Lakes & Fishing

Grand Rapids was awarded the Central Region Ultimate Fishing Town in 2013

Grand Rapids was awarded the Central Region Ultimate Fishing Town in 2013

Our area lakes offer year round recreation, from great fishing and water sports in the summer, to ice fishing, snowmobiling and cross country skiing in the winter.

Home to more than 1,000 Grand Lakes, the Grand Rapids area is a fishing mecca for anglers in search of crappie, northerns, walleye, panfish, bass and perch. Fishing season begins just after the early spring warm-up and fishing opener in May, through summer and on to autumn when fish go on a feeding binge in preparation for freeze-up. However, the great fishing doesn’t get put on hold with the thickening of lake ice. Some of the area’s finest fishing takes place during the Northwood’s winter season.

Check Out the Latest Fishing Reports

  • 3-31-14 Panfish & Perch MN Fishing Report in Grand Rapids MN

    March 31, 2014

    Now is the best time for spring ice fishing enthusiasts to get out on the ice as the weather is warming and the days are longer. April offers spectacular panfish and perch fishing in the Grand Rapids, MN area. And when the sun’s out be sure take along the sun tan lotion and grab a set of sunglasses, even if they are a pair of “cheap sun glasses,” like legendary rock ‘n’ rollers ZZ Top sang about and you won’t necessarily even have to grow out your beard to wear them.

    There’s still plenty of ice on which to fish.

    Read more →

  • Late Ice Fishing Report

    March 20, 2014

    Fishing Report 3-20-14

    Now is the time to grab your fishing gear and head out onto the Grand Rapids area ice sheets. The ice conditions are great. When you do, here are a few tips. The first thing to consider is mobility, both vehicular and by foot.  As the snow melts slush appears and when slush forms motorized vehicles get stuck. Right now snowmobiles and chained or tracked atvs/utvs are the best. Trucks are still an option, but the risk factor is huge.

    While traveling on ice, stay away from old plowed roads, as they are veritable lakes and do

    Read more →

  • Grand Rapids Ice Fishing Report 2-20-14

    February 20, 2014

    Winnibigoshish, Bowstring and Pokegama and other Grand Rapids, MN lakes are producing a nice mixture of walleyes, northerns, perch and panfish. As fish get ready for the spawn it seems they put on the feedbag. The result is good fishing action. Well plowed and maintained roads on big lakes such as Winnie and Bowstring provide a great to not only get out to good structure, but provided the opportunity to get off the heavily fished areas via snowmobiles and atv/utvs “chained up.” Mobility is the current key to unlocking the fishing doldrums.

    As we enter the fourth quarter of walleye …

    Read more →

  • Ice Fishing Report 2-13-14

    February 13, 2014

    The warmer temperatures and settled snowpack have definitely helped fishing. With the northern pike and walleye seasons set to close February 28, now is the time to get into that late season action. Because access has been limited due to cold and windy temps, anglers have not been able to get out as much the last week or so, but that has definitely changed and changed for the better.

    Walleye action is still pretty much a low light bite with the best action coming just before sunset and into the dark. Jigging spoons seem to be the ticket, with a …

    Read more →

  • Ice Fishing Report 2-11-14

    February 11, 2014

    As the temperatures have gone above zero and the snow pack has firmed, the perch fishing ramped up to a good “action” bite. Still, some sorting has been in order to fill a bucket. Due to the fish being on a minnow bite, and the minnows have been moving, a “run and gun” approach has helped. As the perch move into the deeper water saddles with soft spots in the bottom and feed on larvae and bug hatches they will become more stationary, but for now it is a “chasing” game. Don’t overlook the shallows, however, as some perch schools …

    Read more →

  • Ice Fishing Report 1-30-14

    January 30, 2014

    During a cold front, especially one like the last ones(s) we have had, walleyes lately have had a tendency to bite on a certain hump one evening and then move to another piece of structure the next. The reason is they’re chasing minnows and small perch. To counteractive this dilemma, work shorelines and mid-lake break-line structures from 22-26 FOW during the first hour of the morning and last light/early dark in the evening. These are your best times for walleyes.

    On another note, perch fishing has been a good “action” bite, but some sorting has been happening in to “fill …

    Read more →

  • Ice Fishing Oz

    February 11, 2013

    Megan Christianson with Visit Grand Rapids takes you to Oz’s Wonderland of Fishing. Grand Rapids is home to many exciting indoor and outdoor recreation activites, and is well-known for all seasons fishing–on the ice and the open water–for multiple species of fish.

