Northern Pike

Most of the lakes in this area have good numbers of northern pike in them.  If you want to catch some northern pike, you can definitely get plenty of action here with some quality-sized fish mixed in too.  Take a look below to learn more about the area lakes that have northern pike in them.

Lake Emily

Emily Lake is a 664 acre lake located in Northern Crow Wing County.  The city of Emily is located off the northwest corner of the lake.  Emily is a fairly shallow lake and it has a maximum depth of only 15 feet.  A public access is located on southwest corner of the lake. A channel provides access to Mary Lake.  This lake typically has had good numbers of northern pike, low to moderate numbers of walleye depending on the year and other fish include largemouth bass, bluegill, crappie and perch.

MN DNR Lake Information Report

Lake Mary

Lake Mary totals just over 400 acres.  Public access to Lake Mary can be obtained via the Little Pine River from Emily Lake.  This lake has good numbers of crappie in it with low numbers of game fish such as northern pike, largemouth bass and walleye.  Other fish include bluegill and perch.

MN DNR Lake Information Report

Lawrence Lake

Lawrence Lake is located on the east edge of Outing in Cass County.  Lawrence Lake covers 230 acres with a maximum depth of 71 feet and about 38% of the lake is less than 15 feet deep.  There is a boat launch and small park located on the west end of the lake about 0.2 miles east of Highway 6 on County Road 58.  Smaller boats can also reach Lawrence Lake from Roosevelt Lake via the outlet channel.  Northern pike, walleye and largemouth bass are the dominant game fish in this lake.  Panfish include bluegill, crappie, rock bass and perch.

MN DNR Lake Information Report

Roosevelt Lake

Roosevelt Lake covers more than 1,500 acres and has a maximum depth of 129 feet.  This lake is a solid fishing lake for a variety of fish.  Northern pike, largemouth bass and walleye have been the primary game fish in this lake.  Muskie were stocked in this lake in 2011 and they plan on consistently stocking the lake on even-numbered years, which is great for muskie anglers.  Smallmouth bass are also available in the lake.  Panfish include bluegill, crappie, rock bass and perch.

MN DNR Lake Information Report

Ruth Lake

Ruth Lake is a 588 acre lake located just north of the city of Emily in Crow Wing County.  A public access is located on the northwest side of the lake.  Development is heavy won the lake.  The maximum depth is 39 feet and about 34% of the lake is 15 feet deep or less. This lake has been a good fishing lake for a variety of fish.  Northern pike, largemouth bass and panfish are the dominant fish in the lake.  Walleye are also available.  Panfish include bluegill, crappie and perch.

MN DNR Lake Information Report

Washburn Lake

Washburn is a 1,554 acre lake located about 3 miles northwest of Outing, MN in Cass County.  The lake is comprised of 3 distinct basins.  The maximum depth is 111 feet and about 48% of the lake is 15 feet deep or less.  Game fish include walleye, northern pike, largemouth bass and smallmouth bass.  Panfish include bluegill, crappie, rock bass and perch.

MN DNR Lake Information Report

Thunder Lake

Thunder Lake is a 1,330 acre lake located 7 miles south of Remer in Cass County.  This lake is deep and the shoreline drops off rapidly.  The maximum depth is 95 feet and only 17% of the lake is less than 15 feet deep.  This lake is heavily developed.  There are currently good numbers of walleye in the lake.  Northern pike, largemouth bass and smallmouth bass are also available.  Panfish include bluegill, crappie, rock bass and perch.

MN DNR Lake Information Report

Some of the Bigger Bodies of Water That Aren’t Too Far Away

Leech Lake

Leech Lake is located mainly within the Leech Lake Indian Reservation and completely within the Chippewa National Forest in north central Minnesota.  The Lake is one of the most popular tourism destinations in all of Minnesota.  There are numerous recreational opportunities here such as fishing, boating, hunting, golfing, hiking, biking and much more.  You will find a variety of accommodations here to fit your needs.

The primary species of fish that most anglers come to Leech Lake are walleye, northern pike and muskie.  All 3 species are here in good enough numbers for anglers to target them and catch them.  There are some trophy-sized fish here too for all 3 species of fish.

This lake has such a diverse fishery.  If you’re just looking for action, you can fish with live bait and catch a little bit of everything.  For those of you looking to target largemouth bass, there is a solid fishery here and most anglers don’t even think about fishing for bass here.  Find the weeds, fish shallow and don’t be shocked when a pike hits your bass lures.

Visit our Leech Lake Section

Mille Lacs Lake

Mille Lacs Lake is Minnesota’s second-largest lake and it covers 132,000 surface acres.  Mille Lacs is a great lake for outdoor recreation, but it has been known for its outstanding walleye fishery over the years.  There was a walleye collapse and they are hoping to be coming out of that now, however, there are plenty of restrictions on the lake as far as keeping walleye throughout the seasons.  This has been a huge debate on the lake.  Fortunately, the smallmouth bass fishing is off the charts good right now which is helping make up for the walleye issues.  Mille Lacs also offers good fishing for a variety of other fish such as muskie, northern pike, perch and even largemouth bass.  Crappie, bluegill and other sunfish round out the fishery.

Visit our Mille Lacs Lake Section

Whitefish Chain of Lakes

The Whitefish Area of Minnesota features the Whitefish Chain of Lakes, which is a very popular chain of lakes for boating and fishing.  There are many resorts here and plenty of places to find a bite to eat.  This region is located just north of Brainerd, Minnesota.

This area is known for its fast action largemouth bass fishing and some solid fishing for pike and walleye.  You will find some good-sized fish in the Whitefish Chain, but don’t expect to have all the good fishing spots to yourself.  This chain of lakes has a lot of people that fish these waters every summer.  It’s a very good fishing destination if you’re looking to catch some fish and have some fun around the water.

Visit our White Chain of Lakes section.

Best Baits for Northern Pike

Northern pike are known for eating just about everything they can get the mouths on and there is definitely some truth to that.  For the most part, if it swims, pike may eat it.  There are some baits that definitely will catch more pike than others though.  Spinners, crankbaits, spoons, swimbaits and soft plastics are some of the best lures for targeting pike.  Live baits such as minnows and perch are great baits too.

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Live Baits for Northern Pike

Lures for Northern Pike

Best Rigs for Northern Pike

There are many different rigs you can use for northern pike, however, since pike are so aggressive, you really don’t need to use as many of them as you would if you were trying to get good at largemouth bass fishing.  For most situations, you can keep it real simple with a jighead and a minnow or soft plastic bait.  To learn about some of the rigs that you can use, take a look at our best rigs for northern pike page.

Best Techniques for Northern Pike

Anglers catch pike with many different techniques.  Casting, trolling and drifting are most popular ways to target pike, but there are some other methods that also work well too.

To learn more, take a look at our best techniques for northern pike page.

Learn More About Northern Pike

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

Visit our northern pike fishing website to learn more.