Family Fun with Dad: Favorite Local Fishing Holes

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Wednesday Dad

Fishing for bass

Her first bass with Dad

Our new Wednesday series continues with Family Fun with Dad.  Anne, Joy, and I recognize that sometimes it’s good to get a man’s perspective, so we are partnering with local dads to give you a better all-around perspective. Of course, moms are more than welcome to participate in these activities, too!

Today, we are featuring my husband.

Dad: Chris Kordatzky from New Brighton

Kids: Four children ages 5, 7, 8 & 10

Favorite Family Hangout: If he had to choose somewhere in the Twin Cities, Chris is perfectly happy hanging out at home.  This is perfect for our family since Mom is constantly busy carting the kids around town.  When Dad is in charge of the schedule, we stay at home and enjoy each other.

Chris’s most favorite thing to do is go fishing whether in the summer or the winter.  Since his wife is not much of an angler (read–pretty much hates it), he has resigned himself to the fact that his fishing buddies are his kids.

The 10 year old is too much like her mom and would rather stay inside and read, but the 8 year old and 5 year old are enthusiastic fisherpeople.  The 7 year old likes it, too, but only for short stints.

Fishing on Lake Johanna

I’ve conquered fishing!

Chris’s 3 Favorite Local Fishing Holes (in the Northern Metro)

1. Lake Johanna (within Tony Schmidt Regional Park, 3500 Lake Johanna Boulevard, Arden Hills) –– clinches the number one spot.  It is close to our house and we can catch a lot of fish in one morning or afternoon.  Lake Johanna is where I caught my muskie.  I, Gianna, who doesn’t like to fish, caught a muskie.  Some people wait their whole lives to catch a muskie.  Every fisherperson I know is very proud of the fact that I caught a muskie including Chris. Boat launch: Access to this lake is in Tony Schmidt Park along County Road E-2

2. Snail Lake (4191 Snail Lake Boulevard, Shoreview/Vadnais Heights) — a fun lake to fish on when your wife is expecting a baby any moment. Boat launch: Access to this lake is located on the south shore of the lake in Snail Lake Regional Park. Turn off Hodson Road (Mn. 49) onto Snail Lake Road. Follow Snail Lake Road to Snail Lake Blvd., then turn left around the lake to the park.

3. Centerville Lake (within the city of Centerville) — a local favorite that’s worth the drive north. Boat launch: The boat launch is located within the Rice Creek Chain of Lakes Regional Park Reserve operated by Anoka County. There is a $5/vehicle fee to enter the park, but not to use the boat launch.

According to Chris, these lakes are fun to fish because they have many different types of fish and easily accessible boat launches.  Fishing from shore is allowed at these lakes, too.  In fact, kids may have a better time staying on the dock because of where fish like to hide.  See below for tips.

  • Daddy's fishing buddyHer first northern! How exciting
  • fishing from the dockOne cool fisherman
  • fishing from the dockHere fishy, fishy!
Stay Legal
  1. Life Jackets–anyone under the age of 10 MUST wear a life jacket in a boat that is traveling across the water.  The DNR suggests that any time a child is near water they are wearing a life jacket, but it’s not illegal to be in a boat tied to the dock without a life jacket.
  2. Fishing License–Anyone under 16 can fish without a license.  However, if your kids want to do more than catch and release, collecting their own stockpile of fish, you need to have purchases a family license.  Get more information here or simply go to Gander Mountain or Fleet Farm where they can explain everything a little more clearly.
Beginner’s Tips
  • Fishing poles –under age 5, little kiddy poles at Fleet Farm, 5-10 junior-sized pole about 4 feet long
  • Best time to fish–Better to fish in the morning, there is less recreational traffic.  Some lakes like Lake Johanna have wake restrictions and it’s best to go before 7:00 a.m.  Also, fishing is usually okay in the evening, but not all lakes have these restrictions
  • Where to look for fish–“Fish like to hang out in the shaded areas in lakes.”  You will most likely (but he won’t guarantee it) find good luck at the edge of lily pads, near trees in the water or on the shore and under docks.

Nicki from Minnemama Adventures just published a post about fishing as well.  Her guest writer, Corey, is a South Metro guy, so if you are looking for fishing in that area of town, you can check out her post for more great fishing locations and tips.

For more fun at home, check out our other items in this series.

Large Mouth Bass

Most handsome fisherman in the world


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About the author

Gianna Kordatzky

I am married to the craziest, most awesome man I know. We have four kids--Ranging in ages from 5-10. You can learn more about my life as a mother and wife at .

I love to throw parties and be with friends. I love to read my Bible and grow closer to God. I love to eat and exercise. I have learned to love coffee.
And I could really use a nap.

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