Fishing Lake Vermilion

Planning Your Lake Vermilion Fishing Trip

Lake Vermilion, with 40,000 acres of water, 365 islands, and hundreds of bays and coves, is known for walleye, small-mouth bass, northern pike, crappie, panfish, and muskies. Join us this year for the Fishing Opener!

If you're visiting Lake Vermilion for the first time, we suggest you consider contracting with one of our professional fishing guides. Our recommended guides can be found on this page. You may call them directly for your half-day or full-day fishing experience. Don't forget to ask them to prepare a shore lunch!

Lures for northern pike, jigs for walleyes, bobbers, minnows, leeches, and crawlers can all be purchased in our tackle shop. We have fishing rods available for guest use, and cane poles for kids to use off our docks. You may also purchase your fishing license in our lodge, but we recommend purchasing in advance online.

You're welcome to bring your own boat to Ludlow's! Our staff will launch your boat and provide secure storage for your trailer, as well as covered dockage with electric outlets. You may also choose to rent a boat for your stay.

Ludlow's Island Fishing Packages

"We're probably a little spoiled. A 50-inch muskie is huge anywhere you catch it, but around here, no one gets that excited about a 50-inch fish."Bill Rosner, Lake Vermilion Guide

Species by Season

2018 Minnesota Fishing Regulations

Walleye: The best fishing for walleye is in the spring and fall. May, June, and early July are great, then it picks up again in mid-August.

Northern Pike: Like walleye, the best times to fish for Northern Pike are in the spring and fall.

Bass: Bass can be found year-round on Vermilion, but locations vary throughout the seasons. We're happy to give advice on where they're currently biting!

Panfish (Crappies, Bluegills, and Perch): Spring is the best time for panfish, when the water starts to warm up. You may also have some luck in fall.

Muskie: The 2018 Muskie season opens on June 2nd, and early June is a good time to catch them. Muskie fishing slows down in the summer months, then gets great again in the fall.

Michael is our resident fisherman, and you can email him with any questions while planning your fishing trip.


A Well-Managed Fishery

The Minnesota Department of Resources takes a very active role ensuring that Lake Vermilion produces healthy classes each year, especially for walleye, northern pike and muskellunge. In fact, since the year 2000, more than 175 million walleye fry have been stocked in Lake Vermilion.

The DNR has also been very aggressive in developing Lake Vermilion's muskie fishery. As you've likely heard, the work has been paying off! The lake consistently produced 50-inch and above muskies — many caught by Ludlow's Island anglers.

In 2009, word spread around Lake Vermilion of a monster muskie — one that could have been the state record. The fisherman released the behemoth fish, however, to be caught another day.

In addition to the DNR, a dedicated group of citizens has been working to improve Lake Vermilion since 1968: the Vermilion Lake Association. For nearly three decades, the group has been counting and surveying the lake's loon population. (No small task on 40,000 acres of water.)

The VLA also monitors water quality, maintains a number of shore lunch sites around the lake and works to prevent the spread of invasive species, like Eurasian water milfoil and zebra mussels.