    Grand Rapids, Minnesota, offers some of the best multi-species ice fishing action in the country. Whether you love chasing big bluegills and crappies on small backwoods waters or love the challenge of icing walleyes, pike — even muskies — on classic big waters, Grand Rapids, Minnesota is a great destination!…

    Read more →

  • Memorable Fishing Found Here

    July 25, 2012

    Fishing in Grand Rapids, MN…it’s in Minnesota’s nature. Grand Rapids is home to over 1,000 lakes, the highest concentration of lakes in Minnesota. Whether fishermen are looking to catch pan fish or a trophy walleye, they will find what they are looking for in the Grand Rapids area. Each lake brings a unique fishing opportunity. Some of the lakes have public boat access and some are portage access. Make sure to check out the weekly Grand Rapids, MN Fishing Report each week for tips and hot spots. The area’s professional fishing guides can ensure a memorable fishing experience to the …

    Read more →

Check out additional Grand Rapids area Fishing Reports:

Nik &Rod Dimich, Dimich Outdoors
Tom Neustrom, MN Fishing Connections


View Visit Grand Rapids Lakes in a larger map

Bass Lake Information

Location: Cohasset, 5 miles west of Grand Rapids
Acres: 2,407
Max Depth: 76 feet
Clarity: 10.7 feet

Predominant Fish Species: Northern Pike, Walleye, Sunfish, Bluegill, Yellow Perch, Rock Bass

DNR Stocking/Lake Report

Public Accesses: 2 concrete, 1 earthen
Unique Qualities: Bass Lake has two different basins connected by a two-mile long channel of marsh. The lake is stocked with walleye and has been a good producer of walleyes and bluegills for anglers.

Member Place to Stay on Bass Lake:
Hidden Haven Resort
Wildwood Resort 

Bowstring Lake Information

 Location: 17 miles north of Deer River (29 miles west and north of Grand Rapids)
Acres: 9,220
Max Depth: 32 feet
Clarity: 6 feet

Predominant Fish Species: Black Crappie, Walleye, Bullhead, Northern Pike, Yellow Perch

DNR Stocking/Lake Report

Public Accesses: 4 (3 concrete, 1 earthen)

Unique Qualities: Excellent natural fish reproduction, especially for walleye and crappie. Bowstring Lake is a good all-around fishing lake with the sand bars and rock points that provide good structure for fish. Bowstring Lake connects with Sand Lake, another popular fishing lake.

Interesting Fact or Legend about Bowstring Lake: Relatively shallow lakes, like Bowstring, heat and cool quickly so they are at the forefront of fishing peaks in the spring and fall.

Member Place to stay on Bowstring Lake:
Bowstring Shores Resort
Rocky Shores Resort

Caribou Lake Information

Location: 26 miles north of Grand Rapids near Marcell
Acres: 240
Max Depth: 152 feet
Clarity: 28 feet

Predominant Fish Species: Lake Trout, Bluegill, Yellow Perch, Rock Bass

DNR Stocking/Lake Report 

Public Accesses: 1 gravel

Unique Qualities: Dramatic shoreline elevations and excellent water clarity compliment the fishing experience. Caribou Lake is the clearest natural lake in Minnesota with a 28 foot water clarity.

Interesting Fact or Legend about Caribou Lake:
The largest Kokanee Salmon ever caught in Minnesota was taken from Caribou Lake in 1971. It weighed 2 pounds, 15 ounces and measured 20 inches long.

Caribou Lake has been featured in National Geographic Magazine. Local legend claims there is a house in the bottom of Caribou Lake which broke through the ice during a winter house move across the lake.

Member Place to Stay on Caribou Lake:
Buckhorn Resort on Caribou

Cutfoot Sioux Lake Information

 Location: nearest town is Squaw Lake
Acres: 2,768
Max Depth: 78 feet
Clarity: 12 feet

Predominant Fish Species: Walleye, Black Crappie, Northern Pike, Bluegill, Tullibee, Yellow Perch, Rock Bass, Bullhead

DNR Stocking/Lake Report

Public Accesses: 3 concrete, 1 earthen

Unique Qualities: Cutfoot Sioux Lake is a very popular walleye fishing lake and can be crowded during the fishing opener. Cutfoot is connected to Lake Winnie and provides anglers with the choice of staying on Cutfoot or venturing out onto Big Winnie. The lake is stocked with walleye on a regular basis.

Interesting Fact or Legend about Cutfoot Sioux Lake: Send us an interesting fact about Cutfoot Sioux Lake and we will post it here.

