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Dakota Recreation Report

Outdoor notes

- Oct. 25: Cannonball Ducks Unlimited (DU) banquet, 5:30 p.m., Our Place, Elgin.

- Oct. 26: Mink, muskrat, and weasel trapping season opens.

- Oct. 26: Theodore Roosevelt Friends of the NRA banquet, 5:30 p.m., Dickinson Elks Club.

- Oct. 30: Dove season closes.

- Nov. 2: Dickinson DU banquet, 5:30 p.m., Dickinson Elks Club.

- Nov. 4: Woodcock season closes.

- Nov. 8: Deer gun season opens.

- Nov. 10: Sandhill crane season closes.


- North Dakota Game and Fish Department District game wardens: No reports from southwestern lakes. Lake Sakakawea and Lake Audubon generally slow.

- Bismarck, Dakota Tackle, Missouri River/area lakes: Low water limiting access on the Missouri River. Look for some shore-fishing but limited reports overall. Some salmon activity on Lake Sakakawea from shore but limited angler numbers and the season is winding down quickly.

- Dickinson, Andrus Outdoors, Lake Sakakawea/area lakes: No reports from Lake Sakakawea and small area lakes.

- Dickinson, Runnings Farm and Fleet, Lake Sakakawea/area lakes: Little to no activity on area lakes.

- Garrison, Cenex Bait and Tackle, Lake Sakakawea: Little activity on Lake Sakakawea and Lake Audubon, although the few anglers out are finding some walleye success on the east end. Look for some pike success casting spoons from shore in Douglas Bay.

- Glen Ulin, Fitterer's Repair, Lake Tschida: No activity.

- Pick City, Scott's Bait and Tackle, Lake Sakakawea/Missouri River: Accessing permitting, Missouri River tailrace producing a variety of trout, salmon, and catfish with best success at night. Hug the west side and go towards the middle of channel for safest access due to low water levels. Try the Honey Hole with jigs or Lindy rigs and minnows or plastics. Work a variety of presentations in the chutes. No activity down river with low water. Lake Sakakawea has a meager salmon bite yet from both boat and shore. Continued pike success but move around for walleye -- anywhere from Beacon Point on Sakakawea State Park west to Douglas Bay. Lake Audubon good but inconsistent for walleye around the east end embankment.

- New Town, Scenic 23, Lake Sakakawea: Weather permitting, look for a good fall walleye bite from Deepwater Bay north to Shell Village, including the cross, Shell Village, and Sheep Island. Try 15 to 30 feet using jigs and minnows.

- Watford City, One-Stop, Lake Sakakawea: Limited activity.

- Williston, Scenic Sports, Lake Sakakawea/Missouri River: Missouri River is slow and difficult fishing. Little Muddy River producing a few walleye, however.


- NDGF Department game wardens: Hunter success in central N.D. has been somewhat limited because waterfowl tend to be in pockets with lots of open and available water. Pockets of pheasant success, as well, in central N.D. Standing row crops are limiting success, too.

- Northwest N.D.: Good numbers of lesser moved into Mountrail County and along Lake Sakakawea but birds are tough to decoy. Not much pheasant success along the midsection of Lake Sakakawea. Fair to good pheasant success around the Williston area. Not much waterfowl movement in the area, though.

- Southwest N.D.: Pheasant numbers are definitely down. Hunters are getting birds but working much harder and longer for success. Birds are hanging in unharvested corn. Fair to good pheasant success in the McKenzie County area. Elk hunters are struggling, as well.

- West-central N.D.: Continued fair to good duck success with more geese starting to move in along the east end of Lake Sakakawea and Lake Audubon. Birds aren't consistent in their feeding patterns and locations, however. Fair pheasant success but standing row crops is limiting harvest.

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