Stream trout fishing opens statewide Saturday

Minnesota’s popular warm weather stream trout season opens Saturday, April 13, with quality fishing opportunities in every region of the state.

“The trout fishing opportunities are improving through investments in trout habitat, angler access, sound land use, and science-based management.  Anglers help pay for this work when they buy fishing licenses and trout stamps.” said Jamison Wendel, DNR stream habitat consultant.

Minnesota has roughly 3,800 miles of designated trout streams. Its four cold water hatcheries produce more than 1.7 million fingerlings and yearlings for stocking each year. Anglers fishing on designated trout waters must have a trout validation in addition to an angling license.

Southeastern Minnesota offers some of the best trout fishing in the upper Midwest, and the area’s stream levels have returned to normal after the spring melt. Anglers can look forward to a great trout opener, said Ron Benjamin, Lanesboro area fisheries supervisor, with great numbers of adult fish.

“These are the good ol’ days right now. It doesn’t get any better than this,” Benjamin said. “We encourage folks to get out and enjoy the fishing.” 

The southeastern part of the state has a wide variety of streams and fishing opportunities – everything from big waters with fly or bait casting, to tiny streams that require an angler to crawl through brush to access. There are even places to float a drift boat like in some western states.

“Basically any fishing opportunity somebody wants, it’s here. And our populations are as good as any place in the country,” Benjamin said.

New for this year, there are 10 additional miles of easements, mostly in the Lanesboro area, that allow access exclusively for anglers and landowners, 66 feet from the centerline of the streams.

“Adding additional easements increases angling opportunity in many areas previously closed to the public,” Wendel said.

Fishing easements and stream accesses can be found online in maps on the DNR’s trout fishing page.

Complete trout season details are available at mndnr.gov/fishing. Information on trout fishing, including a calendar of upcoming events, and how to access trout streams is online at mndnr.gov/fishing/troutstreams.