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Vermilion Dam Lodge
on Minnesota’s Beautiful Lake Vermilion
Box 1105, Cook, MN 55723
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Cabin Testimonies

Want to share your experience on the Vermilion Dam Lodge website?
Email us with your stories and photos and we'll get them online!

IronOreDog on walleyecentral.com
September 26, 2012

I was at the school as well. I've fished walleye all of my life. I have fished all over Minnesota and Western Ontario. With at least 40 years of "intelligent" experience under my belt, I thought I knew alot. Come to find out there's a whole lot more to learn. PLUS learning WHY I've done the things I do walleye fishing that my Dad passed down to me- why these things work sometimes and sometimes don't. Being able to pick Doc and Johnnie's brains and SHARED information from classmates creates a learning experience that will greatly improve your time spent on the water. One simple tip the first day changed the way I've been using my sonar since they were invented! Not that I was wrong; It was that I was only scratching the surface of HOW to use it. If you've ever watched one of Doc's, Johnnie's or other professional fisherman's instructional videos- you've probably wanted to run right to the lake to try the tips in the show. With the Walleye school, the lake is right there!
Vermilion Dam Lodge is outstanding! Accomodations are way too comfortable, the food is too good and the staff is too attentive for the price! Check out the website at www.vdl.com for photos of the area. Don't forget a camera! You'll want pictures of the lake and lodge just to hang on the wall!
Another thing: My partner and I stayed in the Aerie- a 15-person lodge in itself with 2 fireplaces, 2 whirlpools, washer-dryer, 3 bathrooms, 2 fridges and fabulous views. What I didn't count on was making so many NEW friends! People that fish have more than that in common; like beliefs that instantly made the whole group in the cabin "classmates" that helped each other.
Make Plans NOW for next year! HEY and don't forget your wife- this is not a male-only event! There were at least a couple of gals that had a great time AND asked some of the BEST questions during class sessions! All of the "stuff" given away was truly terrific as well.

Cory E. on walleyecentral.com
September 26, 2012

I attended along with about 32 others, It was a great experience, Learned alot. The instructors Doc Samson, Johnie Candle and Kurt Headquist were all superb. They shared their knowledge along with demostrating various techniques on the water {your option]. You got around $150 plus in tackle and other fishing gear from their sponsors and door prizes. The facility Vermillion Dam Lodge is top notch the service from Ed and Marty and staff was superb!!! The food fantastic..If you really want to know how the pros fish lakes you will learn that there. Is it worth the $630 I say yes. And the other 13 or so anglers I talked with all felt the same.

September 14, 2012

First, your Labor Day Holiday weekend special was a great value and would love to take advantage of it again in the future if you maintain it. What a great package. It really allowed us to have an enjoyable weekend, for not a lot of expense.
Second, you all went over and above to accommodate us in many ways, with out adding any expense. Hard to find these days, when everyone seems more concerned about their own bottom line. All seven of us were pleased with the accommodations, boats for fishing and meals we enjoyed. All your staff were friendly and willing to please. I especially enjoyed not having to clean our fish and I know my wife enjoyed not having to make meals and clean up after as well.
I know all of us will be talking to everyone we know about how great a place it is at Vermillion Dam Lodge and how much we enjoyed it. We were blessed with a beautiful and fun weekend
We will be sure to return again in the near future. Hope you all have a wonderful fall and winter season.

June 22, 2009

I just wanted to take a moment to share my appreciation for the hospitality we experienced at Vermillion Dam Lodge. Being a loyal Southerner, I have always beleived that the South has the corner on hospitality, but I was wrong..you guys have us beat! From the moment we arrived, you treated us with the utmost kindness. I don't know if you remember giving me the coat off your back when you found out I had forgotten my fleece jacket, BUT I do. Nor do I know if you remember the time you took sharing secrets to the Walleye fishing and even setting me up with some other guests so I could catch Walleye, BUT I do. I have taken many trips all over the United States, but this trip was among the top 3!!!! Every aspect of our stay was wonderful, from the Turkey dinner, to watching Bella chase after the Canadian Geese, to the hours on the Lake catching magnificent Walleye and Norther Pike and then having them appear cleaned and fileted in our fridge..all the while listening to the calls of the Bald Eagles and Loons! I have truly become a fan of Lake vermillion and can't wait to get back on the water in hunt of a Muskie..next time!!!! Thanks to all the staff!!! You Betcha!!!

