How Many Fishing Rods Can You Use In Ohio?

Ohio, where the Ohio River (in the South) and Lake Erie (in the North) are indigenous, is ideal for the best fishing games in the US.

This “Buckeye State” will capture your interest, whether you’re looking for Steelhead and Pike or delicious Walleye and Crappie.

It’s imperative to have good research of federal and state guidelines before traveling to a new fishing state, particularly fishing with more than one pole.

So, how many fishing rods can you use in Ohio? The Ohio Wildlife Council (OWC) has ratified the use of three fishing lines per person from January 2021. has provided full info about regulations in Ohio relating to the permitted number of fishing lines. Stay tuned!

How Many Fishing Rods Can You Use In Ohio?

The use of three fishing rods per person is acceptable in Ohio

The ODNR Division of Wildlife stated that the new regulations passed by the OWC say that from Jan 1st, 2020, anglers can use three fishing poles maximum on the Ohio River and Ohio’s portion of Lake Erie.

This new three lines per person regulation will bring smiles, particularly to water walleye enthusiast trollers, those expressing varied opinions on the change.

People who suggested the extra line will not change much, except for how long the change takes to limit the current catchable walleyes flood in Lake Erie.

The council has also approved moving the free fishing dates of Ohio to June 21st, 2020. Soon, the council will schedule these dates for weekends, including the 3rd Sunday of June.

Free fishing days are open and welcome every Ohio resident. During these dates, the citizens here don’t have to bring a license when fishing on Ohio’s public rivers, reservoirs, and lakes, counting lake Erie.

Meanwhile, the council has approved decreasing the limit number of walleye, and sauger for a daily bag to six creatures.

In western fishing units (from Indiana state line to South Point west), the length limit of walleye, and sauger is 14 inches.

These changes contribute greatly to aligning fishing regulations on the Ohio River with other bordering states. They came into effect on Jan 1st, 2020.

Benefits of The New Regulation

The new regulation on the permitted number of fishing lines per person makes it much easier for anglers in Ohio to enjoy landing fish on the most iconic, famous water bodies in this Buckeye state.

Additional line options increase the chance to achieve a rewarding day on the two wonderful resources.

The newly issued three-pole rule should give small boaters fishing in pairs or alone the opportunity to use their additional lure and find more fish.

On fishery officials, comments forthcoming certainly confirm the straightforward fact that even other states approved three poles without any negative result and that this change probably will not affect the walleye population of Lake Erie.

New Concern

Except for Ohio, other states only approve of the two-rod rule, increasing some issues

Except for the Ohio River and Lake Erie, the remaining part of the state only approved using two lines per person when fishing.

That rule doesn’t get on well with many crappie anglers, those wishing to play for keeps and ‘spider-rig’ their angling boats.

Vessels, which come with a tool that can keep multiple fishing outfits, can sweep in an arc across the bow’s craft. This amazing setup allows the angler to take advantage of various baits at various depths.

As a result, it enables the angler to utilize the fullest potential of their angling resources.

Two lines per person basically fail to accommodate the crappie anglers’ desires.

More importantly, the increased fishing equipment allowance wouldn’t impair the resource. This logic is since crappies’ limit is still crappies’ limit, whether two or three lines per person are in use.

The same also goes for Lake Erie trollers. Here, people have actually magnified the situation.

With approximately the fishable water of 3568 square miles at disposal, anglers in Ohio have plentiful state-design territory that they can cover. Also, there is a determined depth for them to locate starving fish.

As such, fishers can experiment with different lure types, line distances used, support equipment, and trolling speeds as per planer boards, downriggers, in-line and directional divers, etc.

Since long ago, Lake Erie fishers have also sought an extension of the obviously outdated two-pole rule. Also, some anglers still go on flaunting this rule. They’re even willing to face a citation of Wildlife Division officers.

It’s no question that the suggestion is a brilliant one, but it may have gone too far. The issue would occur right when they allow short-based anglers to employ three lines instead of two outfits.

This increase will pose an incredibly real threat to how some anglers could gain an advantage when choosing a public fishing pier, jetty, riverfront section, or breakwater.

Downtown Cleveland will very possibly encounter similar limitations, and the Cleveland Metroparks here have a variety of shore-based fishing access points. Undoubtedly, the west and east of Lake Country and Cleveland will experience the same as well.

Residents in Florida also have encountered these issues. There, fishers have to come to the salt-water favorites very early simply because Florida’s liberal permission to use fishing outfits may leave little to no space for other fishers.

So, while Ohio’s elimination of the two-pole regulation and the new move toward the three-line rule is somewhat an intelligent decision, apparently, it also presents some significant downsides.

Where To Fish Around Ohio

Seneca Lake has a long shoreline and a variety of fish species.

There are more than 50000 lakes and ponds for anglers in Ohio to pick. Some locations are well-known for their huge populations of creatures, while others appeal to fishers with their favorable natural conditions.

Lake Erie

One of the best trips you can enjoy in this state is on Lake Erie - the fishing site with the best perch fishing and walleye. It’s also renowned for steelhead fishing and bass.

The water conditions and weather here can change rapidly and may catch unprepared fishers off guard. So, fishing on Lake Erie requires pre-planning and adequate knowledge than on other locations in Ohio.

Ohio River

The Ohio River always sits at the top of our recommended fishing site list in Ohio. Many creatures congregate here, increasing the chance of catching plentiful species.

We can name some of the most popular fish you can land on the river, like walleye and sauger, largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, flathead, blue, and channel catfish.

Alum Creek

Alum Creek in Ohio’s center is a famous fishing area because of its size, easy-to-access points for either boats or shoreline anglers, and species available.

The lake offers a healthy population of musky, crappie, largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, and catfish.

Seneca Lake

Seneca Lake has more than 50 miles of shoreline as well as an abundance of species - all of these make it a year-round and all-around lake to go fishing.

The most popular species you can target are crappie, largemouth bass, and channel catfish.

Clear Fork Reservoir

Fishers looking for either size or plentiful largemouth bass will surely adore this place. Clear Fork Reservoir definitely stands at the frontline of the bass fishing areas in Ohio.

Other common species in this lake include bluegill, channel catfish, and crappie. Many anglers choose to go boat fishing when they arrive here.


How many fishing rods can you use in Ohio? In general, fishing with no more than three rods is acceptable in the state of Ohio, whereas two rods are applicable to most of the US’s remaining parts.

Although landing fish with many rods is a cool way to catch abundant fish and save time, you may be violating the state’s rules. These regulations and rules are not likely to remain over time; instead, they’ll change.

So, it’s necessary to always check your federal fishing rules before angling with more than one hook or line.

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