People can argue over their favorite fishing hole, but Minnesota is arguably the best state for fishing. Though it may compete heavily with Wisconsin it is the most prominent walleye state. Known as The Land of Ten Thousand Lakes, Minnesota is flooded with chances to land a big one!
With so many options it is difficult to decide, but luckily that makes it hard to go wrong! The lake state is home to bass, walleye, muskellunge, crappie, and northern pike. Minnesota is blessed with a diversity of naturally occurring species, but also heavily stocks its waters with trout, bass, walleye, whitefish, and perch. Some salmon fishing can be found in Minnesota, too, but they are rarely found outside Lake Superior.
Some amazing walleye fishing can be had in Minnesota, which has adopted the walleye as its state fish. Millie Lacs Lake is great not just for walleye, but pike, bluegill, bass, muskellunge and perch, too. Walleye can be caught consistently in Big Stone Lake, Lake Vermilion, Lake Minnetonka, Rainy Lake, along with many others. The seventeen pound state record walleye was caught from Seagull River. A stamp, in addition to a fishing license, is required to fish for walleye, and trout.
Lake of the Woods is a phenomenal fishery known for its trophy walleye. Considering that it is nearly a million acres large it is no wonder the fish can grow so large! Lake of the Woods is not just for walleye, but where many sizable muskellunge, northern pike, lake sturgeon, and varieties of bass are caught. Lake of the Woods is a must visit for any angler! It is a great location year round, especially for ice fishing.
Minnesota is known for ice fishing and spear fishing. Perch and northern pike are commonly seen from ice fishing shacks, but depending on the lake you could take your pick! Combining the two and using spears as a method of ice fishing is also popular.
Bass in Minnesota are so aggressive they seem to leap right off the hook. Minnesota harbors small and largemouth, rock, and white bass. Being so widespread bass seem like a staple of just about every lake and stream in the state! The state’s record largemouth came from Tetonka Lake. Some truly fine bass can be caught from Lake Minnetonka, many at trophy sizes. For shallow water bass fishing Leech Lake cannot be beat. Lake Vermilion is another, deeper, waterway where it’s hard to go wrong.
Trout, the go-to fish, is a prominent beauty in Minnesota. Rainbow, brown, brook, lake, splake (a lake and brook hybrid) and tiger trout (brook and brown hybrid), all live in Minnesota waterways though only brook and lake trout are native Minnesotans. Due to their varying habitats it is difficult to find all types of trout in one location, but you can nearly get them all at Courthouse lake, which has brook, rainbow, brown, and lake! The majority of stocked trout in Minnesota are brook trout. Most trout streams are on private lands, so be careful where you cast!
Licenses can be purchased online, by phone, and in person at licensing agents. Social security numbers are needed for a Minnesota fishing license as part of the ongoing effort of federal law requiring them for all recreational licenses. One and three day, plus annual licenses are available to residents and non-residents. Only residents may buy a three year, and they can also buy couple licenses (for married couples; one license that is valid for both individuals). Non-residents may opt for a week long license or a family license.
Whenever you head out fishing to a new place, it's always best to speak to local anglers. Use fishing forums to ask questions and learn about the most accurate and up to date conditions.