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Guide To Overnight Ice Fishing In Minnesota

By Amy C. Rea

If the concept of "ice fishing" makes you shiver and think dreadful thoughts related to wind chill and hypothermia, think again. Many of Minnesota's all-season resorts have upped the luxury quotient when it comes to ice fishing. Sure, you can stay in a cabin and drive to your favorite fishing spot, but why bother, when you can rent an overnight house right on the lake?

The following are just a few of the resorts, primarily along the northern border and around Lake Mille Lacs, that offer overnight ice fishing houses with amenities like propane heaters, stoves, and porta-potties. Standard sleeper houses house 4 or 6 people. Many have additional options, including TV and video game systems. Not all include the all-important rattle reel, so be sure to ask when making a reservation. Note: most of these require at least a two-night minimum on weekends.

Ice Fishing House
(credit: TIMO GANS/AFP/Getty Images)

Rates Start at $125 per night

Hunter Winfield's Resort is on Lake Mille Lacs and offers icehouses with flat screen TVs, some even with Direct TV, stoves and bathrooms. If you prefer your ice fishing to be bare bones, they do have basic huts available, but otherwise you can rent a "castle" large enough to sleep six. You can get a rental rate discount if you reserve the icehouse with a landlubber's cabin.

Ice Fishing
(credit: CBS)

Rates start at $240 per weekend

KJ's Ice Fishing & Island View Rentals can set you up with a sleeper house complete with gas and electric, lights, carpeted floors and even a couple of 10-person "bar houses," complete with bar stools.

Minnesota Lake Boasts World's Biggest Ice Fishing Competition
(credit: Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Rates start at $175 during weekends
Half off weekdays

Garrison Sports on Lake Mille Lacs in Garrison has basic sleepers that can hold 6 people, carpeted and paneled, with drive-up lake locations. Additional holes outside the sleeper can be drilled with advance notice.

Minnesota Lake Boasts World's Biggest Ice Fishing Competition
(credit: Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Rates: $140 - $275

Appeldoorn's Sunset Bay Resort on Lake Mille Lacs in Isle has an elaborate group of sleeper houses, holding anywhere from 4-12 people. Extras available for rent include microwaves, TV/DVD combos, and underwater cameras.

Rocky Reef Resort
(credit: Rocky Reef Resort)

Rates: $150 - $300

Rocky Reef Resort on Lake Mille Lacs has houses to accommodate 3-6 people, plus one marketed as "couples only." Well, at least you'll have each other to keep warm.

Rates start at $75 per person

Wheeler's Point Resort on Lake of the Woods offers all the basics -- as well as – a Floatvan Transport to and from your icehouse.

Border View Lodge
(credit: Border View Lodge)

Rates Vary: See web for details

Border View Lodge in Baudette has sleepers with a two-burner cooktop and indoor facilities.

Rates Vary: See web for details

Zippel Bay Resort on Lake of the Woods in Williams offers the standard 4- and 6-person sleeper houses, but also has 2-person houses available. Bonus: the Ice Igloo, an on-lake bar for avid fisher people.

Rates Vary: See web for details

The aptly named Walleye Retreat on Lake of the Woods in Baudette offers 4-person houses with tables and chairs, stove, and bathroom.

Amy C. Rea lives with her family in the Twin Cities. She's the author of Backroads & Byways of Minnesota and Minnesota, Land of 10,000 Lakes: an Explorer's Guide. She can also be found chatting about Minnesota travel topics at

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