Best Walleye Fishing in Indiana: Top Spots and Tips

Indiana PIC

Indiana, known for its picturesque landscapes and sparkling freshwater bodies, offers a plethora of opportunities for the passionate angler. One of the most popular game fish that lures anglers to Indiana’s serene waters is the walleye. This majestic fish is not only pursued for its active fighting ability but also for its delicious, flaky meat which makes it a favorite among fishing enthusiasts.

The Hoosier State is home to numerous lakes, rivers, and reservoirs that provide ideal habitats for walleye to thrive. As a result, countless anglers flock to Indiana year-round to cast their lines and experience the thrill of reeling in this prized game fish. Whether you’re an experienced angler looking to bag a trophy-sized walleye or a beginner seeking to explore the joy of walleye fishing, Indiana has what you need to ensure a memorable and rewarding fishing experience.

Key Takeaways

  • Indiana offers a wide range of popular fishing spots for walleye enthusiasts
  • Walleye fishing techniques and bait may vary seasonally to maximize success
  • Conservation efforts and fishing regulations help maintain a thriving walleye population in Indiana’s freshwaters

Understanding Walleye Fishing in Indiana

Hey there, friend! So, you’re interested in walleye fishing in Indiana? You’ve come to the right place. In this section, we will discuss some of the best locations, techniques, and tips for catching walleye in the Hoosier State.

Indiana offers a variety of lakes and rivers where you can find an abundance of walleye. Some popular spots include Bass Lake, Lake Maxinkuckee, and the St. Joseph River. It’s essential to know the locations that have a healthy walleye population so you can increase your chances of catching this delicious fish.

Now that you have an idea of where to find walleye in Indiana, let’s talk about some techniques to help you catch them. Walleye can be elusive and prefer deeper waters, so using techniques like jigging and trolling can be very effective. Since walleye tend to be more active during dusk and dawn, you might want to plan your fishing trips around these times.

Surprisingly, weather can also play a role in walleye fishing success. According to the Indiana Department of Natural Resources, the best time to fish for walleye in winter is mid to late afternoon. Fishing before a cold front can be productive, and if a warm front happens to occur, it’s another great opportunity to catch walleye.

Here are some quick tips to increase your walleye fishing success in Indiana:

  • Use live bait: Walleye are known for their keen sense of smell, so using minnows, nightcrawlers, or leeches can help attract these fish.
  • Choose the right lure: Depending on the time of year and the conditions, using crankbaits, jigs, or spinners can be very effective in catching walleye.
  • Pay attention to water temperature: Walleye are sensitive to temperature changes, and they typically prefer water temperatures between 40 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit.

By following these tips and seeking out prime walleye fishing locations, you’ll be well on your way to reeling in some prized catches. Don’t forget to enjoy the experience and take in the beautiful Indiana scenery while you’re out on the water. Happy fishing!

Top 10 Best Walleye Fishing Lakes in Indiana

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Best Walleye Fishing in Indiana: Top Spots and Tips 5

Indiana is home to some fantastic walleye fishing, and in this section, we’ll explore the top 10 lakes where you can reel in this tasty and challenging species. So grab your fishing gear and let’s dive into the best spots in the Hoosier state.

Sylvan Lake

Located in Noble County, Sylvan Lake is known for its picturesque scenery and an abundance of walleye. The lake offers great fishing opportunities for anglers of all skill levels, and with ample shoreline access, you’re sure to find a perfect spot to cast your line.

Winona Lake

Also in Kosciusko County, Winona Lake is another excellent choice for walleye fishing. Known for its clear waters, the lake provides a pristine setting for those hoping to land a trophy-sized catch.

Brookville Lake

Situated in Franklin and Union counties, Brookville Lake is a popular destination for anglers in Indiana. The lake’s diverse habitat makes it an ideal fishing spot, and its walleye population is well-stocked thanks to regular replenishments by local authorities.

Lake Maxinkuckee

As the second-largest natural lake in Indiana, Lake Maxinkuckee offers ample space for walleye fishing. Located in Marshall County, anglers can expect to find a healthy population of walleye here, making it a top choice for those seeking a successful fishing trip.

Monroe Lake

Monroe Lake, with its expansive waters, provides a fantastic walleye fishing experience. Situated in southern Indiana, expect to find ample structure and cover for walleye to thrive, making it a great spot for both novice and experienced anglers.

