Skip to Content

Arizona Will Pay You to Catch Brown Trout on the Colorado River

Premier Angler is a freshwater fishing resource and brand written, edited, curated, and crafted by fishing enthusiasts for fishing enthusiasts. We also participate in the Bass Pro Shops Affiliate program. Some links on this page may direct you to the Bass Pro Shops website. If you make a purchase through one of those links, we may receive a small commission.

You Can Get Paid to Catch Brown Trout on Arizona’s Colorado River

No, your eyes are not deceiving you. Despite the old adage about things that “seem too good to be true,” this is completely real!

The Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, in partnership with the Glen Canyon Conservancy, is leading this exciting initiative that not only aims to clean up the River’s ecosystem but also put some cash in anglers’ pockets.

For fishing! Does life get any better?

The event, known as the Brown Trout Bonanza, is sure to gain attention from avid trout anglers in the region. Even aficionados of others species may take a stab at getting paid for their efforts.

Since the species is considered an invasive predator, the Brown Trout Incentivized Harvest Program is aiming to protect native river species from the trout’s predation.

Catching Brown Trout Colorado River Arizona
Photo via Tom Hart/Flickr

Anglers fishing the Colorado River between the Paria River and Glen Canyon Dam from April 1 to May 2 are eligible for monetary rewards. The GCNRA will award $33 for each brown trout caught by anglers holding a valid Arizona state fishing license. If three qualifying fish are turned in, a $50 bonus will be applied. An additional $50 is available for each scientific pit tag that is submitted with a qualifying brown trout.

There is also an opportunity for even bigger money!

A $300 reward will be granted to anglers submitting a scientific sonic tag with a qualifying fish. One angler will take home an additional $500 reward from submitting the most brown trout during this one month period. Payments will be made to qualifying anglers in mid-May.

There are no additional costs or fees associated with participating in the program, so long as the angler is licensed in the state.

The program began in late 2020, originally offering $25 per qualifying fish. The brown trout population has been steadily increasing in in this area since 2014.