March 9, 2012
Saturday: Spring crow season opens.
Sunday: Bobcat, mink and weasel seasons close.
March 15: Darkhouse spearfishing season closes.
March 15: Permanent icehouses must be off state lakes but can be used if removed daily.
March 28: Moose, elk and bighorn sheep licenses due.
April 1: New fishing licenses due.
Ice is never completely safe. Use caution, especially in areas with vegetation and around bridges. Check conditions locally before venturing out.
Devils Lake elevation, March 7: 1,453.42 feet above mean sea level (msl).
Stump Lake elevation, March 7: 1,453.43 msl.
Lake Sakakawea elevation, March 7: 1,837.9 msl; 22,000 cubic feet per second average (CFS) Garrison Dam daily releases.
N.D. Game & Fish Dept. Dist. game wardens: Inconsistent weather created an inconsistent bite on many southeastern and eastern lakes. Some on-the-ice problems resulted with slushy access and freeze-down of some icehouses. Pressure ridges, frozen slush and marginal ice are creating safety issues in places. Look for northern pike and perch bite to return but perch will likely still be in deep water with pike in a variety of depths. Try smelt, venison bits or hotdogs – and experiment for pike. Most perch are small with occasional keeper mixed in. Try minnows, wax worms or minnow heads. Walleye bite is generally slow at best with a fast increase in activity around the last one-half to hour of daylight. Try minnows and jigs. Adams Lake in Eddy County fair to good for perch. Coe Lake fair for perch but lots of small ones. Devils Lake slowed. Lake Audubon slow. Goose Lake continues producing perch.
Antelope Lake: Fair to good for perch and walleye.
Clear Lake (Pierce Co.): Fair to good for perch and walleye.
Coal Mine Lake, Anamoose: Fair for pike. Slow for perch.
Devils Lake, Ed’s Bait & Tackle, Devils Lake: Pelican Lake, west side of the Minnewaukan Flats and Doc Hagen’s continue producing walleye in 8 to 20 feet working structure. Perch success remains the most consistent at Black Tiger and East Tiger bays. Try Lake Irvine or north of 6-Mile Bay for pike.
Devils Lake, Lakeview Lodge, Devils Lake: Weather fronts slowed activity but look for improving overall success with stable weather. Look for water on top of the ice and watch shorelines with warmer weather.
Devils Lake, Woodland Resort, Creel Bay, Devils Lake: Continued fair success, although weather fronts slowed activity earlier. Walleye remain fair to good but perch are getting finicky. Fish are there but they’re picky on the bite. Pike remain good. Try the dome house, towers, north end of Creel, casino, Bud Bay and East Devils Lake for perch.
Goose Lake, Harvey: Fair to good for perch and walleye.
Harvey Dam, Harvey: Fair for pike, slow for other species.
Jamestown Reservoir, Dan’s Sooper Stop, Jamestown: Snow and weather limited reports with fewer anglers on the ice. Activity continues on small area lakes.
Jamestown Reservoir, Pioneer Bait Shop, Jamestown: Watch for water on top of the ice and along the shorelines. Not many reports from the reservoir. Lots of activity at Devils Lake with fair, but inconsistent success.
Lake Ashtabula, Bayshore, Valley City: Last week’s snow limited activity. Some small area lakes fair to good, but spotty, for perch.
Lake Sakakawea, Cenex Bait & Tackle, Garrison: Lake Sakakawea producing northern pike in several locations but ice conditions aren’t the best. Douglas Bay remains fair for perch and pike. Try Centennial Bay for perch. Lake Audubon slowed somewhat but anglers are still finding a few walleye. Missouri River fair for walleye.
Lake Sakakawea, Scott’s Bait & Tackle, Pick City: Weather permitting, Missouri River tailrace continues producing walleye during the day using minnows and jigs or plastics. Try honey hole, coal veins or cable crossings. Try jigs and minnows from the rocks from shore but success has slowed. Fair to good for pike from both shore and boat. Lake Sakakawea producing some pike around Wolf Creek or Sakakawea State Park, spearing or hook-and-line. Lake Audubon spotty for walleye.
Missouri River, Dakota Tackle, Bismarck: Beaver Bay on Lake Oahe fair for walleye. Lake Etta fair for 3- to 6-pound pike. Goose and Mud lakes continue producing perch.
Pipestem Reservoir, Dan’s Sooper Stop, Jamestown: Continued fair to good for crappie and perch.
Pipestem Reservoir, Pioneer Bait Shop, Jamestown: Continued fair for crappie.
Spiritwood Lake, Dan’s Sooper Stop, Jamestown: Limited reports.
Spiritwood Lake, Pioneer Bait Shop, Jamestown: Not many reports.
Downhill skiing, March 7:
Bears Den Mountain, Fort Ransom: Ski area remains closed.
Bottineau Winter Park, Bottineau: 10- to 18-inch base with powder conditions. All runs and lifts open with several jumps and rails in the Terrain Park and 3 runs in the Tube Park.
Huff Hills, Mandan: 21- to 46-inch base with powder and packed powder conditions. All runs and 2 lifts open with Bunny Tow.
N.D. Parks & Recreation Report cross-country ski trails report:
Fort Ransom: Trails groomed and in good condition but could deteriorate with warm weather.
Grahams Island, Devils Lake: Trails open and in fair condition.
Lake Metigoshe, Bottineau: Trails open but in poor condition.
Light goose migration:
North Dakota: About 4 to 6 inches of snow cover remains in the southeast so bird movement will be held to the south around the snow line.
South Dakota: Hamlin County has good numbers of birds with several thousand birds using Dry Lake and Lake Poinsett with small flocks scattered throughout the county. Best opportunities could be north and south of Interstate-90 west of Sioux Falls and along the S.D.-Nebraska border with birds scattered north and south in southeastern S.D.
Numbers to know:
N.D. Game & Fish Department, main Bismarck office: 328-6300; website: (http://gf.nd.gov).
N.D. Game & Fish Department, Jamestown office: 253-6480.
RAP, Report All Poachers: (800) 472-2121.
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Bismarck, website: (www.fws.gov/northdakotafieldoffice).