Deer Lake Information

 Location: Deer River, northwest of Grand Rapids
Acres: 4,097
Max Depth: 121 feet
Clarity: 11 feet

Predominant Fish Species: Walleye, Yellow Perch, Bluegill, Largemouth Bass, Sunfish, Rock Bass, Smallmouth Bass, and some Muskellunge

DNR Stocking/Lake Report

Public Accesses: 1 concrete

Unique Qualities: Deer Lake is moderately developed with family homes, cabins, and some smaller family resorts. The lake supports diverse fish species and is actively managed for walleye, musky and smallmouth bass.

Interesting Fact or Legend about Deer Lake: Deer Lake is sometimes referred to as the Lake of Changing Colors.

Jesse Lake Information

 Location: Talmoon, 32 miles northwest of Grand Rapids
Acres: 1,753
Max Depth: 42 feet
Clarity: 8 feet

Predominant Fish Species: Walleye, Yellow Perch, Northern Pike

DNR Stocking/Lake Report

Public Accesses: 1 concrete

Unique Qualities: Jessie Lake is actively managed for walleyes and was aggressively stocked in 2002 and 2003. The relatively shallow depth of Jessie Lake allows for heating and cooling of the lake water slightly ahead of traditional lake trends in northern Minnesota.

Member Place to Stay on Jessie Lake:
Jessie View Resort

Mississippi River Information

 Location: dissects the community of Grand Rapids
Predominant Fish Species:
Public Accesses:

Unique qualities: Be aware of the locations of dams along the Mississippi River and how they will impact your ability to navigate upstream or downstream. Fishing between the Blandin Paper Mill Dam and the Pokegama Dam is popular during the summer months. The river has bays which hold bass and panfish, and has several bridges that provide opportunities to fish underneath from shore.

Interesting Fact or Legend about the Mississippi River: The Mississippi River landing in Grand Rapids was the furthermost stopping point for the early steamships on the river. At Grand Rapids the river became too shallow for the ships to continue northward and thus Grand Rapids became the entertainment, trading, and merchant shopping hub to the northern region.

Moose Lake Information

Location: Deer River, northwest of Grand Rapids
Acres: 1274
Max Depth: 61 feet
Clarity: 7.5 feet

Predominant Fish Species: Walleye, Yellow Perch, Bluegill, Largemouth Bass, Sunfish, Northern Pike, Rock Bass, Black Crappie, Smallmouth Bass, and some Muskellunge

DNR Stocking/Lake Report

Public Accesses: 1 concrete

Interesting Fact or Legend about Moose Lake: If you know an interesting fact or legend about Moose Lake please send us an email and we will post it here!

Member Places to Stay on Moose Lake:
Cedarwild Resort

Pokegama Lake Information

 Location: Grand Rapids
Acres: 6,612
Max Depth: 112 feet
Clarity: 18.5 feet

Predominant Fish Species: Bluegill, Northern Pike, Rockbass, Walleye, Yellow Perch, Largemouth and Smallmouth Bass, Crappie

DNR Stocking/Lake Report

Public Accesses: 7 (5 concrete, 2 earthen)

Unique Qualities: Pokegama Lake is a 6612 acre recreational lake that provides access by water to Jay Gould Lake and the Mississippi River. The natural topography of Pokegama Lake provides the varied natural structure which sustains good quality and quantities of all game fish species. The lake has hosted a number of fishing tournaments over the years including bass, perch, and walleye tournaments.

Interesting Fact or Legend about Pokegama Lake: The name Pokegama is a Native American word meaning many fingers or many bays.

Member Places to Stay on Pokegama Lake:
Southwood Resort
Seagren’s Pokegama Lodge B&B
Green Heron B&B

Prairie Lake Information

 Location: 5 miles north of Grand Rapids off Highway 38 – The Edge of the Wilderness National Scenic Byway.

Acres: 1064
Max Depth: 31 feet
Clarity: 6.5 feet

Predominant Fish Species: Black crappie, Bluegill, Yellow Perch, Northern Pike, and Walleye

DNR Stocking/Lake Report

Public Accesses: 2 concrete

Unique Qualities: Prairie Lake has a unique outcropping of rocks on its southern edge that form the Prairie Lake Gorge. This scenic spot is a popular photography location which can also be accessed via a short hike from Gunn Park along the Itasca Bike Trail.  The location is not signed so listen for clues along the bike trail to know where to find the lake and its’ gorge.

