Wisconsin vs. Minnesota: Lakes

Story by Breann Schossow and Ashley Krautkramer


Rumor has it that Wisconsin has more lakes than Minnesota. After extensive fact checking, I was disappointed to learn that this is indeed true – by several thousand or so. But, there’s a reason Minnesota is the land of lakes, and Wisconsin is, well, not.

First off, the title itself rolls of the tongue better when paired with Minnesota – and, our license plates that brag about are lakes are prettier.

Second, all but four of the counties in Minnesota have at least one natural lake – and those that don’t make their own. So, it’s not for lack of trying that the state doesn’t have more lakes. And, as so often is in life, bigger is not always better. Quality is what is truly desired.

So, Wisconsin, you may have more water – but, tourism deems that Minnesota’s is better. -BS


If Minnesota is the “Land of 10,000 Lakes” then Wisconsin is the “Land of more lakes than Minnesota.”

Wisconsin boasts over 15,000 lakes within the state and an estimated 1017 miles of shore along the Great Lakes. Minnesota, on the other hand, can only tout exposure to one of the Great Lakes and their trademark 10,000 lakes within the state.

Aside from the number of lakes, there is a huge disparity between the amount of water in general in each state. Wisconsin is over 17% water by area, while Minnesota is only about 8%. Wisconsin’s lakes win out beneath the surface, too. Wisconsin’s deepest lake is almost 30 feet deeper than Minnesota’s.

Whether your activity of choice is swimming, boating or fishing, there are over 5,000 more lakes to choose from in Wisconsin. -AK