What are some of the best fishing spots and techniques for catching fish in the Mississippi River

What are some of the best fishing spots and techniques for catching fish in the Mississippi River

Best fishing spots in the Mississippi River

The Mississippi River is a perfect spot for fishermen. There‚Äôs loads of different fish to catch! Here’re some of the best places and techniques to try.

Lake Pepin in Minnesota is a top spot for walleye. Early morning or late evening are best for fishing them.

At Lock & Dam 13, catfish and walleye are plentiful. Cut bait and fishing near the bottom usually works best.

Upper Mississippi National Wildlife and Fish Refuge is over 260 miles long. You can find bass, crappie, bluegill, and northern pike here. Live bait and fishing around sunken logs and brush piles can be effective.

Pro Tip: Learn local regulations and get any permits you need before fishing in the Mississippi.

Upper Mississippi River

Fishin’ the Upper Mississippi River? It’s a popular spot! You’ll find a variety of species. The towering bluffs and banks, the backwaters, and oxbows of tributaries, all make it a perfect spot. Let’s talk about the hot fishing spots and techniques for the Upper Mississippi River.

Lake Pepin

Lake Pepin is a widening of the Upper Mississippi River and is a great spot for fishing. Two popular areas are Maiden Rock and Lake City, where you can catch lots of walleye and northern pike. For bass fishing, head to the backwaters of Lake Pepin, where the water is nice and warm. Trolling with crankbaits, live bait rigs, and spinnerbaits are good for walleye and pike. Topwater lures in the morning or evening are great for catching bass.

Remember to check the fishing regulations and get the necessary permits.
Pro tip – Have patience! It may take some time to find the right spots and techniques, but the rewards are worth it.

Pool 4

Pool 4 on the Upper Mississippi River is a must-visit spot for fishing enthusiasts! Here are some of the best fishing spots and techniques to catch fish in this stretch of the river.

Best Fishing Spots:

  • Lake Pepin – Home to walleye, northern pike, and crappie. Jigs, spinnerbaits, and live bait rigs are great for catching walleye and northern pike.
  • Alma Dam – Known for smallmouth bass and walleye populations. Try jigging or casting with plastic worms, tubes, and crawfish imitations for smallmouth bass.
  • Bay City Flats – Featuring backwaters and channels perfect for bluegill, crappie, and bass. Use small jigs or live bait to catch these fish.


  • Jigging – Very effective for catching fish in the Mississippi. Tie a jig to your line, cast it out, and reel in slowly. Pause every few seconds to mimic prey movements.
  • Live Bait Rigs – Popular technique for catching fish in the river. Use live bait like worms, minnows, or leeches to attract fish and wait for a nibble before reeling in.

Fishing in Pool 4 is an enjoyable experience with lots of techniques and species!

Lake Winona

Lake Winona, on the Upper Mississippi River, has a wide variety of fish species and fishing techniques for anglers of all levels. Here are some of the top spots and methods for catching fish in the Mississippi River:

  1. Structures: Fish like to hang around rocks, logs and weed beds.
  2. Feeding times: Fish are likely to bite at feeding times, usually during dawn and dusk.
  3. Live bait: Minnows, worms or crayfish make great live bait.
  4. Jigging: Lure jigging is especially effective in deep waters.
  5. Gear: Make sure to use the right gear – a strong rod and reel, and the right bait or lures.

By following these tips, you can increase your chance of catching bass, walleye, catfish, and northern pike in the Mississippi River.

Lower Mississippi River

Fish aplenty await in the Lower Mississippi River! Beginner or experienced – it’s a great spot for anglers. Famous for its catfish and bass, let’s explore the top spots and techniques for reeling in a catch. Get ready to cast your line in the Lower Mississippi River!

Lake Onalaska

Lake Onalaska is a must-go destination for fishing fanatics in the Lower Mississippi River Basin. It offers anglers thrilling experiences! Here’s a list of the top spots and techniques for fishing in the Mississippi River:

  1. Lake Onalaska Tailwaters: This spot boasts of its walleye, sauger, perch, and catfish! Autumn to winter is the most ideal season for fishing here. Use minnows and jigs for the best results.
  2. Pool 9: This pool is the home of various fish species such as walleye, largemouth bass, crappie, catfish, and northern pike. Anglers should try trolling with crankbaits, using worms and jigs, and fly fishing.
  3. Shore Fishing: If you don’t have a boat, shore fishing is the best option. Look for eddies, points of land, and upwellings. Here, you’ll find fish often feeding.

When fishing, make sure to abide by the rules and regulations set by state laws and regulations. This helps in maintaining sustainability and promoting healthy fish populations.

