Dakota Recreation Report
Feb. 15, 2013
Ice is never completely safe. Avoid areas with vegetation, moving water, pressure ridges, and springs. Check with local bait shops for any ice condition information. Remember that anglers must be within 150 feet of their tip-ups and rods.
Snow and cold weather improving predator hunting opportunities in the southeast. Watch for posted land and never chase or harass any wildlife, including coyotes.
Saturday: Spring light goose season opens, although birds are in the southern U.S. yet.
Saturday: Jamestown Reservoir, Lake Ashtabula, Lake LaMoure.
Sat. & Sun.: Lake Sakakawea.
Feb. 23: Coldwater Lake.
Feb. 24: Silver Lake.
Devils Lake elevation, Feb. 13: 1,451.4 feet above mean sea level (MSL).
Stump Lake elevation, Feb. 13: 1,451.43 MSL.
Lake Sakakawea elevation, Feb. 13: 1,827.9 MSL; 23,000 cubic feet per second average (CFS) Garrison Dam daily releases.
N.D. Game & Fish Dept. Dist. game wardens: Heavy snow in the southeast is limiting access on small lakes to snowmobile or walking. Access is better on larger lakes such as Lake Ashtabula, Casselton Reservoir, and Golden Lake. Overall fishing remains hit-and-miss. Best success is for pike targeting back bays and transition zones of many waters in Barnes, Stutsman, and LaMoure counties. Try tip-ups with smelt or brightly colored jigs with minnows. Panfish and walleye remain off-and-on. Try wax worms with jigs or buckshot rattling spoons in the early morning hours in deeper water from 12- to 20 feet. Devils Lake still slow but improving somewhat. Try deep humps and basins for perch and walleye but work shallow water in the trees for pike. Lake Sakakawea hit-and-miss for pike. Ice conditions vary greatly.
Devils Lake, Ed’s Bait & Tackle, Devils Lake: Success slowed so the key is to get out and move around more with fish becoming more inconsistent with alternating weather patterns. Try the same locations but vary depth and drill a lot of holes.
Devils Lake, Lakeview Lodge, Devils Lake: Fair to good walleye and perch success with stable weather.
Devils Lake, West Bay Resort, Minnewaukan: Hit-and-miss walleye and perch success but continued good pike activity.
Devils Lake, Woodland Resort, Creel Bay, Devils Lake: Sporadic perch success with anglers marking fish but the bite is light. Try 40 feet and deeper. Fair to good walleye success with some big fish being taken. Most activity in on the big lake and Creel Bay. Try 10 to 25 feet.
Jamestown Reservoir, Pioneer Bait Shop, Jamestown: Access onto small area lakes is more difficult with last weekend’s storm with overall limited activity.
Jamestown Reservoir, Sooper Stop, Jamestown: Weekend storm limited activity.
Lake Ashtabula, Bayshore, Valley City: Lake has limited access after last weekend’s storm but weather and access permitting, anglers are still going out. Success is slow overall. Try small area perch lakes but check access first.
Lake Sakakawea, Cenex Bait & Tackle, Garrison: Lake Sakakawea fair throughout much of the east end for walleye and pike. Lake Audubon fair for walleye.
Lake Sakakawea, Scott’s Bait & Tackle, Pick City: Continued pike success from shore on the Missouri River. A few boats working down river with limited walleye success. Wing walls still producing some walleye. Lake Sakakawea slow but try Wolf Creek, Sakakawea State Park around Alcatraz and Beulah and Hazen bays for pike and walleye.
Lonetree WMA area lakes, Harvey: Coal Mine Lake continues producing pike. Hurdsfield and Antelope lakes fair to good for perch and walleye. Goose Lake for perch, walleye, and pike. Harvey Dam has little to no activity.
Missouri River, Dakota Tackle, Bismarck: Goose Lake, Wing, producing numbers of perch with occasional nice-sized one mixed in with activity at Rice Lake. Missouri River quiet although some darkhouse spearing for pike on Lake Sakakawea.
Pipestem Reservoir, Pioneer Bait Shop, Jamestown: Access onto small area lakes is more difficult with last weekend’s storm with overall limited activity.
Pipestem Reservoir, Sooper Stop, Jamestown: Not much activity with increasing snow.
Red River, River Keepers, Fargo: Few anglers out on the river recently with overall slow success.
Spiritwood Lake, Pioneer Bait Shop, Jamestown: Limited activity.
Spiritwood Lake, Sooper Stop, Jamestown: Not much activity.
Bears Den Mtn. Ski Area, Fort Ransom: No updates available.
Bottineau Winter Park, Bottineau: 8- to 12inch groomed powder base. All runs and lifts open with Tubing and Terrain parks.
Frostfire Ski Area, Walhalla: About 6 inches new snow with 20-inch base. All runs and lifts open.
Huffs Hills Ski Area, Mandan: 12- to 20-inch base with 7 runs and 2 lifts open.
N.D. Parks & Recreation Dept. cross-country ski trails:
Fort Ransom: About 10 inches new snow. Trails groomed and in good condition.
Grahams Island, Devils Lake: Trails open and in good condition.
Icelandic, Cavalier: Nearly a foot of snow last week and trails are now packed and groomed and in good condition. Some drifting in open areas.
Lake Metigoshe, Bottineau: Trails open and in good condition with more than 30 inches of snow.
Snowmobile North Dakota:
East-central (Cass & Richland counties): Fargo East, Fargo West, & Rural Cass South open with 5- to 11-inch base.
Lake Region (Nelson & Ramsey counties): Trail 4 closed but all other trails open with 4- to 6-inch base.
North-central (Benson, Pierce, Ramsey, McHenry & Towner counties): All trails open and groomed with 3- to 6-inch base.
Northeast (Cavalier, Pembina & Walsh counties): All trails except Cavalier Trail open with 3 to 6-inch base.
Peace Garden (Bottineau & Rolette counties): 4- to 6-inch snow depth with all trails except Trail 6 open and groomed.
Red River North (Pembina & Walsh counties): Trails CR4, CR11, 15, 29, 66, 81N, & 81S open with 3- to 5-inch base. Trails 9, 12, 17, & 18 closed.
Red River South (Grand Forks & Walsh counties): East & West loops open with 3- to 5-inch base. Alberta Clipper, Reynolds, & Turtle River trails will be groomed, weather permitting.
Sno Trails (Bottineau, McHenry, Renville & Ward counties): Burlington, Deering, Deering East, Foxholm, Granville, Minot, Surry, Surrey South, and Towner trails open with 3- to 5-inch snow depth. Glenburn, Kramer, & Velva trails closed.
Southern Valley (Richland County: All trails open with 4- to 6-inch base.
Cattail, Mayville-Portland, Sargent, Sheyenne Valley, & Missouri Valley trails remain closed.
Some trails could open, depending on conditions and weather.
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).