We live in a world of numbers, and when it comes to fishing, it's no different. ¶ We fish with 8-pound test line, measure the length of fish to determine if we can keep them and count dollars for licenses, minnows and jigs. ¶ We measure water temperature, check water depth and plug in GPS coordinates for favorite fishing holes. And, of course, we count fish. Especially if I catch more than you. ¶ Saturday, 500,000 people — one-third of the state's 1.5 million anglers — are expected to wet a line on the fishing opener. (What will those other 1 million anglers be doing Saturday?) ¶ Here are some fishing-related numbers you can count on:


Where Minnesota ranks nationally in fishing licenses per capita.


Minimum number of pores on underside of a muskie's jaw. A northern has five or fewer.

4.6 million

Pounds of walleyes anglers harvest yearly.


Cost to rent a houseboat for a week at Ebel's Voyageur Houseboats in Voyageurs National Park.

1 to 2

Minutes it takes guide Tom Neustrom of Grand Rapids to clean a typical walleye.

$400: Typical cost for a guide for eight hours of fishing, usually including bait, equipment and fish cleaning. The fishing stories and advice are free.

4: Minnesota counties with no natural lakes (Mower, Olmsted, Pipestone, Rock).

94 pounds, 4 ounces: Weight of heaviest fish caught by an angler in Minnesota record books, a lake sturgeon caught in the Kettle River in 1994.

14: Average number, in inches, of a typical harvested walleye.

17 pounds, 8 ounces: The state walleye record from 1979 that you'll be trying to beat this year. Good luck with that.

67: Stocked urban fishing ponds in the seven-county Twin Cities region under the Fishing in the Neighborhood (FiN) program.

400: Number of fishing piers, platforms and developed shore fishing areas on public lands around the state.

10: Most common lake names: Mud, Long, Rice, Bass, Round, Horseshoe, Twin, Island, Johnson and Spring.

244: Distance from Minneapolis to Ely.

6 a.m.: Time Frankie's Live Bait in Chisago City opens on weekends.

240 feet: Maximum depth of state's deepest inland natural lake, Lake Saganaga.

18 feet: Maximum depth of Upper Red Lake.

68: Number of years the Governor's Fishing Opener event has been held. This year the governor, his guests and media will be at Lake Vermilion.

288,800: Number of acres of Upper and Lower Red Lake, the largest lake entirely within Minnesota's borders.

132,516: Number of acres of state's second largest lake, Lake Mille Lacs.

250 million: Average number of walleye fry stocked in Minnesota lakes yearly.

11,842: Number of Minnesota lakes, 10 acres or larger.

290: Miles of shoreline of Lake Vermilion — longest in the state.

680: Number of miles the Mississippi River flows through Minnesota.

$1,500: Average annual expenditure per angler.

162: Number of fish species in Minnesota.

35,400: Number of Minnesota jobs supported by fishing.

32: Percentage of state residents who fish.

6: Ranking of Minnesota among states with the highest number of anglers.