Pool 9

Pool 9 of the Lower Mississippi River is full of fish, making it an ideal spot for anglers. Here are the best fishing spots and methods for catching them:

  1. Tailwaters by Lock & Dam 8 are great for Walleye & Sauger.
  2. Lansing’s side channel is a hot spot for Crappies & Bass.
  3. For Bluegill, try Mission, Brownsville & Stoddard.

To catch Walleye/Sauger, use jigs or live bait. Crankbaits & spinnerbaits work for Bass/Crappies. For Bluegill, small jigs with worms are best.

Before you go, don’t forget a valid fishing license. Follow size/catch limits too.

Pool 26

Pool 26 is THE number one spot for fishing on the Lower Mississippi River! Here’s some tips and spots to catch the best fish.

Technique: Bottom Bouncing

Perfect for catfish and other river-bottom dwellers. Use nightcrawlers, chicken livers, or stinkbaits on the hook.

Spot: Alton Tailwater

Catfish, bluegill, and crappie – from the shore or a boat.

Technique: Jigging

Use weighted lures to imitate baitfish. Great for bass, walleye, and other predators.

Spot: Chain of Rocks

Rocky ledges and deep pools. Boat fishing for walleye and smallmouth bass.

Technique: Trolling

Drag a lure behind a moving boat. Catfish and striped bass can be caught this way.

Spot: Mosenthein Island

Lots of catfish. Best fished by trolling from a boat.

Pro Tip: Get your permit and know the regulations before you go. And don’t forget the life jackets, sunscreen, and bug spray! Have a fun, safe fishing experience.

Fishing Techniques

The Mississippi River is an amazing ecosystem with many great spots to fish. Here are some of the top techniques for catching fish:

  1. Tailrace Fishing – This is when you fish below a hydroelectric dam, which attracts fish such as catfish, bass and walleye.
  2. Jigging – This vertical fishing technique uses a weighted jig to mimic a baitfish. It’s great for catching crappie, bluegill, bass and walleye.
  3. Casting Lures – This is a good way to catch smallmouth and largemouth bass as well as northern pike. Try casting spinners and topwater lures near rocks and ledges.
  4. Bottom Bouncing – Use a weighted rig to bounce bait along the riverbed, mimicking food flowing downstream. A great method for catching catfish, walleye and bass.

Before you go fishing, make sure you check local regulations and get the correct permits.

Fishing techniques for catfish in Mississippi River

Fishing for catfish in the Mississippi River can be a blast! Get the right rod and reel, baits, and techniques. And you could have a huge catch! There are many great areas to fish for catfish in the Mississippi. Let’s cover some spots and discuss the best ways to land a large one!

Using live bait

Live bait is great for catching catfish in the Mississippi River. Here are the best spots and techniques to try:

Fishing Spots:

The Mississippi River is large – locate slow-moving, deeper, and rocky areas.


  1. Use fresh live bait, such as crawfish, small shad, or cut bait.
  2. Anchor your boat in slow-moving water and let the bait settle.
  3. When the current is strong, cast your bait upstream and let it drift.
  4. Tie a few fishing jugs to a line, bait them, and let them float.

Pro Tip: Be patient and try different methods until you find the right spot and bait!

Drift fishing

Drift fishing is great for catching catfish in the Mississippi River. You need a strong rod and reel, weight, and bait or lure, like live bait or jigs. To find the best spots, look for deep, slow-moving water, sandbars, and tailwater areas below dams. To succeed, pay attention to the current and adjust your drift speed and bait presentation. With the right equipment, bait, location, and tactics, you’ll be sure to land a big catfish!

Jug fishing

Grab a plastic jug or bottle (2-3 liters) and tie a fishing line to it.

Attach a hook to the line and bait it with chicken liver, cut bait, or stink bait.

Place the jug in the river and let it flow with the current.

Repeat the process with multiple jugs spaced along the river.

Check the jugs often, and if they move or bounce, you know a fish is hooked.

Other methods of catching catfish in the Mississippi River include live bait, casting from the bank, and trolling with a boat.

The best spots are deep holes, around snags or logs, and near tributaries or creek mouths.

Don’t forget: obey all local fishing regulations and safety guidelines for a successful and safe fishing experience.

Fishing techniques for walleye in Mississippi River

Anglers flock to the Mississippi River to catch walleye. These finicky fish require special fishing spots and techniques.

Here, we’ll share some of the best spots and approaches for walleye fishing in the Mississippi. Get ready to haul in a haul of walleye!