Member Place to Stay on Prairie Lake:
Pine Acres Resort

Spider Lake Information

 Location: 8 miles SW of Marcell, 32 miles north of Grand Rapids
Acres: 1,349
Max Depth: 36 feet
Clarity: 12.5 feet

Predominant Fish Species: Bluegill, Yellow Perch, Northern Pike, Black Crappie, Walleye, Largemouth Bass

DNR Stocking/Lake Report

Public Accesses: 1 concrete

Unique Qualities: Spider Lake supports diverse fish species and is managed for walleye production.
Interesting Fact or Legend about Spider Lake:

Splithand Lake Information

Location: Grand Rapids
Acres: 1,420
Max Depth: 34 feet
Clarity: 8.5 feet

Predominant Fish Species: Yellow Perch, Walleye, Northern Pike, Bluegill, Black Crappie, Sunfish

DNR Stocking/Lake Report

Public Accesses: 1 concrete

Unique Qualities: Splithand Lake is a residential lake with no commercial resort properties remaining on the lake. Its relatively shallow depth allow for heating and cooling water temperatures ahead of normal trends.

Interesting Fact or Legend about Splithand Lake: If you know an interesting fact or legend about Splithand Lake please send us an email and we will post it here!

Sugar Lake Information

 Location: 14 miles southwest of Grand Rapids
Acres: 1306
Max Depth: 105 feet
Clarity: 26 feet

Predominant Fish Species: Yellow Perch, Walleye, Rock Bass, Northern Pike, and Bluegill.

DNR Stocking/Lake Report

Public Accesses: 1 concrete
Unique Qualities: Sugar Lake is managed for walleye and northern pike production. Locals recommend fishing the lake in the evening or on cloudy days because of the crystal clear water.

Interesting Fact or Legend about Sugar Lake: A unique sand composition in the bottom of Sugar Lake along with exceptionally clear water creates an aquamarine color reflection. Sugar Lake Lodge was the host location of the 1999 Governor’s Fishing Opener with Jessie Ventura.

Member place to stay on Sugar Lake:
Sugar Lake Lodge

Turtle Lake Information

 Location: Marcell, 35 miles north of Grand Rapids
Acres: 2,052
Max Depth: 137 feet
Clarity: 12 feet

Predominant Fish Species: Bluegill, Northern Pike, Rock Bass, Smallmouth Bass, Walleye, Tullibee (cisco), Yellow Perch

DNR Stocking/Lake Report

Public Accesses: 1 concrete

Unique Qualities: Turtle Lake is an aesthetically beautiful lake with clear, deep water. Its reputation for large smallmouth bass and a diverse fish species make it a popular fishing destination for recreational anglers. If you are lodging in Grand Rapids and plan to fish on Turtle Lake, Frontier Sports in Marcell is a good place to stop for fishing bait and last-minute supplies.

Interesting Fact or Legend about Turtle Lake: Do you know of a legend or fact about Turtle Lake? Please send us an email?

Wasson Lake Information

 Location: Near Bigfork, 35 miles northeast of Grand Rapids
Acres: 450
Max Depth: 67 feet
Clarity: 14 feet

Predominant Fish Species: Largemouth Bass, Smallmouth Bass, Bluegill, Pumpkinseed Sunfish, Northern Pike, Black Crappie

DNR Stocking/Lake Report

Public Accesses: none
Unique Qualities: Wasson Lake is a 450 acre, spring fed lake similar in appearance to a Canadian lakescape.  With only one family resort, no public access and the lack of development around the lake, the lake provides a quiet experience ideal for fishing, canoeing, kayaking and wildlife viewing.  The provides excellent fishing for large and smallmouth bass, northern pike, crappies and bluegills.

Member Place to Stay on Wasson Lake:
Loon Point Resort

Lake Winnibigoshish Information

 Location: North of Deer River
Acres: 58,544
Max Depth: 70 feet
Clarity: not recorded

Predominant Fish Species: Walleye, Yellow Perch, Crappie, Northern Pike, Muskellunge, and Tullibee (Cisco)
Public Accesses: 7 concrete

DNR Stocking/Lake Report

Unique Qualities: Lake Winnie is a large lake that is popular with walleye anglers during open water season, and perch anglers during the ice fishing season. The lake is widely regarded as one of the top walleye fisheries in Minnesota. Much of the land around Lake Winnie is federal forestland and part of the Chippewa National Forest. Lake Winnibigoshish is actively managed for walleye production.

Interesting Fact about Lake Winnie: The state record Musky (muskellunge) was caught in Lake Winnie in 1957. It weighed 54 pounds and measured 56 inches long.

.

Local Grand Rapids Minnesota Fishing Guides

Minnesota Fishing Connections Contact: Tom Neustrom
Phone: 218-259-2628
Dimich Outdoors Contact: Rod & Nik Dimich
Phone: 218-259-4051 Phone: 218-259-8459