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Snow and rain bring swollen waters, and that brings out the fishermen.

The Arizona Game and Fish Department will be trying to share the love of angling this weekend at the annual fish clinic, held on the Verde River near the White Bridge off of State Route 260 in Camp Verde.

The event is open to anglers of all ages and experience levels, and equipment is not required. Fishing rods and bait will be provided.

So will the fish.

The river will be stocked with trout ahead of time, said Tom Bagley, wildlife manager with Arizona Game and Fish.

Bagley said that the state used to stock the river between November and March, but lately, there wasn’t a lot of

participation when it came to fishing the river.

But spring is fast approaching.

“People’s thoughts turn to fishing,” Bagley said. “All you have to do is just show up.”

The current state of the economy has left people without disposable cash to spend on fishing supplies, Bagley said, and the state is hoping this fishing weekend will bring more people into being involved with the hobby.

The state has been trying to ignite interest in fishing on the Verde River for more than half a decade, Bagley said.

Bagley recommends that interested fishers get to the site early, because it’s going to be “first come, first serve” for the best spots along the river.

game_fish_logoThe event has gotten more popular every year, Bagley said, and there will likely be a lot of people chomping at the bit to get an ideal spot to catch some of those fish.

Instructors will be on hand to teach people the basics, from casting to rigging a fishing knot, Bagley said.

The only thing that might be disadvantageous to a fisherman might be the weather, but organizers are hoping for the best.

“The weather is always iffy this time of year,” Bagley said.

Camp Verde Parks and Recreation will provide lunch, Bagley said.

The event is scheduled to start at 8 a.m., according to the town, and lunch will be served at noon. The event is scheduled for Saturday, March 6.

Mark Lineberger can be reached at 567-3341 or e-mail at

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