Dakota Recreation Report
Dec. 24, 2010
Dec. 31: Light goose, Missouri River Zone Canada goose seasons close.
Jan. 2: Archery deer, partridge, ruffed grouse, High Plains Duck Unit, sharp-tailed grouse, pheasant, swan, & squirrel seasons close.
Jan. 9: Fall turkey season closes.
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.
Devils Lake elevation, Dec. 22: 1,451.57 feet above mean sea level (msl).
Stump Lake elevation, Dec. 22: 1,451.47 msl.
Lake Sakakawea elevation, Dec. 22: 1,842 msl; 18,000 cubic feet per second average Garrison Dam daily releases.
N.D. Game & Fish Dept. Dist. Game Wardens: Fishing starting to hit its stride on southeastern and south-central lakes with continued decent reports of perch and occasional walleye across local small lakes in McIntosh, LaMoure, and Sargent counties up to Barnes County. It’s not quite a steady bite yet but with some patience anglers could find good perch success. Ice varies from 6 to 15 inches and new snow won’t help ice formation or access. Limited activity on Lake Audubon and Lake Sakakawea due to heavy snow and limited access.
Coal Mine Lake, Anamoose: Fair for northern pike but light activity and extremely limited access.
Devils Lake, Ed’s Bait & Tackle, Devils Lake: Most anglers accessing the lake with snowmobiles with continued walleye success in the morning and evening. Try Mission Bay, Doc Hagen’s or East Bay. Angler numbers are extremely limited, though.
Devils Lake, Lakeview Lodge, Devils Lake: Limited activity due to snow, although the north end of Walford’s Bay continues to produce some northern pike both spearing and hook-and-line. No reports from Lake Irvine.
Devils Lake, West Bay Resort, Minnewaukan: Lots of snow with best access with snowmobiles or 4-wheelers. Some trails will be plowed as soon as ice and weather conditions permit.
Devils Lake, Woodland Resort, Creel Bay, Devils Lake: Walford’s Bay continues producing northern pike but access is difficult. Lake Irvine had activity but access is limited until trails can be plowed. Some trails available on Creel Bay. Don’t drill holes in any trails because water is coming up and it creates slush and dangerous conditions.
Goose Lake, Harvey: Some northern pike success but access is with snowmobile only.
Harvey Dam, Harvey: Fair for northern pike and walleye success but access is limited and weight of the snow is pushing water up through ice holes.
Jamestown Reservoir, Dan’s Sooper Stop, Jamestown: A good number of houses on the lake with hit-and-miss success.
Jamestown Reservoir, Pioneer Bait Shop, Jamestown: Lots of snow cover on area lakes and water is coming up through ice holes. Smaller perch lakes are generally fair to good. Scattered walleye success on the reservoir.
Lake Ashtabula, Bayshore, Valley City: Ice is improving although the lake still has a good amount of snow on it. Look for more activity over the holidays. The lake still has a lot of snow on it, however. Best access is still by walking, snowmobiles or 4-wheelers.
Lake Sakakawea, Cenex Bait & Tackle, Garrison: A few anglers accessing Lake Audubon with snowmobiles but access to and around the lake is difficult at best. Use extreme caution because of varying ice depths and heavy snow cover. Weight of the snow is pushing water through ice holes in some areas. Those going are finding a light mix of walleye and perch. Missouri River tailrace producing walleye from boats, weather permitting.
Lake Sakakawea, Scott’s Bait & Tackle, Pick City: Nelson Bay on Lake Audubon has fair walleye success. Snow is making access difficult. Weather permitting, anglers continue going to the Missouri River tailrace. Sort through for keeper walleye. Try jigs and minnows. Also try the wing walls.
Missouri River, Dakota Tackle, Bismarck: Most activity on Lake Oahe remains around Beaver and Cattail bays. Also try Langeliers Bay.
Pipestem Reservoir, Pioneer Bait Shop, Jamestown: Ice conditions aren’t the best so use caution. Limited activity because of poor ice.
Red River, River Keepers, Fargo: Red River has open water in areas in Fargo-Moorhead.
Spiritwood Lake, Pioneer Bait Shop, Jamestown: Ice conditions aren’t the best so use caution. Limited activity with poor ice.
Hunting & Migration:
N.D. Game & Fish Dept. Dist. Game Wardens: Southeast and south-central N.D. still have late season pheasants around but hunting pressure is light. Areas are limited for Canada goose hunting access in the Missouri River Zone but those going are finding some success. Weather permitting, hunters are still finding fair pheasant success but access is difficult. A few coyote hunters out.
Snowmobile N.D. trail report:
Sno-Trails (McHenry & Ward counties): Eastern portion of the trails are open with 15-inch snow depth prior to snow earlier this week.
Other trails are closed with several in preparation to open soon.
Fort Ransom, Fort Ransom: Trails groomed and in excellent condition. However, snow is too deep to groom the Oak Ridge Trail.
Turtle River, Arvilla: 6 inches new snow with 4-inch base. Trails groomed and in excellent condition.
Bears Den Mountain, Fort Ransom: Ski area open. Call (701) 973-2711 for schedule and more information.
Bottineau Winter Park, Bottineau: Open daily through Jan. 2 but closed Christmas Day. 8- to 15-inch base with powder conditions. Several inches new snow over past week. Chair lift and 3 handle lifts operating with 8 trails and 3 tube runs open.
Frostfire Ski Area, Walhalla: All trails open with 24-inch base and about 4 inches new snow. Open daily through Jan. 2 except closed Christmas Day.
Huff Hills, Mandan: 15- to 20-inch base with Blue Lift and Bunny Tow operating. 15 trails open. 5 inches snow early in the week. Open daily over Christmas break except closed Christmas Day.
N.D. Parks & Recreation Dept. State Parks cross-country skiing trail report:
Lake Metigoshe, Bottineau: Several inches of new snow with trails packed and tracked and in good to excellent condition. Sledding hill in excellent shape.
Numbers to know:
N.D. Game & Fish Department, main Bismarck office: 328-6300; Web site: (http://gf.nd.gov).
N.D. Game & Fish Department, Jamestown office: 253-6480.
RAP, Report All Poachers: (800) 472-2121.