Where To Go Ice Fishing: Top Spots To Travel To



If you’ve never gone ice fishing, now’s the time to try it. Wait, go ice fishing? Why? Sure, if you’re a serious angler, you might scoff — but ice fishing is more about community and less about the fish. You’re rarely out at ice fishing spots alone; it’s a family event, a sort of tailgate-on-ice. What's not to like?

Yes, indeed, you should go ice fishing — but you shouldn’t do it just any old way. Stay away from the hotels or tents, and consider making ice fishing a completely different experience — with an RV! But where to go ice fishing for the best experience?

The Best Spots To Go Ice Fishing This Winter

Where to go ice fishing to really see what it’s all about? Grab a few friends and family members, and head out on the road to some of these choice spots!

Brainerd, Minnesota

The best place for ice fishing in the U.S. may just be Minnesota — in Brainerd, Minnesota, specifically. When winter arrives, Brainerd becomes a mecca for ice fishing. Gull Lake is widely considered to be one of the best lakes for ice fishing in the Land of 10,000 Lakes.

Plus, when you visit Brainerd for ice fishing, you have a chance to enter charitable ice-fishing contests like the Brainerd Jaycees Ice Fishing Extravaganza (with prizes that can be worth hundreds of thousands of dollars)!

Gull Lake isn’t the only place to grab a piece of the ice-fishing action. There are 460 lakes within a 25-mile radius of Brainerd, affording ice fishers countless opportunities to drill a hole, cast a line, crack open a cold one, and chat with friends and family while you wait for crappie, walleye, largemouth bass, and bluegill (and other species!) to bite.

Devils Lake, North Dakota

The northernmost states in the midwest tend to make for the best ice fishing, and after Minnesota, North Dakota is a great option. You should hop in your RV and head to Devils Lake, North Dakota, called “the perch capital of the world” (there’s also walleye and northern pike).

As with Minnesota ice fishing spots, there’s an ice-fishing tourney at Devils Lake, too: The DLVFD Ice Fishing Tournament!

With 4,500 to 5,000 anglers taking part, the DLVFD Ice-Fishing Tournament is the largest ice-fishing tournament in the midwest. It has been held on an annual basis for almost 40 years, and the 24,000 tickets available tend to sell out quickly once they go on sale each October.

Don’t miss a chance to see for yourself what all the fuss is about!

Lake Winnebago, Wisconsin

Rounding out the list of top spots for ice fishing is Lake Winnebago, Wisconsin. Lake Winnebago is home to the world’s largest self-sustaining sturgeon population, and each February, a sturgeon spearing contest is held (with licenses going on sale the preceding October, requiring you to get a bit of homework done beforehand if you want to take part).

You can also find largemouth and smallmouth bass, catfish, and walleye at Lake Winnebago, so don’t think your fishing options are limited!

At the start of the ice-fishing season, most of the ice hugs the Lake Winnebago shoreline, but by the end of December, the ice has moved to the center of the lake. If you plan your ice-fishing visit to Lake Winnebago in January or February (don’t forget about the sturgeon spearing!).

Why Go Ice Fishing with an RV

You could find a cabin or house rental when visiting popular ice fishing locations, but why bother with the hassle of making bookings when you can bring your accommodations with you in an RV?

Of course, ice fishing usually is done on the surface of a frozen lake, and RVs aren’t known for being light vehicles. If that concerns you, don’t worry: You can park your rig on the equally frozen shoreline and then go drill yourself some ice fishing holes just a few steps away.

You’ll need an ice fishing shelter to protect you from the wind, but you can take a break any time and hop into your RV for a few moments of warmth before heading out for the next round!

Alternatively, you could bring a camper and modify it to become a transportable ice-fishing shelter; you’ll be in your element while mostly protected from the elements!

Try Out Ice Fishing This Winter in a Cruise America RV

Now that you know where to go ice fishing in an RV this winter, it’s time to plan your trip! Obviously, you’re going to go ice fishing with an RV, so get in touch with Cruise America.

For more than 50 years, Cruise America has been hooking up RV travelers like you with the best recreational vehicles. You can rest assured you’ll be in excellent hands for your next ice-fishing trip in a Cruise RV.

So, whether you want to rent an RV or are in the market to buy a used RV, go with Cruise America for your next ice-fishing trip. Visit or call Cruise America today!