Free access to state parks, trails, fishing*

balanced_rock_devils_lake-225x300It started out as a Free Fishing Weekend, and it has expanded to include state parks and trails.
Whether it’s birding, bike riding, horseback riding, fishing, or hiking, now’s your chance to do it for free at any of Wisconsin’s state parks.
Ed Culhane with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources says residents or visitors to Wisconsin can access state parks and trails this weekend without having to pay an admission fee. “There are lots of activities going on in the parks or if you just wanna go in and fish for the day … or just walk the trails … or you wanna spend time on the beach.” Culhane notes, “I think it’s gonna be nice and warm Saturday. Any of that is free … enjoy the beautiful parks.”
Though, Culhane says, if camping is your interest, you’ll need to pay for campsite registration — and call ahead to make sure there are available campsites because they book far in advance. Folks can also fish without a license on Saturday and Sunday.
Roger Putnam, president of the Friends of Wisconsin State Parks, encourages more people to enjoy — and maintain — our natural resources. “We have to be more proactive in our approach in getting people to go to parks. Anything we can do that alerts people to the resource … encourage them to come out, whether it’s free weekends or Earth Day activities.”
Approximately 15 million outdoor lovers visit Wisconsin state parks each year.
*June 6, 2014 By Jackie Johnson