California Department of Fish and Wildlife

California Fishing Passport
Coldwater Fishing Achievement and Recognition

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California's inland waters include more than 4,100 lakes and reservoirs and nearly 30,000 miles of streams and rivers that provide ample coldwater fishing opportunities for anglers of all ages. Both novice and experienced anglers can pursue the wily trout and other coldwater fishes from California's clear mountain lakes down to the streams and rivers emptying into the Pacific.
Coldwater Fishing

Coldwater Anglers may qualify for three different awards:

  • California Fishing Passport Coldwater Angler
    Catch at least 3 different qualifying fish.
  • California Fishing Passport Accomplished Coldwater Angler
    Catch at least 5 different qualifying fish.
  • California Master Coldwater Angler
    Catch at least 10 different qualifying fish.

Which coldwater fish qualify?

  • Qualifying coldwater fish are found in the Inland Coldwater Fishes section and the Anadromous Fishes section of the California Fishing Passport (shad, sturgeon, and striped bass do not qualify as coldwater fish)
  • For recognition as a California Fishing Passport Coldwater Angler, any 3 of the following species qualify.
  • For recognition as a California Fishing Passport Accomplished Coldwater Angler, any 5 of the following species qualify.
  • For recognition as a California Master Coldwater Angler, all 10 of the following species must be caught, documented, and stamped to qualify.

Specifically:

  • Brown trout
  • Brook trout
  • Chinook salmon
    landlocked or
    freshwater-caught only
  • Cutthroat trout
    any sub-species
    in the Passport
  • Golden trout
    any sub-species
    in the Passport
  • Kokanee
  • Lake trout
  • Mountain whitefish
  • Rainbow trout
    any sub-species
    in the Passport
  • Redband trout
    any sub-species
    in the Passport
 

Only species listed in the California Fishing Passport as defined above and caught in California during 2006 or afterwards qualify for Coldwater Fishing awards.

What California Fishing Passport awards will I receive?

certificate
  • California Fishing Passport Coldwater Angler
    • Coldwater Angler award pin
    • Certificate of Recognition suitable for framing
  • California Fishing Passport Accomplished Coldwater Angler
    • Accomplished Coldwater Angler award pin
    • Certificate of Recognition suitable for framing
  • California Master Coldwater Angler
    • California Coldwater Master Angler pin
    • Certificate of Recognition suitable for framing
    • CDFW Director's Letter of Congratulations

How to apply for recognition:

California Fishing Passport
  1. Get your Passport book stamped at one of our Department offices or independent stamping agents. Each qualifying species must be fully documented and stamped in your California Fishing Passport. If you have trouble finding an agent, call us at (707) 964-5026.
  2. Make clear photocopies of your passport showing all the stamps earned towards your current level of achievement
  3. Print and fill out a California Fishing Passport Angler Award application. Adobe Reader required
  4. Send the photocopies and the signed application to the Department at:

    California Department of Fish and Wildlife
    California Fishing Passport Program
    32330 N. Harbor Drive
    Fort Bragg, CA 95437

NOTE: Anglers will soon be able to apply online for recognition! Check back soon for more details.

What is the ultimate level of achievement?

Supreme Master Angler

Become a California Supreme Master Angler by earning two or more of the following:

Visit the California Supreme Master Angler page for more information about achieving California Supreme Master Angler status.

Questions? E-mail passport@wildlife.ca.gov or call us at (707) 964-5026.

All decisions of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife are final.

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