September 12, 2009

Just want to thank you for another great time at the lodge.  We didn't get the chance to say thanks on the last day of the trip.  This was my third trip to the lodge, my first father-son trip, and definately the most memorable.  The amenties and service were top-notch again this year.  The float plane ride was awesome.  A definate highlight of the trip and our first time in a float plane.
As a lifelong fisherman, what  I most appreciate about your lodge is the fact the staff are fisherman also.  Thank you for putting us on the fish.  We do appreciate your willingness to share your advice and expertise.   We will definately be back again.  Keep up the great work! Thanks Again!

August 8, 2008
Fort Worth, TX

What a great experience we had at VDL! Never been there before but had the best fishing vacation ever! Ed's attention to detail along with his friendly and helpful staff made this a trip absolutely unforgettable. We came all the way from Texas where the there's some darn good fishing as well, but the north woods experience is second to none. Caught a 41" Muskie as well as tons of bluegills, perch and large and smallmouth bass! The Tuesday fish fry was really good.
Very family friendly as well, although I went with a fishing buddy. The pool was sparkling clean and the beach and volleyball area were inviting also. Top notch boats, motors, etc. all fully decked out!
We would definitely recommend it to anyone. We'll be back next summer for sure and many more after that!

March 30, 2008

For a guy like myself one of the things I like best about the  Ramsell weekend is that I'm totally catered to.  All I really have to do is sleep, eat and fish.  I don't have to plan any meals, I don't have to shop for any meals, I just have to pack a few clothes appropriate for the season gather my fishing gear and show up. The food is always great and there is always plenty of it. I also enjoy the group of guys and sometimes gals that gather for meals and listen to the days fishing B.S. fly across the tables. What was seen what was caught where they are caught etc. 
Other aspects that draw me to participate in this weekend are the time of year and the size of fish that the lake has to offer.  October brings cooler days that tends to thin out the recreational traffic on the lake making time on the water more enjoyable. It also tends to lessen the fishing pressure on the lake giving  me just a little more opportunity at catching fish.  Vermilion has big fish.  I don't know what else I can say about that other than I know I've seen the biggest fish I ever seen on this lake.  Just knowing  that the next cast could raise one of those monsters is awesome.
Then there is Larry Ramsell one of muskie fishing's legends and these weekends  have allowed me to develop friendships with the likes of Larry and other fishermen of his caliber and character.  What a pleasure that has been!  Larry is full off muskie fishing history and information and is always willing to share it, both in casual conversation and through his Saturday evening talks.
Last but not least is Vermilion Dam Lodge and its staff. VDL has become my fishing home. I don't believe that there is another resort on the lake that will take care of me as well as you and your staff. It is one of the most friendly and inviting places to stay at. I always feel at home there.

January 30, 2008
Cook, MN

Vermillion Dam Lodge is a perfect place for a weekend retreat. Ed and the crew at VDL always are gracious, helpful, and ready to do whatever it takes to make our time there the best it can be! The cabins have always been wonderful, the food is excellent, and our students and staff leave there each year having had the best time ever! I highly recommend Vermillion Dam Lodge for your event!

January 30, 2008
New London, MN

Our customer fishing trip is an important part of building relationships. Ed and his staff at Vermilion Dam Lodge provide the friendly, professional service which is consistent with the way we treat our customers. We had been going to Canada for the last thirteen years, not knowing we could get excellent fishing and better accomodations and service, locally in Minnesota.

July 19 - 23, 2003
Rochester MN

“We could not believe the friendly service at this resort! … [We] have done a lot of traveling and have stayed at quite a number of resorts but we must say we have never felt so much at home as we have here.  Ed & his staff as so polite & helpful.  The weather was awesome and the fishing ever better, this was only surpassed by the natural beauty of our surroundings.  We will be back next summer!”

June 25 – July 2, 2005
Farley IN

“What an awesome place this is – our best vacation ever – so very relaxing and peaceful.  Closest thing to heaven I have ever seen.  A big ‘thank you’ to the superb staff @ VDL for being top notch.  You are doing a swell job of creating a ‘heaven on earth’ here, Ed – Keep up your good work.  This is our first year here and it will definitely not be our last.  P.S. Food was great!”

