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Top 5 US National Parks for Fishing Adventures

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The United States is blessed with plenty of places to enjoy outdoor activities. From the ski mountains and lakes to the backcountry trails and canyons. But for sure, the best places in the country for the outdoors are in the National Parks.


There are plenty of incredible National Parks in The US, and all of them offer something a little bit different.

Because we've already covered the 20 Best US National Parks, in this post, I'm going to do something a little bit different.

Fishing is one of the most popular outdoor activities in US and for good reason. The country's waters are packed full of a beautiful rainbow, bass, salmon, and pike.

I'm a fly fisherman myself and have been fishing since my dad bought me my first good fly fishing rod at age 8. As a Canadian, it's hard for me to admit, but there are arguably more great fishing spots in the US than in my homeland neighbor to the north.

When you consider the breathtaking scenery in some of the National Parks on this list, you'll quickly see why as an angler, you really can't miss fishing in the US National Parks.

Here are 3 of the best National Parks for fishing in the US:

Fishing in Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone National Park, Montana

Total Area: 3,471 mi²

The fly fishing in Montana is easily some of the best in the country thanks to a healthy spattering of dazzling lakes and slow-moving rivers. Yellowstone National Park is probably the best spot in the state for casting a line.

As an avid outdoorsman myself, I love that you can combine hiking with fishing in Yellowstone National Park. The Gallatin River is an angler's favorite and there are lots of trails along the shore.

If you stay at the Gallatin River Boutique Lodge, you'll have access to plenty of hiking trails and there are lots of other outdoor activities if you have non-fishers in your party.

Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming

Total Area: 480 mi²

Yet another excellent state for fly fishing Wyoming has a few different national parks you could choose from, but Grand Teton is the granddaddy of them all.

Whether you're fly fishing or spin casting, Jackson Lake is probably your best bet for catching fish in the park while having the beautiful backdrop of the Teton Mountain Range in the distance.

This lake is best fished by boat and there are boat rentals available all around the lake. If you're coming here during the warmer months, non-fishing family and friends can still join you for a couple of hours on the water because the views themselves are worth the time.

Other non-fishing activities include hiking trails, mountain biking trails, and kayak tours.

Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado

Total Area: 414.78 mi²


Rocky Mountain National Park should be on anybody's Colorado Itinerary. Whether you're into fishing or not, there is just so much to do in this 414 sq mi outdoor paradise.

As far as fly fishing in Colorado goes, this is easily one of the best spots, with the Colorado River being the top choice for fly anglers.

For people who aren't into fishing, outdoor opportunities are pretty much endless in RMNP.

Just driving around the park is a highlight. Try to go 1 mile without getting out of your car to take photos. You'll likely pass by wildlife and some of the most stunning viewpoints you've ever seen.

When you do leave the vehicle, consider hitting up one of the many hiking trails. There are over 355 miles of hiking trails throughout the park.

If you're planning a hiking trip, make sure you pack well so that you have everything you need for the fast-changing environment in the higher altitude portions of the park.

If you don't want to venture out on your own, there are also some well-organized Ranger-led programs that are great for the whole family. Have a qualified ranger walk you around the park and teach you about the different flora and fauna found there.

Arches National Park, Utah

Total Area: 119.8 mi²

© Josh Benderarches-national-park-0682.jpg
Delicate Arch in Arches National Park at sunset

One of Utah's premier outdoor destinations, Arches National Park is a treasure of the state with the brilliant blue Panguitch Lake being a favorite amongst fishermen and outdoor lovers.

This is another park where there's a lot more to do than just fishing. When you're not casting a line, you can go whitewater rafting, hiking, mountain bike riding, dirtbike riding, horseback riding, and more.

This park is packed full of adventure.

Voyageurs National Park, Minnesota

Total Area: 340.9 mi²

Last but not least, if you're a person who loves fishing you won't want to miss Voyageurs National Park in Minnesota.

I personally prefer catch and release fly fishing, but Voyageurs is home to Walleye, which are arguably the best tasting freshwater fish in the world. Thanks to the crystal clear pristine water in the park, they taste even better when they're from here.

The National Park itself is over 40% water and is basically a massive labyrinth of intersecting waterways stretching along the border with Canada.

Don't miss Rainy, Sand Point, and Kabetogama lakes if you're fishing. And when you're not on the water, you can head to glacier-carved bays, remote hiking trails, and deserted islands.


With domestic travel in the US now becoming more popular than ever, and with outdoor adventures being at the top of most peoples' travel bucket list, these parks will give any angler and his or her family a healthy dose of fresh air and adventure.

If I had to choose just one state to visit for fishing, it would probably be Montana, because aside from having 3 excellent national parks for fishing, there are also plenty of rivers, lakes and small streams to explore with a fishing rod.

About the author


Nick is an avid angler and traveler who has been on the road since 2008, seeking the outdoors and great fishing spots everywhere he goes. He started his own blog about fly fishing where he shares his knowledge of the sport and favorite destinations for anglers around the world.

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