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Learn cane-pole fishing with MDC at free classes

St. LOUIS, Mo. — There’s no better way to get back to the basics of fishing than using an old-fashioned cane pole. No high-tech graphite rods, no fancy spin-casting reels, just the fundamentals of fishing—a snapshot from a simpler era. Cane pole fishing is an easy, affordable, non-mechanical way to experience the sport at its purest. It can also be an effective way to catch fish.

The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) is holding five Basic Cane Pole Fishing classes during the months of July and August at two locations in the St. Louis area, including The August. A Busch Memorial Conservation Area, 2360 Highway D in St. Charles, and the educational fishing lakes at the Fish Hatchery in Forest Park. Each class is free, but advanced registration is required by using the link provided below with each listing. Class offerings are as follows:

Thursday, July 12, 8-10 a.m., Busch Conservation area, Lake 2;
Wednesday, Aug. 1, 8-10: a.m., Busch Conservation area, Lake 2;
Thursday, Aug. 2, 9-11 a.m., Forest Park fish hatchery;
Wednesday, Aug. 15 8-10 a.m., Busch Conservation area, Lake 2;
Wednesday, Aug. 15, 9-11 a.m., Forest Park fish hatchery;

These fishing classes will include all the basics of cane pole fishing, including proper fish handling. MDC will provide everything needed. The class is open to ages six and up; participants under 16 must be accompanied by an adult. Participants 16 and over who plan to fish will need a valid fishing license which can be purchased online at