ODFW has recently relocated several fishing equipment lending libraries to public libraries in Lincoln City, Toledo and Newport along the central Oregon coast. Kids in these communities will have access to everything they need to get started with recreational fishing at the libraries. Each library is stocked with rods and reels that can be checked out for up to two weeks, plus starter tackle kits that kids can keep. Each library also has five practice poles that are designed for indoor or outdoor casting practice by younger anglers. These poles are outfitted with rubber casting plugs that are used to reel in plastic fish that are also available at the fishing libraries.
The libraries are also stocked with free informational materials including the ODFW publication Easy Angling Oregon, Oregon’s common salmon and trout identification cards, and instructions on how to clean and keep your catch. Funding for the lending libraries was provided by ODFW’s Salmon and Trout Enhancement Program.
“Many kids’ activities have been cancelled due to Covid-19 and families are spending more time outdoors instead,” said Christine Clapp, ODFW fish biologist in Newport. “We don’t want the lack of equipment to be a barrier to any child who wants to go fishing.”
Lincoln County also has a small community of ODFW certified angler education instructors who are available to help. If families would like assistance learning how to fish, they can request help from ODFW’s Salmon and Trout Enhancement Program (Christine.M.Clapp@state.or.us, 541-961-6386). Lessons will be provided on a first come first served basis, and participants and instructors will wear masks when social distancing can’t be maintained.
Youth fishing equipment is available for curbside check-out using a library card at the following locations and times. All participants will need a parent or guardian to sign a liability waiver prior to borrowing equipment. Call to reserve your gear; equipment must be ordered prior to pick-up. If you prefer to reserve online, try searching fishing rod in the library catalog.
- Driftwood Public Library, 801 SW Hwy 101 #201, Lincoln City, 541-996-2277
- Monday – Friday from 1 – 5 p.m.
- Toledo Public Library, 173 NW 7th St, Toledo, 541-336-3132
- Tuesday, Thursday, Friday from 10 a.m. – noon and 3 – 5 p.m.
- Newport Public Library, 35 NW Nye St, Newport, 541-265-2153
- Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday from noon – 5:30 p.m.
As a reminder, children 11 and under do not need an angling license to go fishing in Oregon. Youth 12 and over must have a valid youth license, which can be purchased for $10 at www.myODFW.com and covers fishing, hunting and shellfish along with the Columbia River Basin Endorsement. Adults who are interested in learning to fish and don’t have access to equipment may be able to check-out equipment starting in mid-September, after we have a better idea of youth participation.
For more information about this program or to request help from an angler education instructor, email Christine.M.Clapp@state.or.us or call 541-961-6386.