Jarrad and Jordan Fluekiger are the third and fourth generations of their family to make their living on the Mississippi River. You name -- shape it, work it, dredge it, hunt it, fish it -- the Fluekigers will do it.
The border between Minnesota and Wisconsin here was formed by a combination of molten lava and melting glaciers over the past billion years. The St. Croix River Valley's hugely popular public access site features hikes along the bluffs and down to the river, and ways to see these stunning rock cliffs from water level.
Neither Lake Ida or Lake Charley northwest of Alexandria are stocked with muskies by the Minnesota DNR, but a connection to Lake Miltona means some of the big fish make their way in. Park Rapids native Tayden George has quite a fish story to tell after landing a muskie near 50 inches long while fishing the channel that connects the two lakes.
Founded more than a century ago and expended during the Great Depression, this gem in western Minnesota features hiking, biking, boating, beaching and abundant wildlife, along with a quartet of camping options.