Colorado Fishing License

Colorado Fishing License
Information for 2019 – 2020

Colorado Fishing Licenses are required if you are 16 or older.  The 2019 license year is April 1 to March 31 next year. (Ex 4/1/2019 – 3/31/2020)  Fishing licenses for the next year become available for purchase on March 15th each year.  Important information about License Refunds, Reissues and Exchanges

To download the 2019 regulation brochure (Includes Property Descriptions) Right click and “Save Target As”.   A hard copy of the brochure is available at all CPW Offices and license agents statewide Free Adobe Acrobat Reader Download (to view PDFs) 

NOTICE: Please take time to read over the Special Conditions and Restrictions in the brochure.
This page has full fishing, hunting and habitat stamp information >> The 2019 License Fees

DISCLAIMER: The following information is believed to be correct to the State Regulation but is not guaranteed. Read the 2019 Regulation Brochure for complete answers.


Fees Effective Apr. 1, 2019

Fishing License Colorado Add $10 for Habitat StampResidentNonresident
Fishing – annual 18 – 64 Resident (only then 65+ applies)  Non-Resident price applies to over 65
Fishing Youth 16 & 17
Extra Rod Stamp10.7510.75
Fishing – 1 day13.7516.75
Additional 1 day fishing6.756.75
Fishing – 5 daysNot Available31.75
Senior Annual Fishing 65+ Yrs and Older9.75Colo Residents Only
Youth (under 16) — Can take a full bag and possession limit without a licenseFREE 
Combination Small Game & Fishing (If born after 1948, you must show hunter education card)49.75Not Available
*Fees include a 25¢ Search and Rescue Fee and a 75¢ PEAC surcharge. see below For persons between 18 and 64, a $10 Habitat Stamp will be added to 1st 2017 license purchase of the license year.


Wildlife Public Education Advisory Council (PEAC) and Sportsmen’s Advisory Group members felt that a 75-cent surcharge on each hunting and fishing license sold in Colorado was an appropriate method of funding the Council’s public information campaign for fishing and hunting.

How to purchase a Colorado Fishing License

There are two ways to purchase a fishing license in Colorado:

  1. Point of Sale from a License Agent.  These are mostly fly fishing shops, sporting goods stores or big box sporting goods stores.
    List of License Agents
  2. Directly from the Department of Wildlife.  There are two methods of purchase.
    • Via telephone at Colorado Parks and Wildlife service center or The toll free number for telephone sales is 1(800) 244-5613
    • Internet Via a secure internet https connection.  How well did the online purchase process work?  I have purchased my license via the internet since 2006 and the process worked fine.

Proof of Residency Checklist for Resident Licenses or Page 5 in the Regulation Brochure

The DOW is using point of purchase computer sales units again this year. Along with other proof of residency requirements, you will be required under Federal law to furnish your social security number to obtain a hunting or fishing license.  SO DON’T BE UPSET WHEN ASKED FOR IT.  Most of the dealers will show you a reference to the law if asked.

Fines can be heavy if caught fishing or hunting without a license. It’s cheaper to buy a license.

Non-resident fees are higher than resident fees.  In every state, the fees go to the fisheries and wildlife or equivalent department to maintain hatcheries, stocking programs, education programs to involve more women and children in the fishing sport, studies of whirling disease and related conversation projects.

Please don’t complain about the cost of the license to the store where purchased.  They offer licenses as a service to their customers and don’t make any money from the sale.

When you purchase your license, ask for a current year Colorado Fishing Regulations and Property Directory booklet.  Take time to familiarize yourself with it as many streams have special regulations and section closures.  Please take time to get a new booklet for 2019 – 2020 or License PDF as there are changes from the previous years.

DO NOT separate your license or you will invalidate it.  DO sign it to make it valid.

Colorado Wildlife Habitat Stamp and State Wildlife Areas (SWA’s)

Anyone that cares about Colorado?s wildlife can purchase a stamp! The stamp is required of persons 18-64 who purchase a fishing or hunting license. A stamp is required on the first TWO hunting or fishing licenses purchased by an individual in a calendar year. A non-licensed person must hold a stamp for admittance to any designated State Wildlife Area (SWA). Requiring a habitat stamp for SWA usage ensures that everyone helps pay for wildlife habitat and access.

Stamps are free for youth (18 and under) and seniors age 65. Once you turn 65 and are a Colorado Resident, you are exempt from the Habitat Stamp. Stamps are also free for the mobility impaired, military hospital patients, and Colorado residents who are active duty military personnel stationed outside Colorado, but on leave in Colorado.

Stamps can be purchased wherever hunting and fishing licenses are sold, DOW Offices and on the internet. (See above) (Cannot be purchased at the SWA locations) 

When purchased with a license, it is $10 and required on the first license purchased in a license year. The Colorado Wildlife Habitat Stamp is $10.25 if purchased without a hunting or fishing license. ($10 for the stamp and 25 cents for Search and Rescue) A lifetime stamp is available for $300.25.  All funds collected will be used for the benefit of wildlife.

At age 65, you may wish to purchase a CORSAR card in addition to the 25 cents Search and Rescue Fee included with your license.
  The card covers reimbursement to county sheriffs for costs incurred on a mission such as mileage, meals, replacement of lot equipment, horses, ATVs or aircraft used in a search.  If such aircraft are used for medical transport, the medical portion is not covered by the card.  (ie. Have some insurance if you are going into the back country. Cost is one year for $3 and 5 years for $12)

Free Fishing Weekend

The first full weekend of June is a free fishing weekend for all Colorado residents and Non-Residents. You do not need to have a Colorado fishing license to fish this weekend, but all other rules and regulations apply.

Help Stop Poaching

Operation Game Thief (OGT) is a non-profit organization working with the
DOW’s law enforcement program. It pays rewards to citizens who report
poachers or resource violations. Callers don’t have to reveal their names,
testify in court or sign a deposition. Rewards are paid if the information
leads to the arrest of a poacher or a citation is issued. Rewards do not depend on a conviction but must be requested when a violation is reported. Call: 1-877-COLOOGT toll-free. The number cannot be used for information requests or emergencies.

Other Helpful information from the Colorado Department of Wildlife

Places to Go  This is the home page for accessing parks maps, State Trust Lands and other information about Colorado. See the Places to go menu.

Atlases for Fishing, Hunting and Statewildlife areas

Wildlife Area Interactive Maps > This is a great resource which will lead the adventurous fisherman to some quality fishing.

State Trust Land Page > Good information here for exploring the fishing on this section of State Land. State Trust Interactive Land Maps are accessed in the upper right corner of the page.

Updated 6/10/2019