How Much Is a Fishing License in Colorado?

Attention anglers! The 2023-2024 Colorado fishing licenses are now available for purchase. Whether you’re a resident or non-resident, it’s essential to obtain the proper license before casting your line in Colorado’s abundant waters. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll cover the types of fishing licenses available, their costs, and how to purchase them.

Types of Colorado Fishing Licenses

Colorado offers several types of fishing licenses to cater to the needs of both resident and non-resident anglers:

  • Annual Fishing License: Valid from March 1, 2023, through March 31, 2024, this license allows you to fish for an entire year.
  • Short-Term Licenses: If you’re planning a shorter fishing trip, Colorado also offers 1-day and 5-day fishing licenses for both residents and non-residents.
  • Youth Licenses: Anglers under 16 years old can purchase a discounted annual or daily fishing license.
  • Senior Licenses: Colorado residents aged 65 and older can purchase a discounted annual fishing license.
  • Combo Licenses: Combine your fishing license with a small game hunting license for added value.

Colorado Fishing License Fees

To help you plan your fishing adventures, here’s a breakdown of the 2023-2024 Colorado fishing license fees:

License TypeResident FeeNon-Resident Fee
Annual Fishing$39.71$111.03
1-Day Fishing$15.55$19.01
5-Day Fishing (Non-Resident Only)N/A$36.26
Youth Annual Fishing (Ages 16-17)$10.23$16.22
Senior Annual Fishing (Ages 65+)$29.46N/A
Combo Annual Fishing & Small Game$54.75$126.07

Note: All prices include the $1.50 Wildlife Council surcharge and the $0.25 Search and Rescue fee, where applicable.

In addition to your fishing license, you’ll need to purchase a $12.15 Habitat Stamp with your first license of the season. This stamp helps fund wildlife habitat conservation efforts across the state.

How to Purchase a Colorado Fishing License

You can easily purchase your Colorado fishing license online, by phone, or in person:

  1. Online: Visit the Colorado Parks & Wildlife website and follow the prompts to purchase your license.
  2. By Phone: Call 1-800-244-5613 to purchase your license over the phone.
  3. In Person: Visit a local Colorado Parks & Wildlife office or any authorized sales agent, such as sporting goods stores or bait shops.

When purchasing your license, be prepared to provide your personal information, including your name, address, date of birth, and social security number.

Colorado Fishing Regulations & Seasons

Before heading out on your fishing trip, familiarize yourself with Colorado’s fishing regulations and seasons:

  • Fishing Seasons: Most Colorado waters are open to fishing year-round, but some areas may have seasonal closures or restrictions. Always check the Colorado Fishing Regulations for specific details.
  • Bag Limits: Be aware of daily bag and possession limits for each species of fish. These limits help maintain healthy fish populations.
  • Size Restrictions: Some fish species have minimum or maximum size limits. Measure your catch carefully and release any fish that don’t meet the requirements.
  • Catch and Release: When practicing catch and release, handle fish gently and return them to the water as quickly as possible to minimize stress and injury.

Why You Need a Colorado Fishing License

Purchasing a fishing license is not only required by law, but it also helps support Colorado’s fisheries and conservation efforts. The funds generated from license sales go towards:

  • Stocking fish in lakes and rivers
  • Improving fish habitat
  • Conducting research and surveys
  • Enhancing angler access and opportunities

By obtaining a valid fishing license, you’re contributing to the long-term sustainability of Colorado’s world-class fisheries.


With your Colorado fishing license in hand, you’re ready to explore the state’s diverse fishing opportunities. From high mountain lakes to rushing rivers and peaceful reservoirs, Colorado offers an unforgettable angling experience for everyone. Remember to always fish responsibly, follow regulations, and practice good stewardship to ensure that these resources remain available for generations to come.

Can I purchase a Colorado fishing license online?

Yes, you can conveniently purchase your Colorado fishing license online through the Colorado Parks & Wildlife web shop. Licenses can be bought 24/7 and printed at home for immediate use.

How much does a senior fishing license cost in Colorado?

Colorado residents aged 65 and above are eligible for a significantly reduced annual license rate of $10.23. Proof of age and residency is required to qualify for this discounted license.

Do I need additional permits along with my Colorado fishing license?

Yes, in addition to your standard fishing license, you may need to purchase an annual habitat stamp ($11.50) and an extra rod stamp ($12.68) if you plan to fish with more than one rod at a time.

Can I fish in Colorado without a license?

In limited circumstances, such as for children under 16, during free fishing weekends, or for qualifying active-duty military personnel, anglers may fish without purchasing a standard license. However, in all other situations, fishing without a valid license can result in penalties and fines.

When do Colorado fishing licenses expire?

All annual Colorado fishing licenses, regardless of the purchase date, expire on March 31st of the following year. Temporary 1-day and 5-day licenses are valid only for the specified date(s) selected during purchase.

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