It’s a great time of the year for us Midwesterners. Ice has left our lakes and anglers look forward to hitting the open water in pursuit of our favorite fish. Boating enthusiasts also are prepping their crafts to go cruisin’, but it may be a little early yet to inflate the tubes and shine up the wakeboards/ knee boards.
Turkey hunters have hit the woods in hopes that big Tom they roosted the night before will zero in on their calls come first light. Trap shooters also are out in force on the range having fun busting clays. (You know we now sell guns, right?) Campers are airing out and checking out their tents, and hikers are siliconing their boots and emptying backpacks.
Yes, it’s a great time to be an outdoor enthusiast!
Like anglers in many other states, here in Minnesota, we are waiting for the “fishing opener,” on May 9 when the season opens for our prized walleyes and northern pike.
Here are some Fun Facts on fishing in Minnesota, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and the 2011 National Survey of Fishing, Hunting and Wildlife-Associated Recreation, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. :
- About 500,000 people are expected to fish on opening day of the walleye and northern pike season, Saturday, May 9.
- Minnesota has 11,842 lakes, 5,400 of which are managed by DNR Fisheries. There are 18,000 miles of fishable rivers and streams, including 3,800 miles of trout streams.
- Although not every kind of fish lives everywhere, 162 species of fish can be found in Minnesota waters.
- Minnesota ranks second in resident fishing participation at 32 percent, second only to Alaska.
- Minnesota is the third most-popular inland fishing destination in the country.
- Minnesota ranks sixth among states with the highest number of anglers. The top three states are Florida, Texas and Michigan.
- The most sought-after fish species, in order of preference, are crappie, panfish, walleye, and northern pike.
So, if you are looking for a good place to take the family for a vacation that includes some fishing … just sayin’. Here’s a link to Explore Minnesota, which has a TON of information on places of interest.
The bonus, of course, is if you are passing through the Twin Cities, you can stop and check out the deals in our South St. Paul, Minn., Retail Store! Have you checked out all the additions to our Fishing section? We’ve added top brands, such as G.Loomis, and added to our selection of Shimano, Daiwa, Abu Garcia, and many others! No, there is no need to shop elsewhere for your fishing gear!
Also, don’t forget to Share The Thrill and show us how you are enjoying the Great Outdoors by submitting a report to our Trophy Gallery, or share a great photo you took in our View of the Day section.
And remember, each time you share something – even a comment on an article – you are entered in a drawing to win a $100 Sportsman’s Guide gift card for that calendar month. That’s enough to buy some new gear!
Have fun and be safe out there!
How about it Guide Outdoors Readers: Are you pumped to Get Outdoors? Tell us about what activity makes you dash for the door at the end of your work day!