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Get Outta Town!: 48 hours in Walker

Summer is all about weekend getaways to Lakes Country. Here’s our guide to the perfect 48 hours in Walker

The city of Walker on Leech Lake is a charming, low-key weekend getaway. Leech Lake is the third largest lake in Minnesota and is known for simply the best Walleye and Muskie fishing in the Midwest. Walker’s picturesque downtown right down the street from the water has so many shopping and restaurant options, you never even have to leave a 5-mile radius to have a full Walker experience!

Friday

3 p.m.- Check in

Visit Leech Lake by staying right on the water at Chase on the Lake. Stay in one of their rooms with a balcony overlooking the water or opt for a whole condo on the property. Pet-friendly options are also available, so you won’t have to worry about leaving your furry friend at home. The resort has its own private sandy beach with chairs and loungers, a marina with rentable boats, piers for fishing and watching the sunset and even a few firepits for late night s’mores roasting.

4 p.m.- Take a dip

If you don’t feel like putting sunscreen on just yet, take a dip in their indoor pool and hot tub, complete with floor-to-ceiling windows looking to scenic greenery and a sauna.

5:30 p.m.- Dinner on the Patio

Chase on the Lake’s restaurant, The 502, has a full indoor bar and restaurant, but tonight, opt to dine on their wrap-around patio to dry off after your dip in the pool. This lakeside dining spot has a number of options, from hearty dishes to lighter fares and an impressive line up of specialty elixirs to wash it all down.

7 p.m.- Bowl the Night Away

Beneath the restaurant at Chase on the Lake is Chaser’s Alley, a two-lane bowling alley. Finish your first night in town with a few games of bowling, an activity many of us don’t get to enjoy much anymore these days. For an additional charge, cocktails and catering are available for in-the-lane service…how VIP!

Saturday

9 a.m. –Perk Up

Start the day right with coffee and breakfast at Walker Bay Coffee Co. This mom-and-pop style cafe has a small-town charm and big flavor. Order a hot cinnamon roll and one of their many specialty coffee drinks and settle in with the local newspaper for the ultimate start to your morning.

10 a.m. – Explore Downtown

Nothing beats the charm of a midwestern small-town downtown strip. Be sure to stop by Walker General Store for an old fashioned feel, Reeds Family Outdoor Outfitters for any outfitting you might have forgotten to pack and Northern Exposure for great gifts. Head over to Peculiar Painter on Front Street to peruse local art and pick up supplies to create your own works.

12 p.m. – Lunch at a Staple

While you’re downtown, grab lunch at a Walker staple, Benson’s Eating and Drinking Emporium. Located in the heart of downtown Walker, this is the perfect stopover for a mid-day food break. The menu is quite extensive, so be ready to spend some time perusing the options and deciding what to order.

2 p.m.- Come Sail Away

Book a two-hour guided sailing excursion with Sailing Daze. Hop on their classic sailing vessel and embrace a beloved lake tradition. Sailing Daze’s captain Bruce Johnson will take you on his vessel, “Knota Lotta,” through the waters of Walker Bay, expertly guiding you through the beautiful landscape. This is truly an unforgettable experience.

4:30 p.m.- Stretch Your Legs

After some hours on the water, stretch your sea legs with a hike or bike ride. Walker has many trails, including northern Minnesota’s oldest paved trail, Heartland Trail. On the trail, enjoy views of local wildlife and native flowers.

6:30 p.m. – Dinner at Lucky Moose Bar & Grill

End your Saturday night at Northern Lights Casino. But before you arrive at the casino, fill up on a satisfying dinner. On the route down to the casino is Lucky Moose Bar & Grill, a cabin-inspired eatery. The comfort foods on this menu feel like home in their cozy environment.

8 p.m. – Casino Night

Once filled up, head down the water to Northern Lights Casino for a night of testing your luck. This Casino-Hotel destination offers to the public: slot machines, blackjack tables and private poker rooms. For the kids, there is even an arcade room outside the casino’s main floor. If you plan your visit to Walker right, you might even catch one of the casino’s concerts, with lineups this summer featuring Ja Rule, R&B quartet 112 and Charley Pride.

Sunday

8 a.m. – Rise and Shine

Right in the parking lot of Chase on the Lake is Java Loon Coffee and Gifts. Start your morning by grabbing some coffee, a light breakfast and some snacks for later. While you’re there, grab a Chase on the Lake mug or a sweatshirt to take home as a souvenir from a weekend well-enjoyed.

9 a.m. – Go Fish

Spend your morning on a four-hour fishing trip with Leisure Outdoor Adventures. Highly rated Leisure Outdoor Adventures guides show you the local hot spots to help ensure a successful fishing trip. With their help, you’ll be able to snag some Minnesota fish to take back home with you, your guide will even fillet and package your catches for you.

12:30 p.m. – Quality BBQ

Before you hit the road, dine on one last meal in Walker. The Piggy BBQ Of Walker is one of the hottest BBQ joints in the area. The Piggy often sells out of their famous goods, so be sure to get in before the lunch rush. Freshness and high-quality products are of utmost importance to them, so they don’t mass produce their offerings in large amounts.

Plan Your Trip

Any weekend you choose is going to be a good time, but if you’re looking for a specific event going on in town, here are a few events to catch:

Walker Triathlon, June 9

Strive for your personal best and enjoy the beautiful and rejuvenating Leech Lake area at the Walker Triathlon (formerly Chase the Police Triathlon), hosted by the Walker Area Community Center (WACC). The natural setting of the Leech Lake/Northwoods area is perfect for a triathlon!

Moondance Jammin’ Country, June 20-22

The Moondance Jam’s country cousin is throwing its 13th year of southern-infused tunes. Headliners this year include Neal McCoy, Kane Brown and Brothers Osborne.

Moondance Jam, July 18-20

Lynyrd Skynyrd, Train, The Goo Goo Dolls and more! Minnesota’s largest rock-n-roll concert and Walker’s favorite weekend happens this year for its 28th year. Be one of the thousands who travel to Walker for this special weekend of music.

Alexandra Martin

Written by Alexandra Martin

Alexandra Martin is the editor of Fargo Monthly. She hails from Huntsville, Alabama, but graduated from Stephens College in Columbia, Missouri with a degree in Fashion Communications. When she's not in the office, she is busy taking care of her small zoo of pets, cooking up vegetables, or listening to true-crime podcasts.

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