Patoka Lake

Another popular lake in southern Indiana, Patoka Lake offers 26,000 acres of fishing heaven. Known for its large walleye population, you can also enjoy picturesque views while fishing in this fantastic location.

Bass Lake

Situated in Starke County, Bass Lake is no stranger to walleye fishing. This shallow glacial lake provides an ideal environment for walleye to thrive, making it a top choice for anglers throughout the year.

Lake Freeman

Found in White and Carroll counties, Lake Freeman is a reservoir with a reputation for excellent walleye fishing. With a mix of easy shore access, boat ramps, and unique underwater structures, you’ll surely have a fantastic fishing experience here.

Crooked Lake

Located in Steuben County, Crooked Lake is a beautiful spot to fish for walleye. With three basins to explore, anglers have plenty of opportunity for finding the perfect fishing hole in this scenic area.

Natural Lake

Rounding out our list of top 10 walleye fishing lakes in Indiana is Natural Lake, also located in Steuben County. Enjoy the peaceful surroundings while searching for top-notch walleye in this lesser-known gem.

With such fantastic options across the state, your next walleye fishing adventure in Indiana is sure to be a success. Whether you’re a seasoned angler or a beginner, these lakes offer exciting opportunities to hone your skills and enjoy the beauty of the great outdoors.

Walleye Fishing Techniques and Bait Suggestions

When it comes to walleye fishing, choosing the right bait can make a world of difference in your success. Live bait is often the most effective option, with minnows, leeches, and nightcrawlers being popular choices. When rigging these, you can use a slip sinker rig, a jighead, or even a spinner rig to attract the walleye’s attention.

Trolling with crankbaits is also an excellent technique for covering more water and targeting walleye actively feeding in deeper areas. Choose crankbaits that imitate the natural prey of walleye, such as shad or perch, and experiment with different colors and diving depths to find what works best in your fishing spot.

Now, don’t forget to pay attention to the water temperature and time of day. Walleye are more active during low-light conditions, so early morning and late evening are the prime times to fish. They also tend to move closer to shore as the water temperature rises, making them easier to target from the bank.

As for lures, you can also try casting with jigs or swimbaits to mimic the walleye’s prey. Use slow retrieve with occasional pauses or quick jerks to entice the fish to strike. Bright colors like fluorescent orange or chartreuse can be especially appealing to walleye when the water is murky.

Remember to keep it friendly and patient! Walleye can be finicky, so don’t get discouraged if they aren’t biting right away. Experiment with different baits, techniques, and locations to find what works best for you. And most importantly, enjoy the relaxing experience of spending time outdoors while honing your walleye fishing skills. Good luck!

Seasonal Insights for Walleye Fishing

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Best Walleye Fishing in Indiana: Top Spots and Tips 6

As you prepare for a walleye fishing adventure in Indiana, it’s essential to consider the seasonal patterns to improve your chances of success. In this section, we’ll share a few tips and tricks to help you make the most of your fishing experience during various times of the year.

Springtime in Northern Indiana is a prime time for walleye fishing. As the ice melts and the temperatures begin to rise, walleye start making their way to shallower waters for spawning. This makes them more accessible and easier to catch. Focus on areas with rocky or gravelly bottoms, as these are the preferred spots for walleye to lay their eggs. Don’t be surprised to find them in water as shallow as 4 feet!

Ice fishing for walleye in Indiana can also be a fun and rewarding experience. During the colder months, these fish tend to move deeper, so it’s essential to target deeper pockets and structures within the water. Popular techniques for ice fishing walleye include using jigging spoons, jigging raps, or live bait on tip-ups. Remember to dress warmly and always prioritize safety when venturing out onto the ice.

Another tip worth considering is that walleye are known to be more active during the hours between sunset and sunrise. By fishing during these low-light conditions, you will improve your chances of catching them near the surface. Make sure to use lures and tactics that work well in low light, such as glow-in-the-dark lures and slow retrieves.

Finally, be prepared to adapt your techniques throughout the year. Walleye behavior changes as the seasons progress, so keeping an open mind and being ready to switch up your strategies will help you stay ahead of the game.

Happy walleye fishing, and don’t forget to share your successes with fellow anglers!

