The Roundup -

FWP's "Kids To Fish" Program Allows Youths To Borrow Gear & Tackle For Free

 

A popular Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks Region 6 program that allows children and their families to check out free fishing rods and tackle is in full swing again this year.

Just in time for summer fishing, FWP staff is in the process of restocking the 49 (and counting) different location sites across Montana's Hi-Line. The "Kids to Fish" program lets youngsters check out fishing rods and reels and basic tackle, such as hooks, bobbers, and sinkers. Typically, eight rods are at each location, and a tackle box is available to borrow/use the available tackle.

Nationally known rod and reel manufacturers and tackle retailers, D & G Sports & Western in Glasgow, and Stromberg's Sinclair and the North 40 Outfitters store in Havre give FWP substantial discounts that help keep the program sustainable.

FWP Region 6 Information and Education intern Randy Hopkins, a senior at Montana State University in Bozeman, has been busy maintaining the gear and helping resupply the sites this month. "Just because someone doesn't have a fishing rod doesn't mean they shouldn't be able to go fishing," Randy said. "Whether it's a cousin in town that wants to go fishing, or just an extra pole is needed for catfishing on the Milk River, we want as many kids as possible to be able to go out and fish."

"The many business owners and other folks who participate in the program deserve special thanks," adds Marc Kloker, Region 6 Information and Education Program Manager. "They're helping a lot of kids have fun on the water this summer."

The sturdy loaner rods come already rigged with bobbers, split-shot and hooks. Youngsters are required to sign out the equipment at the site and return it in good working order within a reasonable amount of time. Please remember that these rods are to be BROUGHT BACK to the loaner location, even if damaged. If poles are continually lost or stolen, the program will need to make the necessary changes and location sites may be removed.

More than 400 fishing rods are available to be checked out from the outlets by individuals, families, organizations, church groups and schools. If you have any questions about the program, or are interested in having poles available at other locations in your community, please contact Kloker at 406-228-3704. Visit fwp.mt.gov to learn more and see where fishing rods and tackle are currently available.

 

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