Go Fishing on Leech Lake This Spring!

Go Fishing on Leech Lake This Spring!

April 14, 2023

man holding a fish on leech lake

Anglers from all over the Midwest travel to Leech Lake due to its diverse fishing opportunities, natural attractions, wildlife, and cultural significance. In a thriving geographic location and with nearly 112,000 acres containing many bays, Leech Lake provides ample vegetation and the optimal habitat for a diverse population of fish. In addition to its diverse wildlife both in the water and out, Leech Lake in Walker, Minnesota is abundant in recreational activities, surrounded by the Chippewa National Rainforest, and home to several Ojibwe communities.

What to Fish For

Muskies can be hard to catch, which makes fishing for them even more enticing. Leech Lake is also known as a top destination for fishing walleye which happen to be the tastiest. Additionally, you’ll find northern pike, largemouth bass, black crappie, bluegill, sunfish, yellow perch, and more. Keep an eye on lake temperatures and wind to help determine when certain fish spawn, usually occurring during April and May. Navigate towards weed beds and shallow bay areas where muskies and walleyes like to rest after spawning. Additionally, spotting schools of shiners means larger fish are on the prowl right behind them. Patience could leave you luring in a 40 to 50-inch trophy.  Our depth and vegetation maps will also help point you in the right direction.

Boat Rentals, Tours, and Guides

Perhaps you’re a beginner boater or simply want to relax during your summer getaway, Leech Lake is also equipped with boat rentals, fishing guides and tours. It takes a lot of planning to haul your boat into another lake, so why not seek a professional guide who knows Leech Lake like the back of their hand? Leisure Outdoor Adventures offers just that with personable guides who have the best of the best equipment to fish and learn all about this fishing hotspot. If you’d rather enjoy a serene day fishing on your own, Trappers Landing has fishing and pontoon rentals. The public docs on Walker Bay are also available to fish off, leaving you with more convenience.

Additional Fishing Tips

Browse our fishing report to better understand the recent climate for fishing on Leech Lake. We’ve got a few of our own fishing tips when it comes to the most sought-after fish.


Muskies tend to like shallower areas, with around two-to-three feet of water and can be very aggressive and reactive, making them a challenging catch. Using a wire leader will help ensure you don’t lose this finicky fish with sharp front teeth as well as using a 70-80 pound braided fishing line. As the waters are still cool in the spring they will opt for easier smaller bait but once the water warms, using larger bait will bring better luck. Did you know that muskies got their name from the Ojibwe word maashkinoozhe, meaning “great fish”?


A medium power six-to-seven foot spinning rod and sized 35 real will work best with live bait such as minnows, leeches, and worms. Jigging is the most successful technique for catching walleye, whether that’s with artificial or live bait. They typically resort to hanging out in the deeper areas of the lake during the day and move to shallow waters at dusk to feed. They also take shelter in weed beds, near packed sand and gravel. Walleyes derived their name due to their pearlescent eye which helps them see with little light.

Whether you’re a beginner or intermediate fisherman or woman, heading to Leech Lake already makes you ahead of the fishing game. While fishing is one of the most popular activities to do in Walker, Minnesota, there’s also hiking, biking, sailing, jet skiing, and so much more. Not to mention, the stunning views and being immersed in nature will create memories of a lifetime. It’s the perfect summer getaway.



Ready for an adventure?
Subscribe to get our fishing report sent directly to your inbox as well as current deals, travel ideas, and lodging options.