Ice Fishing

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cycloneman003

Well-Known Member
Jan 14, 2008
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Madison, WI
Planning on taking a trip this winter with my father to spend a few days ice fishing. Any suggesting on ice fishing lodges/resorts in Midwest? We've been looking at few places (Lake of the Woods, MN, Willow Lake, SD, etc.) and curious if there are any fishermen on here that have recommendations!

EDIT: To clarify, we'd be looking for a place that would supply most of the gear as well (we're novices!). Seems like Northern Minnesota is the area where these types of resorts are... rather than finding lodging and coordinating fishing separately.
 
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zarnold56

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Aug 9, 2009
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I've heard good things about Devils Lake in ND. I think we are planning a trip there this year. We usually go to the Webster SD area but dad is getting older so want to so something different before he gets too much older
 
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madguy30

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Nov 15, 2011
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Not sure what your travel limits are for time/ambition but northern WI has lots of air bnb type places on or around smaller lakes.
 

cytor

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Nov 20, 2011
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Lake of the Woods...

I have Ice fished there several times. Awesome Walleye and Perch bite. Occasional eel pout comes along. Lake of the Woods is usually always hopping. The one time I was there where it was slow, I hopped in the car and drove down to Upper Red and killed it there for the day.

You won't be disappointed.
 

AuH2O

Well-Known Member
Sep 7, 2013
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Lake of the Woods...

I have Ice fished there several times. Awesome Walleye and Perch bite. Occasional eel pout comes along. Lake of the Woods is usually always hopping. The one time I was there where it was slow, I hopped in the car and drove down to Upper Red and killed it there for the day.

You won't be disappointed.
I have been thinking about hitting up some of the smaller lakes north of Brainerd. Have done some summer and fall fishing and have a good enough idea of where the fish are.

Fishing something as massive as the Reds would be really intimidating to me. I'm curious - did you know the lake ahead of time? I'm just wondering where you would even begin.
 

NWICY

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Sep 2, 2012
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I have been thinking about hitting up some of the smaller lakes north of Brainerd. Have done some summer and fall fishing and have a good enough idea of where the fish are.

Fishing something as massive as the Reds would be really intimidating to me. I'm curious - did you know the lake ahead of time? I'm just wondering where you would even begin.
Don't a lot of folks just hire a guide when they go up to those big lakes? I've never been but I've had friends who have went roads are plowed and shacks are set, they just take you to where the fish are hopefully.
 

cycloneman003

Well-Known Member
Jan 14, 2008
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Madison, WI
Lake of the Woods...

I have Ice fished there several times. Awesome Walleye and Perch bite. Occasional eel pout comes along. Lake of the Woods is usually always hopping. The one time I was there where it was slow, I hopped in the car and drove down to Upper Red and killed it there for the day.

You won't be disappointed.
Lake of the Woods seems to the most common recommendation I've found in my research. What time of year do they typically have enough ice for vehicles to get out there?
 

1100011CS

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Oct 5, 2007
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Marshalltown
Don't a lot of folks just hire a guide when they go up to those big lakes? I've never been but I've had friends who have went roads are plowed and shacks are set, they just take you to where the fish are hopefully.
That's what we've done at LoW. Sleep in cabins on shore, get hauled out to ice shacks where they think fish are. If you don't catch anything, they move you. Then they clean your fish at the end of the day and cook it for you if you want.
 
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1100011CS

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Oct 5, 2007
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Marshalltown

Acylum

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Nov 18, 2006
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Don't a lot of folks just hire a guide when they go up to those big lakes? I've never been but I've had friends who have went roads are plowed and shacks are set, they just take you to where the fish are hopefully.
There are a lot of places on Lake of the Woods that do this exact thing. Take you out to a shack in a Snowcat in the morning, come back for you later in the day. Unless a blizzard sets in and you have to spend the night. Which isn’t as fun as you’d think.
 

barometriclow

Well-Known Member
Jan 31, 2009
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Ankeny
For sleeper houses try Lyon Sleepers or Zippel Bay Resort both on LOTW or Red Lake Ice Cabins.

Almost all the resorts on LOTW have shore cabins. We are reserved at Zippel in late January.
 

cytor

Well-Known Member
Nov 20, 2011
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I have been thinking about hitting up some of the smaller lakes north of Brainerd. Have done some summer and fall fishing and have a good enough idea of where the fish are.

Fishing something as massive as the Reds would be really intimidating to me. I'm curious - did you know the lake ahead of time? I'm just wondering where you would even begin.
The Sportsman Lodge is a good place to start your research. They will run you out to their houses. If no luck, they will move you around to other houses. You come back in after dark and stay on shore in a cabin or facility.

Upper Red is the only lake you can fish of the 2 Reds. Lower Red is native American property. There is only 1 road to upper Red and it takes you to a resort where you can get on the lake. Great fishing there, too.
 

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