Fishing to open to general public in Cherokee on May 15

by May 9, 2020General Announcements



Under Executive Orders #11 & #12 (2020), issued by Principal Chief Richard G. Sneed, fishing in Cherokee will open to the public starting Friday, May 15.

  • Cloth face coverings will not be mandatory while fishing.
  • Social distancing requirements remain in place.
  • Stocking of all enterprise waters will resume prior to the May 15 opening date.
  • Fishing permits may be purchased on-line at or from a local fishing permit vendor.
  • It is recommended that the purchase of fishing permits for closure dates be avoided, as
    refunds will not be issued for those dates.
    The Memorial Day Fishing Tournament is cancelled and will not be rescheduled.
  • Annual permits will not be extended due to Enterprise Waters being closed during a State of Emergency shut down.
  • Sportsmen who purchased the tournament registration fee and the two-day
    corresponding fishing permits for the Opening Day Fishing Tournament and/or the Memorial Day Fishing Tournaments have the option to use those permits at the Tim Hill Memorial Fishing Tournament scheduled for July 11-12. Permits may be presented to staff at the tag turn-in location during the July tournament for verification. Invalid permits may result in a citation being issued.
    Permit validation will include the following:
    Opening Day Fishing Tournament Registration Fee $15 2-day Fishing Permit dated March 28-29, 2020 $17 Or,
    Memorial Day Fishing Tournament Registration Fee $15 2-day Fishing Permit dated May 23-24, 2020 $17
    Refund requests for the above-mentioned permits/registration fees may be considered upon written request to the Fisheries & Wildlife Management Office at PO Box 1747, Cherokee, NC 28719. Documentation submittal required for refunds are: (1) a written request for a refund; (2) the permit; (3) sportsman contact information; (4) a signed W-9

Form. Refund decisions will be processed after the tribe re-opens and staff return to duty. Projected staff return will be Monday, June 8, 2020.

For additional information contact: for a listing of hotels and campgrounds in Cherokee NC. for on-line fishing permits and information. for fishing information updates.

The Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians remains under a state of emergency and key metrics related to COVID-19 will continue to be monitored. Restrictions may be re-instated or new ones implemented if trends indicate the need.

The EBCI Fisheries & Wildlife Management team would like to thank you for your patience, understanding and well wishes during the mandated closure of the Cherokee Indian Qualla Boundary and enterprise fishing waters. Working together, we made a difference in keeping the number of covid-19 cases at a minimum. Help us keep up the good work by following the requirements of social distancing, frequent hand washing and the use of hand-sanitizer. We look forward to seeing you in Cherokee soon.

Reference: Cherokee Code Chapter 166, Article II, the Declaration of State of Emergency issued March 13, 2020, and accompanying Executive Orders, supplements, and amendments to that Declaration.

– EBCI Fisheries & Wildlife Management release