• Mississippi National River and Recreation Area

    Mississippi

    National River & Recreation Area Minnesota

Learn How to Fish

A fisher catches a northern pike on one of the lakes within the Mississippi National River and Recreation Area.

An angler fights a large northern pike on one of the small lakes found within the Mississippi National River and Recreation Area. The river and its floodplain lakes are an under-utilized fishery that contains good numbers of sizeable fish.

Gordon Dietzman

Participants at our public events learn about fish and aquatic life, how to fish, and what fish are likely to be caught. Both adults and youth are welcome. These events are a great way to introduce youth to fishing and for adults who would like to regain their fishing skills.

The Mississippi National River and Recreation Area provides all of the tackle, including rods/reels and bait.

2014 Fishing Events and Workshops

Participants in our Take-a-Kid-Fishing programs had a lots of fun learning to cast and catch fish. The steady drizzle and rain on our Saturday event (June 7) reduced the number of participants, but those that came caught lots of panfish. We also built buzz baits that kids got to keep. One of the participants tied on his newly constructed buzz bait and within a few casts caught a very nice largemouth bass!

Watch this page as we will be developing more summer fishing programs for 2014.

Group Programs

We provide specialized fishing programming for groups, such as community groups, community centers, church groups, and community park and recreation departments in communities along the Mississippi River. As in our public programs, we provide fishing tackle and bait. Schedule an event by calling 651-293-8410.


Want to just go fishing, but lack tackle?
Stop by the Mississippi River Visitor Center and pick up free rental tackle.

Links of Interest

Take Me Fishing
This website does a good job of describing the various facets of fishing, from choosing tackle to fish conservation.

Casting a Spinning Reel
This video shows how to make long and accurate casts using a spinning reel.

Which Lure to Use?
Different artificial lures work best under different conditions. This video shows how different types of artificial lures are used.

Twin City Bait Shops
The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has some suggestions on their website for bait shops in the Twin City area. In addition, check out the phone book or look online for additional bait shops.

NOTE: Please discard all excess live bait--such as earthworms and minnows--in the trash. Do not release bait in or near the water. Earthworms are not native to Minnesota and have a detrimental effect on our forests. Bait minnows sometimes contain small, non-native fish that can be detrimental to our rivers and lakes.

Fishing Licenses
Fishing licenses can be purchased at sporting goods stores, some gas stations, and at DNR locations. They may also be purchased online or by telephone. New for the 2013 fishing season is an annual $5 Youth fishing license for those ages 16 and 17.

Find an Access Point
Search for river access points (boat ramps, walk-ins, piers and platforms) in the Mississippi National River and Recreation Area.

Did You Know?

The wide Mississippi River

At Lake Onalaska, near LaCrosse WI, the Mississippi River is about 4 miles wide. The combination of water held behind Lock and Dam #7 and water held by damming the Black River form this broad reach of the Mississippi River.