Conserving and Enhancing Walleye Stocks

Indiana Walleye Stocking Program

To help conserve and grow the walleye population in Indiana, the Indiana Department of Natural Resources (DNR) runs a walleye stocking program. This initiative involves collecting walleye eggs from Brookville and raising both walleye fry and fingerlings for later release into the state’s lakes and rivers. With 17 million walleye fry produced annually, Indiana aims to boost the walleye fisheries, providing you with better fishing opportunities.

One key aspect of the stocking program is the release of larger walleye fingerlings. These bigger fingerlings have a higher survival rate compared to their smaller counterparts, contributing to a healthier walleye population.

Role of Indiana DNR

The Indiana DNR is responsible for managing the state’s fishery resources, including the conservation of its walleye stocks. They work closely with Indiana fisheries biologists to study the current walleye populations and determine the best strategies for supporting their growth.

The state record walleye, caught in 2018, weighed 14.25 pounds and measured 30 inches. The Indiana DNR continues to enhance stocking programs and monitor the impact on walleye populations to increase the chances of catching quality walleye like this one.

Walleye Fishery Conservation Initiatives

To further support walleye conservation, some additional initiatives have been taken:

  • Stock monitoring: The DNR regularly evaluates the effectiveness of walleye stocking efforts. They assess the health and growth of stocked fish and track their movements to better understand their impact on the ecosystem.
  • Habitat improvement: Walleye depend on healthy habitats to thrive. The DNR is dedicated to improving water quality and maintaining suitable spawning grounds for walleye, supporting their reproduction and overall well-being.
  • Education and outreach: The DNR works closely with anglers and the general public to raise awarenes of the importance of walleye conservation. By offering education programs and sharing updates on walleye fisheries, they aim to create a more informed and eco-conscious fishing community.

As a walleye fishing enthusiast, you can support these initiatives by following fishing regulations and responsible fishing practices. This ensures that Indiana’s walleye population will continue to grow and provide memorable fishing experiences for you and future generations.

Indiana’s Fishery Beyond Walleyes

Indiana offers a wide variety of fish to catch in its lakes and rivers, and although walleye is a popular choice, there are plenty of other species to target. In this section, we’ll explore some of the best options for anglers looking to try their hand at bass, crappie, trout, and catfish fishing in Indiana.

Bass Fishing

When it comes to bass fishing, Indiana is known for its healthy populations of largemouth bass and white bass. You can find these species in many lakes and rivers throughout the state. Some of the top spots for bass fishing include Monroe Reservoir for largemouth bass and Lake Michigan for smallmouth bass. Remember to use the right equipment and techniques, and bass fishing in Indiana can be a rewarding experience.

Crappie Fishing

For those who enjoy crappie fishing, Indiana has plenty to offer. With numerous lakes and reservoirs teeming with both black and white crappie, you’ll have no trouble finding a good spot to cast your line. Some popular crappie fishing locations in Indiana include Lake Monroe, Patoka Lake, and Glenn Flint Lake. Early spring and fall are the best times to fish for crappie, as they move to shallower water to spawn and feed.

Trout Fishing

Trout fishing in Indiana is prevalent in both stocked and native trout populations. The state’s clear waterways and cold streams make it an ideal habitat for trout species, including brown and rainbow trout. Some great spots for trout fishing in Indiana include the Brookville Tailwaters and White River in central Indiana. Many of the state’s designated trout streams are stocked annually, ensuring that anglers have ample opportunities to catch these beautiful fish.

Catfish Fishing

Finally, let’s talk about catfish fishing in Indiana. Home to both channel and flathead catfish, you’ll find these fish lurking in many of the state’s rivers and reservoirs. Patoka Lake is a particularly popular spot for channel catfish, with many reports of large catches made throughout the year. Don’t forget to use the proper catfish bait and rigging, and you might find yourself reeling in a monster!

So whether you’re after bass, crappie, trout, or catfish, Indiana’s fishery has something for everyone. Grab your gear, hit the water, and enjoy all that Indiana’s fishing scene has to offer.

Fishing Regulations in Indiana

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Fishing in Indiana can be a fun and rewarding experience, but before you cast your line, it’s essential to be familiar with the state’s fishing regulations. These rules are in place to ensure the sustainability of fish populations and maintain a healthy ecosystem.

First and foremost, it’s crucial that you have a valid fishing license. If you’re new to fishing, purchasing a license is easy and fees are quite reasonable. Remember, there are exemptions available. So, be sure to verify your eligibility beforehand.