Casting and retrieving

Casting & retrieving is a great way to snag walleye in the Mississippi River. Spring & fall are a prime time, when the water’s cooler. Here’s how:

  1. Select the right rod, reel & line for the size of walleye you’re targeting.
  2. Look for a 10-20 ft deep part with a mild current.
  3. Cast your bait – jig or minnow – upstream & let it drift with the current.
  4. Reel in the line, pausing & twitching the bait to mimic a prey fish.
  5. Be patient & feel for any tugs/nibbles.
  6. Best spots: tailrace below lock & dam, deep holes around islands & mouths of large tributaries.


Trolling is a great way to catch walleye in the Mississippi River. Here’s what you need to know for success!

Best Spots: Look for areas with current breaks. Examples are where deep water meets shallow water, or around rocks, weeds, and structures. Also try wing dams, bridge abutments, and other manmade structures. These create eddies and current breaks where fish like to feed.

Techniques: Use a spinner rig or crankbait when trolling. Vary your speed until you find where the fish are biting. Try different colors, shapes, and sizes of lures. A fishfinder can help locate schools of fish. Adjust your route accordingly.


Jigging is awesome for snagging walleye in the Mississippi River. A jig is a lure resembling baitfish, and it’s a great way to attract ’em. Here’s how to jig in the Mississippi properly:

  1. Find deep holes, rocky points, and other walleye hangouts.
  2. Choose jigs with a weight & size that match the river’s depth & current.
  3. Retrieve the jig slowly, like a real prey fish.
  4. Use a plastic bait or live bait like minnows or nightcrawlers to make the lure irresistible.
  5. Experiment with different colors & patterns to see what works best.

Fishing techniques for bass in Mississippi River

Bass fishing in the Mississippi River is an enjoyable experience that many people relish. These bass are plentiful and can be tempted with a variety of lures and baits. Understanding the finest methods and their preferred habitats makes the experience more enjoyable and successful.

Here, we discuss the diverse techniques and the prime places to catch bass in the Mississippi River:

Topwater lures

Topwater lures are a must-have for bass fishing in the Mississippi River. When used right, they can be super effective at getting bass to bite.

Here are the best topwater lures to try:

  1. Popper – creates popping sound like baitfish. Best in still, shallow water.
  2. Walking bait – creates side-to-side motion like live prey. Best in clear water.
  3. Buzzbait – creates vibration and noise. Great for low light or murky water.

When fishing in the Mississippi River, look for cover and structure like rocks and logs. Try different techniques and lures to see what works best for conditions and fish.

Spinnerbaits and buzzbaits

Spinnerbaits and buzzbaits are popular fishing lures. These create a vibration and flash that attracts bass in the Mississippi River.

The best fishing spots include backwaters, weed beds, and current breaks. To use these lures effectively, you must vary the speed and retrieve.

Here are some techniques:

  1. Slow-roll just above the bottom to catch fish close to the riverbed.
  2. Burn across the surface to target active fish.
  3. Make long casts to cover a large area.
  4. Use bright colors in murky water or low light.

Pro tip: Vary the speed and retrieve for each spot.


Crankbaits are great for catching bass in the Mississippi River! They look like natural baitfish and can be used to catch a variety of fish species. Here are some tips:

  1. Look for eddies, deep pools, or areas with strong currents. These spots are great for bass fishing.
  2. Vary the speed and depth of your crankbait until you find the right pace and depth to attract the fish.
  3. Use natural colors like olive green or brown that match the water conditions and visibility.
  4. Try different styles, sizes, and shapes of crankbaits to see which ones work best.
  5. Drag the crankbait slowly along the bottom to imitate a wounded baitfish.
  6. Retrieve slower in cold water and faster in warm water.

Follow these tips to increase your chances of catching bass in the Mississippi River!

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What are some of the best fishing spots on the Mississippi River?

A: Some of the best fishing spots on the river include Lake Pepin, Pools 4, 5, and 8, the Upper Mississippi Wildlife and Fish Refuge, and the St. Anthony Falls area.

Q: What fish can I catch in the Mississippi River?

A: The Mississippi River is home to a variety of fish species, including catfish, bass, walleye, northern pike, and sauger.

Q: What techniques should I use to catch fish in the Mississippi River?

A: Different techniques work well for different fish species, but some popular techniques include using live bait or lures, trolling, and drift fishing.

Q: When is the best time to fish on the Mississippi River?

A: The best time to fish on the river varies depending on the season and fish species. Generally, spring and fall are good times to fish for many species, while summer may be better for catfish.

Q: Do I need a fishing license to fish on the Mississippi River?

A: Yes, a fishing license is required to fish on the Mississippi River. Licenses can be purchased from the state where you plan to fish or online.

Q: Are there any regulations I should be aware of when fishing on the Mississippi River?

A: Yes, there are regulations and restrictions on fishing in the Mississippi River, such as size and bag limits for certain species. It’s important to check with the state’s fish and wildlife agency for up-to-date regulations before you go fishing.