If a relaxing fishing trip is your idea of a fun vacation, it's good to know the applicable fishing laws for your area.  Many state parks offer on site fishing permits, but make sure you so your fishing homework before you drop your first line.
You can catch many different types of fish in the Midwest, including black crappie, walleye, white bass, catfish, and rainbow trout.  Each type of fish has a favorite fly.
With one bit of patience, a stroke of luck, and of course choosing the right fly, you can increase your odds of catching that perfect fish on your vacation.

Planning a Family Fishing Vacation in the Midwest

It is sometimes said that success in fishing is the result of equal parts patience and luck. Fishing is a budget friendly activity that is fun for the whole family. The thrill of the catch will captivate experienced anglers and enthusiastic beginners alike. With so many opportunities for fishing, ranging from quiet stocked fishing ponds to the rugged rivers and streams of the Ozark terrain, the Midwest will give you and your family the opportunity to get up close and personal with the local wildlife. This guide will explore resources to help you plan a family friendly fishing vacation in the Midwest.

For the best vacation experience, be sure to stay in nearby lodging.

How to Fish


  • Know the Law - This provides links to information about fishing license regulations in Missouri.

  • Get a License - The Missouri Department of Conservation issues fishing permits online.

  • Choose Your Bait - A detailed guide to selecting the right lure for species of fish found in the Great Lakes of the Midwest.

  • The Right Type of Fly - The Ozark Fly Fishers offer a helpful guide to 'The Twenty-five Best Flies for Missouri Parks and Streams.'

  • Tie Your Own Flies - This Missouri trout fishing club includes an extensive collection of videos on how to tie your own flies.

  • The Lure of Missouri Noodling — This type of fishing is a popular method but brushing up on laws is necessary before venturing out.

  • 'Sucker Gigging' - This University of Missouri Extension Service article describes the Ozark tradition of fishing for catfish at night.

  • 'Old Thyme Gigging' - This Rural Missouri article discusses the Ozark tradition of 'gigging'.


Fishing Safety


  • Boating Safety - The Illinios Department of Natural Resources gives tips for safe and responsible boating.

  • First Aid - The Missouri Trout Fisherman includes a link to first aid information for fisherman.

  • Wear A Life Jacket - The Missouri State Highway Patrol explains why you should always wear a life jacket when enjoying activities near the water.

  • Fishing Safety — Fishing is fun but requires certain safety measures be taken in order to keep all parties involved safe during the activity.

  • Safely Removing Fishing Hooks — Learn about how to remove fishing hooks from the fish you catch.

  • S.A.F.E. Angling — Discover how to fish and keep fish and ecosystems safe. Information on this is found here.

  • Safe Fishing Precautions — Discover how individuals of many ages can stay safe when fishing on this resource.

  • Learning How To Fish — The resource provided here instructs individuals on methods they can take to safely learn to fish.


Types of Fish


  • Black Crappie - A kid friendly article about the black crappie.

  • Walleye - This brief summary includes quick facts about the walleye and its habitat.

  • White Bass - This gives detailed information about the white bass and other fish species found throughout the Midwest.

  • Catfish - This helpful fact sheet about Missouri's catfish includes information about how to measure a catfish to determine whether or not it is legal to keep.

  • Ozark Fish - A pictorial guide to the fish of the Ozarks.

  • Missouri Mussels - A guide to Missouri's freshwater mussels.


Other Informative Sites about Fishing in the Midwest


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