July 23 – 25, 2005
North Oaks MN

“This is our first time staying at VDL and it was a very enjoyable week.  The setting couldn’t be more beautiful … the North woods, the lake, the loons, the eagles.  We fished each day and caught Northern Pike, Bass, Bluegills, and ‘pesky little’ Perch!  Saw 8 Muskies but couldn’t get any to bit.  We tried our best but could not find the Walleye!  Thank you for the well – equipped cabin & friendliness of all the VDL staff!  It was great!”

August 25, 2003
Libertyville IL

“Thank You for such a great time!  Your hospitality and accommodations are superb.  The facilities are neat, clean and well kept.  The staff is very customer oriented. … Great Food! Good Fishing! Thank You”

July 9, 2004
Chicago IL

“We had a wonderful time in the Aerie cabin on Lake Vermilion.  We caught a lot of fish off the dock.  In town we had fun shopping! We had a great time on the red rented pontoon.  Being by the dam was very relaxing – at night we fell asleep to the sounds of the water running over the rocks and the loon calling out to each other.  You couldn’t get better help here on the docks than Josh, Marty and Ryan”.

August 11, 2004

"No one could ask for better setting for a wedding.  My son & his bride shared with many their beautiful wedding in the lodge.  A fabulous job of preparation and could not be more pleased with the entire week, new friends, new family, and teaching experiences.  Would recommend to all.”

June 18, 2005

“All had a wonderful time at our Vermilion cabin!  We have stayed in Aerie for 8 years but have been coming to the lodge for nine years now!  The weather was good for the most part except for a few rainy mornings.  We caught many Bluegills, Walleyes, Northerns, Muskies, tons of Perch, Bass and one Crappie.  We caught a huge Walleye that was 6 ½ lbs and 26”.  The biggest Musky was 41” and 19lbs.  Our youngest competitor in the kid’s fishing contest got 3rd place for the smallest fish!  The kids had a wonderful time with all the activities. They loved the shirt painting, fishing contest, bonfire, and everything else.  We look forward to the years ahead at Vermilion!  We love everything about the lodge & can’t wait to return!  Thanks for everything!”

October 19-21 2007
First Baptist Church – Senior High Girls Retreat

“Very much enjoyed this cabin for our second year in a row.  We all had an amazing trip up and hope to come again next year.  The staff was amazing and were awesome to us!  Thank you so much!”

September 26 – 29, 2002
East Bethel MN

“… so happy we decided to come to VDL for our honeymoon.  This place is great!  Never have I been to the lodge before where the staff is so friendly and helpful.  … The food & atmosphere were unforgettable!  We did some fishing - Friday was the best. . … We are already planning our next trip to VDL.”

June 24 – July 1, 2000

“Had a wonderful bug-free week and a lot of good fishing.  Our family reunion was made all the more special by the lake, the wildlife, storms, and sunsets.  We’ll come again – all the way from California in a heartbeat.  Oh, let’s not forgot the ducks – their morning visits were great fun.  The boys on the staff were definitely 5 Star rating great – always upbeat, friendly, helpful.  They clean the fish really well – no bones!”

August 31 – September 7, 2002
Dayton OH – Grand Rapids MI – Louisville KT

“This was our first trip to Lake Vermilion & our vacation was wonderful.  We had exceptional good weather, mostly sunny in the 70s with only one rainy cold day. We had very good fishing. … caught my first Musky 30” trolling and my brother caught his largest Walleye ever, a six pounder.  We were all impressed with the incredible wilderness here; Bald Eagles everywhere. Waking up to sounds of wolves, moose, and my favorite loons.  Special Note: … For the three of us – it was our 1st trip together in over twenty years and rediscovered what being family is all about.”

June 14-22, 2002
Denver CO

“We had a great time with some great friends.  It gave us time to relax and enjoy the beauty of this cabin.  My husband had the chance to see a 51 ½ inch Musky pulled into the boat.  We drove to Canada and the Bear Sanctuary.  It was really neat.  The weather was good.  Caught some sweet fish, have a fish fry.  The fishing off the pier was great for my 10 year old.  You have a Great Place!”

