Dakota Recreation Report
By: Patricia Stockdill, The Dickinson Press
- Oct. 23: Mink, muskratt and weasel trapping season opens.
- Saturday: Missouri River, Lewis & Clark Bridge.
- Lake Sakakawea elevation, Wednesday: 1,847.3 feet above mean sea level; 29,800 cubic feet per second average Garrison Dam daily releases.
- North Dakota Game and Fish Department District Game Wardens: Lake Sakakawea slow for walleye with salmon activity slowing down. Fish are turning color.
- Bismarck, Dakota Tackle, Missouri River/area lakes: Missouri River improving for walleye with most activity from Hazelton to the south using minnows and jigs. Occasional walleye around Bismarck-Mandan but success is tougher.
- Dickinson, Andrus Outdoors, Lake Sakakawea/area lakes: Lake Sakakawea remains slow although there’s still some sauger success in 40 to 45 using jigs and minnows. No walleye reports. Lake Tschida good for walleye. Work 12 to 15 feet using Lindy rigs or spinners with minnows or nightcrawlers. Shadehill Dam good for 17- to 21-inch walleye. Indian Creek Dam producing walleye with a few perch mixed in. Try nightcrawlers.
- Dickinson, Runnings Farm & Fleet, Lake Sakakawea/area lakes: Limited reports with more people hunting than fishing.
- Glen Ullin, Fitterer’s Inc., Lake Tschida: Not much activity.
- Mandan, Southside MVP, Missouri River/area lakes: Missouri River improving for walleye, although inconsistent. Good numbers of small walleye but there’s no pattern yet. Better success is from Hazelton to the south.
- Pick City, Scott’s Bait & Tackle, Lake Sakakawea/Missouri River: Not much activity on Lake Sakakawea but try working deep water in 40 feet with spinners with bottom bouncers or crankbaits for walleye. Spotty salmon success with boat success slowing down. Try variety of presentations from shore, including crankbaits or salmon eggs. Lots of anglers after salmon, though, and they’re seeing fish but the bite is tough. Missouri River is mediocre at best for walleye but good numbers of catfish. Try a night bite from shore with crankbaits for the best walleye success. A few walleye taken down river from boat, though. Try trolling the tailrace with crankbaits for a mix of walleye and catfish. Water temperatures are warm on the lake and river.
- New Town, Van Hook Bait & Tackle, Lake Sakakawea: Improving sauger success in 38 to 50 feet. Try around Shell Village with big jigs and minnows.
- Ray, Lund’s Landing, Whitetail Bay, Lake Sakakawea: Improving sauger success in deep water, 30 feet and more, using big jigs and minnows. Try the guard camp or Lewis & Clark State Park.
- Watford City, Tobacco Garden Resort, Lake Sakakawea: Improving walleye and sauger success using Lindy rigs or jigs and minnows.
- Williston, Scenic Sports, Lake Sakakawea/Missouri River: Yellowstone River fair to good for walleye with its cleaner water. Missouri River is clearing up and look for continued improving walleye success. Some big sauger and walleye being taken.
- N.D. Game and Fish Department District Game Wardens: Watch dry field conditions and don’t field dress birds along roads as a courtesy to non-hunters.
- Northwest N.D.: Lots of hunters out for the pheasant opener with good success. Some waterfowl remain around Lake Sakakawea’s midsection.
- Southwest N.D.: Good pheasant numbers throughout much of the region with lots of activity. Standing crop is limiting success in some areas.
- West-central N.D.: Lots of pheasant activity for the opener. Watch identification with many young broods yet. Fair waterfowl numbers and success.
Numbers to know
- North Dakota Game and Fish Department main Bismarck office: 701-328-6300, website gf.nd.gov.
- N.D. Game and Fish Deptartment Dickinson office: 701-227-7431.
- Report All Poachers: 1-800-472-2121.
- U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Bismarck, website: www.fws.gov/northdakotafieldoffice.