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Bald eagles gracefully swoop over elegant sandbars and around the large, peaceful island situated directly in the middle of Blackduck Lake. Located just west of the city of Blackduck, Blackduck Lake is just one of dozens of stunning Minnesota lakes located in Beltrami County. Smooth shorelines characterize this immaculate body of water, creating ideal conditions for what the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) considers one of the most prized and well-liked fishing lakes in the Bemidji Fisheries Management area.
Walleye is the most prevalent fish species in Blackduck Lake, followed by perch and black crappie. Bluegill average 7.4 inches by age four, with record specimens measuring 10 inches or more. Freshwater drum, a genuine rarity among Minnesota lakes, is plentiful here; an average drum weighs in at about six pounds. Additionally, largemouth bass, pike and brown bullhead can be found in smaller numbers. Pumpkinseed sunfish, rock bass, and white sucker are also present. Hunters can pursue deer, grouse, goose and duck.
Boating, waterskiing and tubing are other enjoyable pastimes at Blackduck Lake. During the winter, try snowmobiling the Blue Ox ATV Trail all the way down to Leech Lake. The path plunges along an abandoned railroad track, through swampy black spruce forests and through four major towns: International Falls, Little Fork, Big Falls and Northome. Ice fishing here is also superb; Blackduck Lake is outranked in winter fish house counts only by its neighbor, Lake Bemidji. Snow skiing, snowboarding and horse drawn sleigh-riding are other awesome winter activities.
To take a break from Blackduck Lake's water sports, look no farther than the 1.6 million-acre Chippewa National Forest. Superb bird and wildlife watching opportunities yield common bald eagle, hawk, osprey, and weasel sightings. These woodlands are home to some of Minnesota's rare primary forests (2% of the state's trees that have never been logged), with some ancient samples thought to be 350 years old. Birch, fir and maple trees are the most common species found throughout the park's numerous hiking trails.
The Paul Bunyan Trail is one of the most popular hiking trails near Blackduck Lake. This paved, 120-mile stretch of track runs from Bemidji State Park all the way to Crow Wing State Park. The Dakota and Ojibwe tribes originally inhabited these lands - from prehistoric times up until the arrival of European settlers - as evidenced by 13 primitive sites that have been identified as of today. Another popular trailhead can be found at the Chippewa National Forest; "The Lost Forty" trail winds through a 144-acre plot of land that goes by the same name.
Just north of Blackduck Lake lie the Upper and Lower Red Lakes. Game fish like northern pike, perch and white fish can be found along these long, sandy shorelines. Interestingly, Upper Red Lake's 108,000 acres are not all considered to be a part of the state of Minnesota - 56% is owned by the Red Lake Band of Chippewa Indians.
Lakeside real estate properties and vacation rentals at Blackduck Lake are available and in great demand. Lake amenities include bait and tackle shops, campsites, cabins, campfire bowls and a volleyball court.
From fishing to snowmobiling, year-round activities abound at Blackduck Lake. Come enjoy exciting outdoor excursions perfect for getting in (or staying in) shape - or simply spend some time soaking up the sun along Blackduck Lake's sandy banks.
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