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Americans took the nation’s waterways by storm in 2018. An impressive 49.4 million people headed to oceans, rivers, lakes and streams in pursuit of fish, but also much more. Whether spin fishing on a local lake, big game fishing with a charter or tying on the just right dry fly, fishing participants were unified not just by a love of fishing, but also by the unique way it connects participants to nature and loved ones.

For the tenth year in a row, the Outdoor Foundation and Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation have teamed up to produce the Special Report on Fishing to provide a comprehensive look at overall trends in participation as well as detailed information on specific fishing categories.

Insights include motivations, barriers and preferences of key groups. The report also identifies opportunities for engaging new audiences in fishing and examines less tangible perceptions about the sport. Special sections are dedicated to youth, Hispanic American and female participation, which are populations with potential for significant growth.