Dakota Recreation Report
By: Patricia Stockdill, The Dickinson Press
- Jan. 19: Wildlife Wednesday, 7 p.m., North Dakota Game and Fish Department, 100 N. Bismarck Expressway. Topic: Wild game cleaning and care.
- Jan. 26: Wildlife Wednesday, N.D. Game and Fish Department, 100 N. Bismarck Expressway. Topic: Fur trapping techniques and history.
- Saturday: Lake Oahe, Beaver Bay, beginning at 8 a.m.
- Ice is never completely safe. Use caution, especially around bridges and areas with vegetation. Check local conditions before venturing onto ice. Let someone know your location and estimated return time.
- Lake Sakakawea elevation, Wednesday: 1,841.00 feet above mean sea level; 23,000 cubic feet per second Garrison Dam average daily releases.
- N.D. Game and Fish Department District Game Wardens: Fishing slow on Raleigh Reservoir with fair access. Fair to good for small crappie on Sheep Creek with fair access, Small perch and walleye producing on Indian Creek with good access. Moderate success on Camels Hump Dam. Some northern pike and perch success around Wolf Creek on Lake Sakakawea. Walking is the best access. Some activity on Lake Audubon with best vehicle access off the East Totten boat ramp. Water remains on the ice, coming up through cracks. Missouri River tailrace and wing walls remain OK, weather permitting.
- Bismarck, Dakota Tackle, Missouri River/area lakes: Froehlich Dam fair for keeper northern pike, walleye, and nice-sized bluegill. No crappie reports. Most activity on Lake Oahe remains at Beaver and Cattail bays. Walleye activity continues at Lake Tschida.
- Dickinson, Andrus Outdoors, Lake Sakakawea/area lakes: Continued fair to good for perch and small walleye at Indian Creek Dam. Larson Lake producing northern pike using minnows. Limited reports from Lake Sakakawea due to weather.
- Dickinson, Runnings Farm & Fleet, Lake Sakakawea/area lakes: Indian Creek continues producing small walleye and perch. Lake Tschida fair for walleye and small northern pike. Try 25 to 35 feet. Larson Lake producing decent-sized northerns using pike rigs. McKenzie Bay on Lake Sakakawea has difficult access but those going are finding walleye and sauger success. Try 15 to 45 feet using buckshot spoons or Swedish pimples.
- Garrison, Cenex Bait & Tackle, Lake Sakakawea: Some walleye activity on Lake Audubon. Activity goes in short spurts so it’s a matter of being there at the right time. Most activity off of East Totten or far east end. Access remains limited so snowmobiles provide the best activity to get around on more areas of the lake. Overall success slow to fair but spotty. Sort through the small ones for keepers. Some activity at Douglas and Garrison bays on Lake Sakakawea with anglers accessing with snowmobiles. Access available at Garrison Bay from the Fort Stevenson State Park west boat ramp. Ice depths are inconsistent on both lakes with extreme caution necessary. Missouri River tailrace fair from boat and the wing walls, weather permitting.
- Glen Ullin, Fitterer’s Inc., Lake Tschida: Access becoming more difficult to Lake Tschida with limited reports.
- Mandan, Southside MVP, Missouri River/area lakes: Anglers are finding a mix of perch, walleye, northern pike, and crappie off the Fort Yates boat landing on Lake Oahe. Beaver Bay slowed but anglers still finding some walleye, small perch, and pike.
- Watford City, One-Stop, Lake Sakakawea: Little activity on Lake Sakakawea.
r Williston, Scenic Sports, Lake Sakakawea/Missouri River: Limited reports from Lake Sakakawea and the Yellowstone and Missouri rivers.
Snowmobile trail report
- Cattail (Steele, Cass, and Traill counties): 9-inch snow depth. Trail open, groomed and in good condition.
- East Central Valley (Fargo, Casselton area): Trails open, in good condition, and groomed with the exception of the rural Cass North Trail, which is temporarily closed. 11-inch snow depth.
- Lake Region (Devils Lake area): 6-inch snow depth. Trails open, groomed, and in good condition.
- May-Port (Mayville, Portland area): 8-inch snow depth. Trail open, groomed, and in good condition.
- Missouri Valley (Bismarck, Linton area): 8-inch snow depth. Trails open, groomed, and in good condition.
- North Central (Leeds, Rugby area): 11-inch snow depth. Trails open, groomed, and in good condition.
- Northeast (Cavalier, Langdon, Edinburg area): 6-inch snow depth. Trails open, groomed, and in good condition.
- Peace Garden (Bottineau, Rolla area): 10-inch snow depth. Trail system is in preparation for opening with several sections re-routed due to thin ice. Tentative plans call for opening this week.
- Red River North (Grafton): 6-inch snow depth. Trails open and in good condition with some sections groomed.
- Red River South (Grand Forks, Fordville, Manvel area): 6-inch snow depth. Trails open, in good condition, and groomed but some sections have marginal snow.
- Sargent County (Sargent and Richland counties): 13-inch snow depth. Trails are in the process of opening.
- Sheyenne Valley (Jamestown, Valley City, Lisbon, Oakes area): 10-inch snow depth. Trails open and in good condition with some sections of the trail are groomed.
- Sno-Trails (McHenry & Ward counties): 19-inch snow depth. Trails opened, groomed, and in good condition.
- Southern Valley (Wahpeton, Mooreton area): 10-inch snow depth. Trails open and in good condition, with grooming complete, depending on weather.
Downhill ski report
- Big Sky, Big Sky, Mont.: 47- to 70-inch base with powder, machine-groomed conditions. 5 inches new snow recently. All runs and 19 lifts open and operating, along with 1 tube lane and Terrain Park.
- Deer Mountain Ski Area, Lead, S.D.: Powder and machine-groomed base. All runs open and lifts operating.
- Huff Hills, Mandan: 20- to 28-inch base with 14 runs, 2 lifts, and the Bunny Tow open.
- Red Lodge, Red Lodge, Mont.: 0- to 28-inch base with powder and packed powder conditions. 53 runs open and 6 lifts operating.
- Terry Peak, Lead, S.D.: 12- to 24-inch base with machine-groomed, packed conditions. 20 runs open and 5 lifts operating. More than a foot of snow over the past week.
Cross-country ski trail report
- Annual or day use pass needed.
- Cross Ranch, Hensler: All trails open and in good condition with at least 20 inches of snow. Warming house/visitor center open weekends 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Fort Lincoln, Mandan: Trails open and in good condition but not groomed. At least 13 to 18 inches snow depth.
- Fort Stevenson, Garrison: About 3 inches new snow over the weekend with all trails having a nice base. Trails typically groomed on Friday, weather permitting.
Numbers to know
- North Dakota Game and Fish Department main Bismarck office: 701-328-6300, website gf.nd.gov.
- N.D. Game and Fish Department Dickinson office: 701-227-7431.
- Report poachers: 800-472-2121.
- U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Bismarck, website: www.fws.gov/northdakotafieldoffice.