Weather Forecast


Dakota Recreation Report

Outdoor notes

- Ice is never completely safe. Avoid areas with vegetation, moving water, pressure ridges, and springs. Check with local bait shops for any ice condition information.

- Arrowwood, Audubon, Des Lacs, J. Clark Salyer, Lake Alice, Lake Zahl, Long Lake, Lostwood, Tewaukon, and Upper Souris National Wildlife Refuges now open for pheasant hunting. Check with local headquarters for more information and refuge-specific information.

- Nov. 29: Deer muzzleloader season opens.

- Dec. 1: White-fronted goose, ducks, mergansers, snipe, and coot seasons close.

- Dec. 2: North Dakota Game and Fish Department public advisory board meeting, Scranton Town Hall, Scranton, 7 p.m.

- Dec. 7: High Plains Duck Unit opens and merganser season re-opens.

- Dec. 7: Pretty Rock Mule Deer Foundation banquet, Elgin.


- NDGF Department District game wardens: Back bays on Lake Audubon are gaining but likely remain marginal for access yet.

- Bismarck, Dakota Tackle, Missouri River/area lakes: Small area lakes icing over but little activity yet. Test with an ice bar before going on the ice. No Missouri River reports.

- Dickinson, Andrus Outdoors, Lake Sakakawea/area lakes: Some activity on Indian Creek Dam for small walleye and perch. Patterson Lake producing smaller walleye.

- Dickinson, Runnings Farm and Fleet, Lake Sakakawea/area lakes: Ice starting to form on area lakes but limited activity yet until ice conditions improve. Some activity in the back bays at Van Hook Arm and Tobacco Garden on Lake Sakakawea.

- Garrison, Cenex Bait and Tackle, Lake Sakakawea: Lake Sakakawea and Lake Audubon are gaining ice but extreme caution is advised.

- Glen Ullin, Fitterer’s Inc., Lake Tschida: No activity on Lake Tschida until ice conditions improve. Some anglers walking onto Sweetbriar Lake.

- Mandan, Southside MVP, Missouri River/area lakes: Missouri River remains the same with a few anglers on the water.

- Pick City, Scott’s Bait and Tackle, Lake Sakakawea/Missouri River: Limited angling activity on the Missouri River.

- New Town, Scenic 23, Lake Sakakawea: Van Hook Arm ramps iced over so there is no boat fishing and ice in the bays is still unsafe. The main lake and main part of the Arm is still open.

- Watford City, One-Stop, Lake Sakakawea: some interest in getting onto the back bays of Lake Sakakawea.

- Williston, Scenic Sports, Lake Sakakawea/Missouri River: No reports with anglers waiting for better ice conditions.


- NDGF Department game warden: Look for waterfowl activity along the open water of the Missouri River System. Ongoing corn harvest is going to help pheasant hunters but they will still have to work hard for any birds.

- Northwest N.D.: Most waterfowl moved out of the midsection of Lake Sakakawea with part of the Van Hook Arm icing over. Continued fair pheasant success around the Williston area. Look for lots of coyote activity.

- Southwest N.D.: Some bird hunters still finding fair success.

- West-central N.D.: Good numbers of geese along the eastern end of Lake Sakakawea and the Missouri River with fair pheasant numbers. Look for better success as corn and sunflower harvest progresses.

Numbers to know

- NDGF Department main Bismarck office: 701-328-6300; website (

- NDGF Department Dickinson office: 701-227-7431.

- Report All Poachers: 800-472-2121.

-V U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Bismarck, website: (

Patricia Stockdill