Fishing and Hunting

Return to Plan Your Visit

Fishing opportunities abound within Mississippi National River and Recreation Area for both boat and shoreline fishing. The Mississippi River in the northern suburbs and further north is a nationally recognized smallmouth bass fishery with both good numbers and size of fish. Walleyes flourish below Lock and Dam 1. Floodplain lakes contain trout, panfish, northern pike, and largemouth bass.

The Mississippi National River and Recreation Area holds fishing workshops during both summer and winter fishing seasons and provides programming for both youth and adult groups. If you are interested in a group fishing program, please call 651-293-8410 for more information about planning your fishing event. Use the links to the right to learn about upcoming fishing workshops. It promises to be an exciting season!

PLEASE NOTE:The ice fishing program scheduled for this Saturday (January 16, 2015) has been canceled due to very cold weather.

Shoreline Locations on the Mississippi River

East Coon Rapids Dam
9750 Egret Blvd NW., Coon Rapids, MN 55433
A great variety of fish may be caught here including northern pike, carp, smallmouth bass, freshwater drum, and catfish among others. Check out riprapped shorelines, especially on the outside bends in the river, for smallmouth bass and walleyes.

Shoreline Locations on Lakes and Ponds

Cenaiko Lake
Rainbow and brook trout, smallmouth bass. There is a fishing pier on the lake. Check fishing regulations and seasons before fishing here; trout stamps are needed in addition to a license. Entrance fee to park.

Pickerel Lake
Buegills, crappies, northern pike, members of the sucker and catfish family. Northern pike are fairly large. Bluegills run to the small side, but are numerous. Good place for children to fish.

Snelling Lake
Sunfish (bluegills, pumpkinseeds), northern pike. There is a fishing pier on this lake. Entrance fee to park.

Rebecca Lake
Rebecca Lake has a variety of fish including northern pike (above average size), largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, bluegills, crappies, and stocked channel catfish. Shorefishing is available, but may be limited in some areas due to very shallow water or aquatic vegetation. Fishing pier is available.

Youth Fishing Ponds (MDNR FIN) - Champlin Mill Pond

Boat Fishing and Navigation

For boat ramps and walk-in water access, see the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Water Access Maps and Boating and Canoeing for locations.

The Metro Area Rivers Guide by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources is an excellent guide to boating the Mississippi, Minnesota, and St. Croix Rivers.

Hunting opportunities within the Mississippi National River and Recreation Area are somewhat limited as much of the park lies within a heavily populated metropolitan area, but opportunities do exist.


Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge
3815 American Blvd. E., Bloomington, MN 55425
Waterfowl, deer, and small game hunting opportunities. See the Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge regulations brochure.

Urban Deer Hunts
Hunts are held in selected parks to control deer populations, but the hunts vary widely from year to year. Check jurisdiction websites for more information: Ramsey County, Anoka County, Hennepin County, Washington County, Dakota County.

Other Hunting Information

Spring Lake Archery Course
A state-of-the-art archery course permits hunters to practice archery in a realistic environment. Fee.

Hunter Safety Training
Anyone born after December 31, 1979 must have a Hunter Safety Certificate to purchase a hunting license.

Minnesota Hunting Regulations and Licenses
Minnesota Department of Natural Resources locations, county and city license centers carry licenses as do sporting goods stores and baitshops. Some convenience stores and hardware stores also carry licenses.

Did You Know?