Dakota Recreation Report

Outdoor notes

Wednesday: Unit 4A pronghorn applications due.

Aug. 9: Fall crow season opens.

Aug. 13: Swan applications due.


Saturday-Sunday: Lake Sakakawea, Indian Hills Resort.

Saturday: Lake Sakakawea, Dakota Waters Resort; Devils Lake.

Aug. 9: Devils Lake, Creel Bay.

Aug. 12: Stump Lake.


Devils Lake elevation, July 30: 1,453.11 feet above mean sea level.

Stump Lake elevation: 1,453.27 feet.

Lake Sakakawea elevation: 1,846.27 feet; 28,000 cubic feet per second average (CFS) Garrison Dam daily releases.

N.D. Game & Fish Dept. Dist. game wardens: No reports from area lakes and Devils Lake. East end of the Lake Sakakawea is hit-and-miss.

Beulah, Dakota Waters, Lake Sakakawea: Try the north side of Lake Sakakawea for bigger fish, including Nishu Bay, but it’s a matter of quality over quantity. Better numbers are coming from Beaver Bay but fish smaller.

Bismarck, Dakota Tackle, Missouri River/area lakes: Lake Audubon remains steady for walleye. No salmon success yet from Lake Sakakawea but some anglers are working on the east end along the Riverdale Bluffs and face of the dam. Missouri River producing activity south on Lake Oahe around Langeliers Bay or north to the tailrace. Try crankbaits or slow live bait presentation with nightcrawlers.

Bottineau, Four Seasons, Lake Metigoshe: Bluegill success remains good. Walleye activity slowed. Try the evening hours.

Bottineau, Lake Metigoshe State Park, Lake Metigoshe: Continued good bluegill activity with best success in the evening and towards dark.

Devils Lake, Ed’s Bait, Devils Lake: Continued good for walleye. Work structured areas in 8 to 25 feet using spinners and bottom bouncers with leeches or nightcrawlers. Try Pelican Lake, Minnewaukan Flats, Main Bay, or any areas with structure.

Devils Lake, Woodland Resort, Devils Lake: Continued good for small walleye. Sort through for keepers and work Lake Irvine or Pelican Lake for bigger fish. Try spinners and bottom bouncers with nightcrawlers in 15 to 20 feet. Some improving success with leeches. Also try jigs. Generally, most of the lake is producing success.

Dickinson, Andrus Outdoors, Lake Sakakawea/area lakes: Lake Sakakawea remains fair to good around McKenzie and Skunk bays in 17 to 20 feet for small walleye. Work shallower in 5 to 7 feet for bigger 2- to 4-pound fish. Try Lindy rigs or spinners and nightcrawlers with leeches or nightcrawlers.

Garrison, Cenex Bait & Tackle, Lakes Audubon and Sakakawea: Continued fair for small walleye in 9 to 22 feet using a variety of presentations. Move around. Lake Audubon also producing small walleye working outside of weed beds.

Garrison, Indian Hills Resort, Lake Sakakawea, Good Bear Bay: Improving walleye activity with some success starting around the flats in 17 to 19 feet using spinners with nightcrawlers. Also try crankbaits. Good numbers of small fish but sort through for the keepers.

Garrison, 6-Mile Bait & Tackle, Lakes Audubon & Sakakawea: Work the back bays out to main lake structure on Lake Sakakawea for walleye. Try pitching jigs and leeches into the shallows or Lindy rigs with bottom bouncers and leeches in deeper water. Lake Audubon remains fair for walleye in 15 to 25 feet using spinners or nightcrawlers or leeches working main lake structure. Limited reports from the Missouri River.

Mandan, Southside MVP, Missouri River/area lakes: Walleye slowed from Fort Rice to the south on Lake Oahe. No reports from small area lakes.

Mandaree, McKenzie Bay Marina, Lake Sakakawea, Little Missouri Arm: Continued walleye activity around the deeper water at the mouth of the Little Missouri Arm.

New Town, Scenic 23, Lake Sakakawea: Fair to good walleye success throughout much of the Arm. Try spinners and nightcrawlers throughout the north end in the shallows.

New Town, Van Hook Bait & Tackle, Lake Sakakawea, Van Hook Arm: Continued fair to good walleye success in the Van Hook Arm with the bite switching to nightcrawlers or leeches. Try the northwest end of the Arm.

Pick City, Scott’s Bait & Tackle, Lake Sakakawea/Missouri River: Inconsistent weather is keeping overall Missouri River success slow. The tailrace continues producing some catfish during the day with a few trout mixed in. Try nightcrawlers with Lindy rigs. Occasional walleye from shore at night. Overall success is somewhat slow, however. Lake Sakakawea still producing walleye along the shore in 6 to 7 feet using jigs along weed beds. Work crankbaits in 14 to 25 feet but move around to find active fish. Some smallmouth bass and pike from shore with limited walleye success from shore.

Ruthville, Ruthville Store, Lake Darling & area lakes: Continued fair success on Lake Darling with most activity around Grano.

Williston, Scenic Sports, Lake Sakakawea/Missouri River/area lakes: Little Muddy and the confluence of the Missouri and Yellowstone rivers producing catfish. White Earth Bay remains fair for walleye on Lake Sakakawea with some slight improvement around Lund’s Landing. Blacktail Dam continues producing a mix of panfish species.

River height, streamflow

Des Lacs River, Foxholm: River stage, 6.42 feet; streamflow, 46 CFS.

Little Missouri River, Long X Bridge: Streamflow, 133 CFS.

Missouri River, Williston: River stage, 18.03 feet.

Missouri River, Stanton: River stage, 9.95 feet.

Souris River, Foxholm: River stage, 7.56 feet; streamflow, 327 CFS.

Souris River, Minot: River stage, 6.19 feet; streamflow, 458 CFS.

Yellowstone River, Sidney, Mont.: River stage, 6.4 feet; streamflow, 12,700 CFS.

Numbers to know

N.D. Game and Fish Dept., main Bismarck office: 328-6300, website: (

Report All Poachers: (800) 472-2121 or (701) 328-9921.

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