The Okanogan Wenatchee National Forest is honoring National Get Outdoors Day next Saturday (June 9) by waiving fees at day-use sites. 

National Get Outdoors Day - Okanogan Wenatchee National Forest
National Get Outdoors Day - Okanogan Wenatchee National Forest
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As a result, there will be no day-use fees at trailheads, picnic areas, visitor centers, and other recreation sites. 

National Forest spokesperson Robin DeMario says it's a chance for people to take advantage of everything the wooded area has to offer.  

"It's an opportunity for families to get out into the national forest and enjoy trailheads, going for short hikes with the kids and the grandparents, and just enjoying those amenities where they are day use," said DeMario. 

Forest Visitors are asked to keep in mind that fees for camping, cabin rentals, or special permits, will remain in effect on Saturday. 

But the waiver of day use fees in the forest coincides with the Free Fishing Weekend in Washington, when fishing licenses are not required to fish for certain species. 

It includes trout, lingcod, rockfish and shad.    

Any fish requiring a catch record card, which includes sturgeon, salmon, steelhead and halibut, will still require licenses and all normal regulations will apply.  

Free Fishing Weekend - Okanogan Wenatchee National Forest
Free Fishing Weekend - Okanogan Wenatchee National Forest
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Free Fishing Weekend in the state always takes place on the second weekend in June, which just happens to cross paths with National Get Outdoors Day this year.  

In addition, National Get Outdoors Day will sync up with National Fishing and Boating Week (June 1-June 9).  

The forest service is reminding visitors who recreate on the water to be sure to wear the appropriate safety floatation device and dress for air and water temperatures. It's important to remember that most rivers and streams will still be running high with spring melt-off, meaning currents will be fast and the water will be very cold. 

DeMario says it's a good idea to check out what's available and what might be required before venturing into the woods. 

"We urge visitors to plan their adventure carefully by checking their local forest or public lands website for specific information on recreation opportunities, trails, safety guidelines and any additional regulations," DeMario said. 

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Gallery Credit: Parker Kane

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