In Indiana, you need to follow size and bag limits to avoid any legal implications. The bag and possession limits vary depending on the fish species you’re targeting. For instance, walleye, your daily bag limit is six, and the possession limit is double that amount. Be aware that when it comes to bag limits, they apply to a single calendar day and not a 24-hour period.

Apart from bag limits, you should adhere to specific fishing methods outlined in the Indiana Fishing Regulations. These methods include the types of tackle, baits, and other equipment you can use, as well as the locations where each is allowed.

When you’re ready to fish for walleye in Indiana, there are a variety of fantastic spots to check out. Some popular lakes and rivers include Pretty Lake, St. Joseph River, and Wolf Lake, among others. Be sure to review the specific regulations for the location you’re fishing, as some areas may have additional restrictions or seasonal closures to protect sensitive habitats.

Finally, be a responsible angler and practice catch and release when appropriate. By following the Indiana fishing regulations, you’ll not only ensure a successful and fun outing but also help preserve the fishing experience for generations to come. Enjoy your time on the water, and good luck catching those delicious walleyes!


In Indiana, you’ve got several fantastic options when it comes to walleye fishing. This beautiful state offers a variety of lakes, rivers, and reservoirs where you can find this prized game fish.

One popular destination to consider is Wolf Lake, which has seen significant stocking efforts from Perch America, resulting in an excellent walleye fishing opportunity. For those who enjoy river fishing, consider the St. Joseph River, Ohio River, Kankakee River, or the Tippecanoe. Each of these rivers offer unique settings and potential for catching walleye.

As you plan your walleye fishing adventures, remember to use techniques and gear specific to walleye angling. They can be a challenging species to target, but the rewards are worth the effort. Don’t be discouraged if you don’t catch one right away; patience and persistence are key when it comes to walleye fishing.

Engage with fellow anglers and locals who may offer valuable insights on the best spots and techniques to use in the area. Joining online fishing communities or participating in local tournaments can be a great way to learn and share experiences.

So, grab your fishing gear and head to Indiana’s wonderful walleye fishing locations. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or a beginner, the excitement of reeling in one of these magnificent fish is an experience you won’t want to miss. Happy fishing!

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the top spots for walleye fishing in Indiana?

Some of the best places for walleye fishing in Indiana include the St. Joseph River, Ohio River, Kankakee River, and the Tippecanoe River. In fact, the Indiana state record walleye is shared by the Tippecanoe and Kankakee Rivers at 14 pounds, 4 ounces.

Which Indiana lakes are known for their walleye population?

There are several lakes in Indiana known for their walleye population, such as Bass Lake, Brookville Lake, Cagles Mill Lake, Cecil M. Harden Lake, and Clear Lake. You can also find walleye in lakes like Lake Freeman, Lake Maxinkuckee, and Lake Wawasee.

When is the prime season for walleye fishing in Indiana?

Walleye fishing in Indiana can be productive throughout the year, but the best opportunities are often during late winter and early spring when walleye congregate in shallow areas for spawning. Apart from this period, you can still have good shallow water walleye fishing between sunset and sunrise, as suggested by

Are there any walleye fishing opportunities near Bass Lake?

Yes, Bass Lake, located in Starke County, Indiana, offers walleye fishing opportunities. According to the Indiana DNR, the lake is one of the Indiana waters stocked with walleye annually.

How does walleye fishing in Indiana compare to Michigan?

While both Indiana and Michigan offer excellent walleye fishing opportunities, Michigan is generally more famous for its walleye hotspots and larger populations. However, Indiana still boasts a great variety of lakes and rivers, providing anglers with the chance to catch good-sized walleye.

What tips can you share for catching walleye in Brookville Lake?

To increase your chances of catching walleye in Brookville Lake, consider targeting areas with structure, such as drop-offs, points, and submerged vegetation. Try using live bait like minnows, leeches, or nightcrawlers, as well as jigs, crankbaits, and spinner rigs. The key is to experiment with different techniques and depths until you locate the fish. Don’t forget to check the Indiana DNR website for additional fishing tips and location-specific information.


Hi, I’m Kurt and I’m the author of walleyemania. I’ve been fishing for Walleye since I was a kid and I love sharing my tips, tricks, and stories with other anglers. Whether you’re a beginner or a pro, you’ll find something useful and entertaining on my site. I cover everything from the best gear, baits, and techniques to the best spots, seasons, and recipes for Walleye fishing. Join me on my journey to catch more and bigger Walleye!

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