtain a lifetime combination small game and fishing license.

First Responders

First responders with a permanent occupational disability can qualify for a combination small game and fishing license through the First Responders Program.

Centennial Program

The Centennial Program offers a lifetime fishing license for just $10 to income-eligible resident seniors.

Military Personnel

Colorado residents on active duty for the military can fish for 30 days without a license while on leave, as long as they carry their leave papers.

Purchasing Fishing Licenses

Colorado offers several convenient options for purchasing fishing licenses:

  • Online: Licenses can be purchased through the Colorado Parks and Wildlife website and printed immediately.
  • Phone: Call 1-800-244-5613 to purchase a license over the phone.
  • In-Person: Visit any Colorado Parks and Wildlife office or authorized sales agent, such as sporting goods stores, to purchase a license in person.

Fishing Regulations and Conservation Efforts

While obtaining a fishing license is essential, it’s equally important to familiarize yourself with Colorado’s fishing regulations. These regulations vary depending on the water body and the type of fish you’re targeting. They include bag and possession limits, fishing seasons, prohibited methods, and special regulations for designated “Gold Medal Waters.”

By adhering to these regulations, anglers contribute to the conservation efforts aimed at protecting Colorado’s rich aquatic habitats and ensuring sustainable fishing opportunities for future generations. The funds generated from fishing license sales support various initiatives, such as fish stocking, habitat improvement projects, and public access programs.


Fishing in Colorado is a truly remarkable experience, offering anglers the opportunity to explore the state’s breathtaking natural landscapes while pursuing their passion. By understanding the different types of fishing licenses, their costs, and the available discounts and fee waivers, you can ensure that you’re fully prepared for your next fishing adventure in Colorado. Remember to always carry your valid fishing license, respect the regulations, and practice responsible angling to help preserve Colorado’s aquatic resources for generations to come.

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