Fishing Contest Rules and Permits

A fishing contest is defined as any event where six or more licensed anglers (age 15 and older) fish competitively for game fish and determine winners, regardless of the prize value. A fishing contest permit is required by and issued by The Department of Fish and Wildlife. The fee for a fishing contest permit is $24.00 (no more than seven permits will be issued to any one permittee during the calendar year). Effective March 1, 2013, an application fee of $70.00 will be charged for each application submitted (RCW 77.65.480). The $70 application fee will be collected in addition to the fishing contest permit fee and it is non-refundable.  Applications for fishing contest permits may be submitted at any time of the year, but they must be received by the department no less than 30 days prior to the start date of the proposed contest. Bass and walleye contest applicants wishing to have their preferred dates considered equally with all other requested dates must have their applications received by the department by July 1 of the year preceding the year in which the contests are planned to be held. These applications will be processed simultaneously so all applicants have an equal opportunity to get preferred dates. Bass and walleye fishing contest applications received after July 1 will be processed on a first come first serve basis. Upon completion of a fishing contest, a final report is required to be submitted within 30 days. Please see the Washington Administrative Code (WAC) that governs fishing events for more detailed information.

Fishing contests that are restricted to individuals under 15 years of age are defined as juvenile fishing events. A juvenile fishing event exists when ten or more juveniles fish competitively and determine winners, regardless of the prize value. Sponsors of juvenile fishing events must inform the department regional office in which the event will occur. Juvenile fishing event sponsors requesting fish from the department are required to apply for fish by February 1st of the year in which the event is planned. Please see the WAC that governs juvenile fishing events for more detailed information.

Application and Report Forms
The forms for an application, final report, aquatic invasive species decontamination statement, and aquatic invasive species decontamination report, may be obtained from the department at PO Box 43150, Olympia, WA 98504-3150 or by clicking the appropriate link in the box at the right in the upper right.

Please note that the PDF versions of the application and final report forms may be filled out electronically, but they cannot be saved. However, the Word formatted forms may be filled out and saved to your computer.

Special Permits Required in Addition to Fishing Contest Permit
There may be other permits that are required by WDFW and other agencies in addition to the WDFW Permit to Conduct a Fishing Contest for the Taking of Game Fish. These permits are dependent upon the body of water being fished. Click here to see what other permits may be required.

Contest Summaries for Bass and Walleye Fishing Contests




Contest Calendar
WAC 220-220-220 Fishing contests
WAC 220-310-230 Juvenile fishing events
Application for Permit to Conduct a Contest for the Taking of Game Fish - PDF or Word
Final Report of Contest for the Taking of Game Fish
PDF Format | Word
Aquatic Invasive Species Decontamination Report
Aquatic Invasive Species Decontamination Statement