Smallmouth Bass

The lakes in this area tend to be better largemouth bass lakes than smallmouth bass and in the lakes that do have smallmouth bass, these fish are not the dominant species of fish. The Alexandria area has so many good lakes where the primary species of game fish are usually walleye, largemouth bass or northern pike.

Lake Aaron (Douglas County, MN)

Lake Aaron is a shallow, fertile basin located just west of Millerville in northern Douglas County.  The maximum depth is 16 feet.  This lake is managed primarily as a bass lake with walleye being secondary.  Largemouth bass are abundant in the lake and there are some big bass here as well.  Smallmouth bass are also in Lake Aaron, but they are not very common.  Northern pike do well in this lake.  There are good numbers of pike to go along with some big pike too.  Bluegill, crappie, perch and rock bass are also available.

MN DNR Lake Information Report

Lake Geneva (Alexandria Chain of Lakes)

Lake Geneva is part of the Alexandria Chain of Lakes.  Lake Geneva is a 631 acre lake located on the eastern edge of the city of Alexandria.  Boaters can access other lakes within the chain via navigable channels and there are two public access points on the shoreline of this lake.  The access on the east shoreline is steep and may be difficult for some to use. There are good numbers of a variety of fish in Lake Geneva.  Northern pike, largemouth bass, walleye, bluegill and crappie are the main species of fish that anglers target here. Other fish include smallmouth bass, perch, rock bass, bullhead and some others.

MN DNR Lake Information Report

Lake Ida (Douglas County, MN)

Lake Ida is a large (4,427 acres), moderately fertile lake located northwest of Alexandria. Maximum depth exceeds 100 feet with a mean depth of around 28 feet deep. Lake Ida is connected to Lake Miltona to the north and Lake Charley to the south via non-navigable channels.  Lake Ida is managed for walleye and the walleye fishery is very good here.  This lake also offers good fishing for largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, northern pike, crappie and bluegill.  Perch and rock bass are available too.

MN DNR Lake Information Report

Lake Miltona (Douglas County, MN)

Lake Miltona is a large (5,724 acres), moderately fertile lake that is located north of Alexandria between the towns of Miltona and Leaf Valley.  Its maximum depth exceeds 100 feet, although, almost half of this lake is 15 feet or less in depth.  The muskie fishing is what stands out most about Lake Miltona because most of the area lakes do not have muskie available.  Muskie up to and above 50 inches are possible on Lake Miltona.  Other species of fish that anglers target are largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, northern pike, yellow perch, black crappie and bluegill.  Largemouth bass outnumber smallmouth bass, but there are good sized largemouth and smallmouth bass in this lake.  Northern pike tend to run on the small side, but there are some fish available to catch here.

MN DNR Lake Information Report

Lake Minnewaska (Pope County, MN)

Lake Minnewaska is a 7,110-acre lake located in central Pope County between Glenwood and Starbuck.  For its size, this lake is relatively shallow with a maximum depth of 32 feet. It is the largest lake in the county and it is a popular lake for boaters and anglers.  This lake is managed for walleye, but the lake supports a very diverse fishery.  Other fish include northern pike, largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, bluegill, perch and crappie.

MN DNR Lake Information Report

Lake Moses (Douglas County, MN)

Lake Moses is an 822-acre lake located approximately one mile west of Millerville in northwest Douglas County.  This lake has an abundance of emergent vegetation and a well defined weedline.  The water is very clear and you can see in excess of 15 feet under normal conditions.  The fishing is good on Lake Moses for northern pike, largemouth bass, rockbass and bluegill.  Other fish include walleye, crappie, perch and smallmouth bass.

MN DNR Lake Information Report

Lake Osakis

Lake Osakis is rated as one of the top fishing lakes in the state.  This lake has a healthy population of walleye, northern pike, largemouth bass, crappie and some smallmouth bass.  The lake has plenty of resorts and lodges, boat rentals, gift shops and restaurants to make your trip more comfortable.  The lake is located only a couple of hours from Minneapolis which makes it an ideal place for people looking to getaway for the weekend.

MN DNR Lake Information Report

Lake Victoria (Alexandria Chain of Lakes)

Lake Victoria is part of the Alexandria Chain of Lakes.  Lake Victoria is a 419 acre, horseshoe-shaped basin located on the eastern city limits of Alexandria.  There are navigable channels that connect to Lake Geneva and Lake Jessie.  These connecting channels are shallow and could be problematic for deep draught boats.  This lake offers good fishing for largemouth bass, walleye, crappie and bluegill.  Other fish include smallmouth bass, perch and rock bass.

MN DNR Lake Information Report

Best Baits for Smallmouth Bass

Smallmouth bass will eat a variety of different baits.  Minnows, nightcrawlers and leeches are definitely the best live baits for smallmouth bass.

When it comes to artificial lures, you have lots of options.  Soft plastic crayfish, twin tail grubs, worms and minnow baits are very effective.  Hard baits such as  crankbaits, jerkbaits and spinners also work great.

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Live Baits for Smallmouth Bass

Lures for Smallmouth Bass

Best Rigs for Smallmouth Bass

With so many different soft plastics to use, you have so many different rigs that work great for smallmouth bass.  The drop shot rig, a simple jighead, standup jigheads and scrounger jigheads are some of the best rigs for smallmouth bass.  To see our full list, take a look at our best rigs for smallmouth bass page.

Best Techniques for Smallmouth Bass

There are so many different techniques you can use for smallmouth bass since they can be found shallow, deep and anywhere in between.  Anglers usually cast for them, but jigging, drop shotting and drifting are also some great techniques for smallmouth bass.

To learn more, take a look at our best techniques for smallmouth bass page.

Learn More About Smallmouth Bass

Our smallmouth bass fishing section has tons of tips on the best lures, live baits, where to catch them and how to catch them.

Visit our smallmouth bass fishing website to learn more.