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Dakota Recreation Report

Outdoor notes

- Sept. 28: Tundra swan and nonresident waterfowl seasons open.

- Sept. 28: MonDak Pheasants Forever chapter banquet, 4:30 p.m., Upper Missouri Valley Fairgrounds, Williston.

- Sept. 29: Youth deer season closes.

- Oct. 4: Van Hook Ducks Unlimited banquet, 4:30 p.m., 4 Bears Casino, New Town.

- Oct. 5 and 6: Youth pheasant season.

- Oct. 4: Upper Missouri Basin Friends of the NRA banquet, 4:30 p.m., Williams County Fairgrounds.

- Oct. 10: Bismarck DU banquet, 5:30 p.m., Ramkota Inn, Bismarck.

- Oct. 11: Southwest Friends of the NRA banquet, 4:30 p.m., Scranton Community Center.

- Oct. 12: Pheasant and fall turkey seasons open.

- Oct. 12: Dunn County Pheasants Forever chapter banquet, 5 p.m., Buckskin Bar.


- Sept. 28: Missouri River, tailrace; Lake Sakakawea, Beulah Bay.

- Sept. 29: Lake Sakakawea, Sakakawea State Park; Lake Oahe, Hazelton.


- North Dakota Game and Fish Department District game wardens: No reports from southwestern area lakes or Lake Sakakawea.

- Bismarck, Dakota Tackle, Missouri River/area lakes: Some activity on the Missouri River south of Hazelton. Not many walleye but those caught are nice-sized. Look for fish to start to move up river. Limited reports from small area lakes.

- Dickinson, Andrus Outdoors, Lake Sakakawea/area lakes: Limited activity on best on area lakes.

- Dickinson, Runnings Farm and Fleet, Lake Sakakawea/area lakes: Limited activity on Lake Sakakawea and small area lakes.

- Garrison, Cenex Bait and Tackle, Lake Sakakawea: Not much activity but those going to Lake Sakakawea are finding nice-sized walleye with some pike success. Try shallow in the bays or as deep as 30 feet. No reports from Lake Audubon or Missouri River.

- Glen Ullin, Fitterer's Inc., Lake Tschida: Limited activity.

- Pick City, Scott's Bait and Tackle, Lake Sakakawea/Missouri River: Access down river from the Missouri River tailrace can be challenging at times with low water levels. Try a variety of presentations around the mouth of the spillway channel, second coal vein, or stumps for a mix of species, including small walleye. Chutes and honey hole have limited success for most species but look for better numbers of catfish. Try 3-way swivels in the morning and evening. Use extreme caution with water levels, though. Shore-fishing producing a mix of species in the morning and evening from the rocks or boat ramp. Overall success is limited, though, from boat and shore. Lake Sakakawea producing walleye in the bays and off main lake points. Try 20 to 40 feet using Lindy rigs or spinners with bottom bouncers and nightcrawlers. Also try jigs with minnows and nightcrawlers. Try mixing up patterns. Most fish in the shallows are small. Try Silo Bay on the south shore, Alcatraz Island, Sakakawea State Park, or Douglas Bay. Some salmon success longlining along the face of the dam with walleye mixed in. Salmon success is spotty and inconsistent, though. Look for improving success from shore.

- New Town, Scenic 23, Lake Sakakawea: Van Hook Arm slowed for walleye with best success working deep.

- New Town, Van Hook Bait and Tackle, Lake Sakakawea: Try 23 to 28 feet for walleye with fish moving towards the north end of the Van Hook Arm. Try Slide Point or Gull Island, as well as south around 8-Pound Island or Shell Village. Continued pike success from shore using smelt or spinner bait.

- Watford City, One-Stop, Lake Sakakawea: Some anglers going to Tobacco Garden with OK walleye success but others are finding more pike. Try crankbaits in 30 feet for walleye.

- Watford City, Tobacco Garden Resort, Lake Sakakawea: Continued fair success with some nice walleye taken using a variety of presentations.

- Williston, Scenic Sports, Lake Sakakawea/Missouri River: Missouri River starting to produce sauger with a few walleye mixed in. Try minnows. Lake Sakakawea generally slow around White Earth Bay. Try Trenton Lake for crappie.


- NDGF Department game wardens: No reports from southwest N.D.

- Northwest N.D.: Fair to good waterfowl success with good numbers of ducks. Some lesser starting to move into the midsection of Lake Sakakawea. Fair grouse and partridge success along portions of the midsection, as well.

- Southwest N.D.: Limited deer numbers are slowing archery success. Fair to good grouse and partridge success.

- West-central N.D.: Some Canada goose success around the east end of Lake Sakakawea. A few cranes in the area, as well.

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.

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

Patricia Stockdill