Can you catch a walleye in the Twin Cities? You betcha

Fishing on White Bear Lake
Dominick Schmit-DeRosa (L), 12, and Noah Engen (R), 12, went fishing on White Bear Lake on August 22, 2015.
Caroline Yang for MPR News

Minnesota's fishing season is underway, and much of the attention turns to the hot spots for anglers in greater Minnesota, but a growing number of people are fishing on smaller lakes in the Twin Cities metro.

Tim Ohmann works as a fisheries expert with Fishing in the Neighborhood, an urban fishing program run by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. The program finds ways to make urban fishing more accessible.

"Most of our lakes, there aren't boat landings, so the anglers my program caters to are shore-based or people in kayaks and canoes," said Ohmann.

The lakes are often smaller and shallower, so Ohmann says the DNR typically stocks bluegills and some larger lakes do get walleye and muskies.

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Ohmann recommends White Bear Lake, Big Marine Lake, Waconia Lake and Forest Lake for anglers who are looking for walleye. For pan fish, he suggests that they head to Minnesota's smaller lakes.

Ohmann says the St. Croix river is relatively less busy at this time and is good for everything: walleye, bass, white bass, pike, and muskie fish.

At Lake Phalen in St. Paul, the DNR began stocking white bass last year.

"We were looking through our old survey history [and] we had found white bass in Lake Phalen off and on at different times from, going back to the '50s," Ohmann said.

About 6,000 white bass were put in the lake last June, and the DNR hopes to do the same this summer.

Ohmann says they're also trying to track how many people are fishing metro lakes.

"We used trail cameras at a couple of different lakes throughout the metro area and it seemed to work pretty good," said Ohmann. "We'll incorporate that into our surveying."