Make the Most of Great Outdoors Month

By Tom Keer

Jun 01, 2016

Great Outdoors Month is a celebration of our natural resources which provides us with so many wonderful opportunities for fishing, camping, boating, and other outdoor activities.

It comes as no surprise that June was proclaimed the Great Outdoors Month. Those 30 days offer some of the best weather of the year across the country. Warm daytime temperatures followed by cool nighttime temperatures and high pressure systems result in great fishing and boating conditions. It's a time to get outside.

Great Outdoors month began in June 1998 to recognize the importance of some activities. It recognizes companies and people who make their living in the recreational business.  Environmental and conservation issues such as open space, clean water and air, and access to public land are important. Some of these initiatives maintain current lands or are proposals to increase open space for us all. Many of us are anglers and boaters, others are campers and hikers, and the list goes on. We all share in the benefits. 

Take Advantage of Free Fishing

A number of special events celebrate our outdoor heritage. National Trails Day, the Great American Backyard Campout and National Get Outdoors Day are popular. My favorite, and probably yours too, is National Fishing and Boating Week, when most states offer free fishing days.

Whether we choose to fish and camp in a National Park (which is celebrating the 100th anniversary of its formation), kayak and canoe in a lake or pond, or splash our boat in the ocean, our natural heritage is important. It's a time not just to enjoy all of the open space but to think about protecting the environment so we have something to pass along to our children and grandchildren.

Plan Family Fishing Trips for Great Outdoors Month

If your kids are out of school, plan a vacation that involves a little bit of everything. From camping to boating and fishing, it won't be expensive. If you go during the free fishing days in your state you won't have to pay for a license. And if you want to keep fishing beyond that period of time, get a fishing license and keep going. Getting outside this month is a great break from all of the screen time we commonly have. Fresh air and fun is a good reason, as is open space and public land. It's ours to enjoy, and once you do you'll be glad you did.

Tom Keer
Tom Keer
Tom Keer is an award-winning writer who lives on Cape Cod, Massachusetts.  He is a columnist for the Upland Almanac, a Contributing Writer for Covey Rise magazine, a Contributing Editor for both Fly Rod and Reel and Fly Fish America, and a blogger for the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation’s Take Me Fishing program.  Keer writes regularly for over a dozen outdoor magazines on topics related to fishing, hunting, boating, and other outdoor pursuits.  When they are not fishing, Keer and his family hunt upland birds over their three English setters.  His first book, a Fly Fishers Guide to the New England Coast was released in January 2011.  Visit him at or at