February 8-12, 2006
Zumbro Falls MN – Kasson MN – Theilman MN – Rochester MN

“Our first snowmobile trip to Lake Vermilion.  Lots of great trails to ride and fun places to stop. The cabin is great.  The main living area was roomy so we could have lots of socializing at night.  And great view of the lake & dam.  Love the décor, especially the floor lamp!  Hope to see you again next year!”

May 5-7, 2006
Randolph MN

“Wonderful cabin, very relaxing, just what we needed!  The view & sounds of the dam were great!  Can’t wait to come back.  Everyone was so friendly!  Thank You!”

August 3-10, 2002

“This was our first time at VDL.  We really enjoyed our stay and are sad to leave.  Weather was great – we have the sunburns to prove it.  The kids had fun – something for everyone to enjoy: the bonfire, canoe trip, fish fry, movie night, float plane ride, pool tournament, and t-shirt painting – we did it all!  Fishing was good on the docks and below the dam.  Caught some Sunnies, Large and Small Mouth Bass.  Went through lots of leeches and night crawlers!  The kids enjoyed the kayaks and the paddle boat & seeing otters play in the next bay. Thanks to Ed … Marty, Steve and all the VDL staff.  You have a wonderful place.  What a great getaway!”

July 25, 2003

“What a wonderful week we had up here.  My grandson … won a trophy for the biggest fish caught during the fishing contest.  I wish you could have seen him smile.  Do not miss the fish fry on Tuesday – the food is so good.  Thank you Ed & management.  The hike to the fire tower got me off the couch – which is good.  The float plane ride was great and gives you the chance to see how really big this lake is.  All the campers were nice and all the people who work here are the best!  Its going to be hard to leave tomorrow.  We leave with great memories.”

August 24-30, 2002

“This was our 2nd year at Vermilion Dam Lodge and like always our best vacay of the year.  Our family is 2 adults & 2 kids and there is always stuff here that all of us can do together.  We brought our dog with us for the 1st time and he loves it.  We plan to bring him again next year along with 2 of our friends. We hope they will love it as much as we do.  So much has happened this week and it’s too bad that it went so fast!!!  We need to stay for 2 weeks!  We caught 23 Walleyes and they were all keeps.  … We had a blast!  Can’t wait till next year.”

March 9-11, 2007

“Family Snowmobile Weekend – we rode 200 miles of prestine trails and lake!  Fabulous lunch stops in Babbitt & Tower.  8 foot bonfire – seen by all from the lake.  Beautiful ‘Norway’ for all to enjoy!  Sunny days and warm nights!”

Princeton MN

“What a wonderful time we had.  The helpers were great!  Kids loved the pool and they looked like prunes.  If I had one complaint it would be that a week is only 7 days long – went way to fast!  Our hats are off to VDL – Great Thanks!”

August 19, 2006
Aurora IL

“Everything was great!  We all had a wonderful time. Extremely impressed with the resort.  We look forward to coming back next year.”

August 26, 2006
Prescott WI

"Our first time on Lake Vermillion – It was great!! We caught lot of fish – Muskie, Walleye, Bass and Sunfish.  We enjoyed the pool & the trails – biking all the hills was a workout.  Lots of games of pool and foosball.  The weather was awesome, the cabin cozy and the nature beautiful.  We saw eagles, mink, deer, grouse . . . We didn’t want to leave this beautiful place.”

August 7, 2007
Tampico IL

“The extra activities that were planned throughout the week was wonderful.  The kids had a great time at the kid’s fishing tournament.  The Simores making was q all time favorite also …. But nothing beats the Fish Fry!  The food was wonderful and the atmosphere was very inviting.  The staff is always accommodating and these things that you can rely on year after year.  Are the reasons we continue to come back.  We will see you again next year for another exciting and memorable week!”

July 13, 2007-12-19
Mayer MN

What a wonderful resort!  The cabin, scenery, fishing, activities, and especially the staff was incredible.  Thank you for the fun vacation.  Our family of six (with four children) plus grandparents hope to all return one day.  It’s hard to leave such a restful place!  Thanks a million Vermilion.”
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