Minnesota > Ice Fishing Minnesota

Early ice trip! From New York. (Upstate not nyc)


Hey everyone thanks for taking the time to look at this post.

The season is coming to an end here in Ny and Iím about ready to head back off to work. I felt I should get the word out now and start getting some feed back and tips/ parking access locations. Iím thinking of tryin for maybe the week after thanksgiving. Thatís almost a month before Iíve ever been on ice here.

Iím thinking either red lake or Mille lacs. Big names I hear about. Any other or better options Iím open to suggestions. Thanks.

Not sure of accommodations or if I may camp on the ice but I have seen JRís upper red service and a few others but Iím not positive about when they get the skid houses and castles out there or if I even feel like renting one.

So all in all itís very early but I would like to plan correctly.
Thanks for any and all info.

Tight lines stay safe for the remainder of the season

Grew up fishing Mille Lacs. Was a power house fishery in the late 80s-90s. Lots of great structure and lots of fish. The Jumbo perch were plentiful back then. We had a permanent house up there for many winters. Usually by Christmas in Northern Mn, folks are driving on lakes. I know the fishing there and regulations have changed, slot limits and 1 walleye limit. Upper Red and Lower Red are good as well. I Suggest Lake Of The Woods as well. Incredible fishery! Miles of water to fish. Arnesonís Lake lodge on arnesons point has a really cool webcam.(lots of 24 hr ice activity)  They run an outfitter business and rent huts. Mille lacs has a ton of great ice house rentals around the entire lake. Approx. 52 miles around by car and 18 miles across. Structure wiseÖ9 mile flat and 3 mile use to be our old stomping grounds. Caught a ton of great fish there and some big eyes when I lived there. Still have a lot of buds out there and my Aunt and Uncle live there. Hope this was helpful. Reach out with any questions. Happy to help anytime. 👍

As hardwater said Mille Lacs can still be really good but itís not what it used to be.  If keeping/eating walleyes is part of what you are after then Mille Lacs is tough.  Lots of good resorts and public acceses to pull out from here and you can get to some structure within a short hike if itís not thick enough to drive.  Iím guessing you wonít have a wheeler or snowmobile with you.

Red Lake is much farther north with fewer options to access the lake.  Red can be amazing at early ice and the opportunity to keep fish is much better.  Downside is it can be a hike to get to a break line if the ice isnít thick enough.  You can only fish the eastern 3rd of Upper Red lake, the rest of the lake and all of lower are on a reservation.

If you are staying multiple days then Red puts you in reach of Lake of the Woods which can be a great day trip.  Mille Lacs has many smaller lakes in the area to try.

Hope this helps

URL was great last week.....  :thumbsup:

Thanks everyone. This helps for good starts. I fish Lake Ontario here in ny and chaumont bay world class walleye Iím not really needing the size to catch looking for numbers and eatable walleye. My target time frame is leaving ny day after thanksgiving, so I know thatís early and I may have to find some smaller waters. Hope not tho.  A good probability will be that I bring a sled. So 4.5-5Ē and Iím on and moving. Thinking camping a nite or 2 then a stay some where and another nite or 2 camping Maybe stay somewhere for the weekend


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