Dakota Recreation Report

Outdoor notes

Aug. 29: Archery deer and mountain lion seasons open.

Sept. 1: Dove season opens.

Sept. 3: Fall turkey season applications due.

Sept. 4: 8th Annual Outdoor Youth Festival, 5:30 p.m., N.D. State Fairgrounds Game and Fish Pond.


Saturday: Lake Audubon, Totten Trail; Lake Sakakawea, Sakakawea State Park.


Devils Lake elevation, Aug. 20: 1,452.91 feet above mean sea level.

Stump Lake elevation: 1,452.85 feet.

Lake Sakakawea elevation: 1,845.02 feet; 26,000 cubic feet per second average (CFS) Garrison Dam daily releases.

N.D. Game & Fish Dept. Dist. game wardens: East end of Lake Sakakawea and Missouri River slow for walleye. Lake Audubon fair for walleye. Devils Lake continues producing good numbers of walleye with some bigger fish now showing up.

Beulah, Dakota Waters, Lake Sakakawea: Inconsistent weather patterns slowing walleye success. Best activity remains on nightcrawlers and leeches but try deeper in 25 to 30 feet west of the resort.

Bottineau, Four Seasons, Lake Metigoshe: Continued bluegill success along the weed edges and off the docks. Try North Lake for an occasional nice-sized walleye.

Bottineau, Lake Metigoshe State Park, Lake Metigoshe: Not many people on the lake recently.

Coleharbor, Totten Trail, Lakes Audubon and Sakakawea: Lake Audubon fair to good for walleye in 13 to 30 feet using spinners and bottom bouncers with nightcrawlers. Also try minnows. Best success on Lake Sakakawea remains west around Indian Hills.

Devils Lake, Ed’s Bait, Devils Lake: Continued good small walleye success using spinners with leeches or nightcrawlers in 12 to 18 feet. Work points, ridges, or old roadbeds throughout much of lake. Try the Golden Highway using vertical jigs after locating fish. Also try shallow with crankbaits or plastics for bigger fish, although it’s a case of quality more so than quantity in the shallows.

Devils Lake, Woodland Resort, Devils Lake: Continued good walleye success in 10 to 25 feet in the weed beds with bigger fish still coming out of Pelican Lake and the Minnewaukan Flats. Try spinners and bottom bouncers. Lots of small fish with bigger fish coming from the west end.

Dickinson, Andrus Outdoors, Lake Sakakawea/area lakes: West side of Lake Sakakawea good for small walleye in 17 to 20 feet. Try nightcrawlers with Lindy rigs around Independence Point along with McKenzie, Mossett, and Skunk bays.

Foxholm, Upper Souris NWR, Lake Darling: Fair to good perch and walleye success throughout much of the lake. Try jigs and minnows or spinners with nightcrawlers. Outlet Fishing Area producing a few pike.

Garrison, Cenex Bait and Tackle, Lakes Audubon and Sakakawea: Improving walleye success on the east end of Lake Sakakawea using a variety of presentations in 20 feet. Try Garrison Bay to the west along main lake points. Work deeper around Indian Hills. Lake Audubon remains fair for small walleye.

Garrison, Indian Hills Resort, Lake Sakakawea, Good Bear Bay: Try 25 to 35 feet using spinners and bottom bouncers with nightcrawlers for walleye. Good numbers of small fish but some nice-sized ones are mixed in. Work either the north or south shore west of the resort with good success around Deepwater Bay. Slower success with crankbaits.

Garrison, 6-Mile Bait and Tackle, Lakes Audubon and Sakakawea: Inconsistent weather patterns creating inconsistent success on Lake Sakakawea and Lake Audubon.

Mandan, Southside MVP, Missouri River/area lakes: Missouri River is muddying up with most activity still farther south around Cattail Bay, Langeliers, and the State Line on Lake Oahe. Limited reports from small area lakes.

Mandaree, McKenzie Bay Marina, Lake Sakakawea, Little Missouri Arm: Anglers working harder for walleye but try the main lake in deeper water. Resort closes after Sept. 1.

New Town, Scenic 23, Lake Sakakawea: Van Hook Arm slowed for walleye. Try working deeper with slower presentations.

New Town, Van Hook Bait and Tackle, Lake Sakakawea, Van Hook Arm: Walleye success slowed somewhat. Try switching to minnows and working deeper water in the Van Hook Arm.

Pick City, Scott’s Bait and Tackle, Lake Sakakawea/Missouri River: Missouri River remains slow for walleye from boat and shore. Catfish remain active in the chutes, however, with a smattering of trout, salmon, and pike. Lake Sakakawea slow on the east end for walleye with better success at Douglas Bay. Try 6 to 7 feet in the weeds or 14 to 28 feet along drop-offs around smelt schools. Try Lindy rigs or spinners with bottom bouncers or crankbaits. OK salmon success but it’s more quality than quantity with some fish up to 13 pounds. Try flashers and squids or flies along Government or Pochant bays in 60 to 80 feet over 120 feet and deeper. Lake Audubon continues producing eater-sized walleye using spinners and bottom bouncers with nightcrawlers.

Ruthville, Ruthville Store, Lake Darling and area lakes: Continued walleye success around Grano and the bridges on Lake Darling.

Williston, Scenic Sports, Lake Sakakawea/Missouri River/area lakes: Improving walleye success around Lund’s Landing on Lake Sakakawea. Try the pump house on the river for sauger. Blacktail Dam fair for a mix of smaller walleye with some perch and pike mixed in.

Gauge height and streamflow

Des Lacs River, Foxholm: River stage, 5.8 feet; streamflow, 16 CFS.

Little Missouri River, Long X Bridge: River stage, 1.23 feet; streamflow, 926 CFS.

Missouri River, Williston: River stage, 16.69 feet.

Missouri River, Stanton: River stage, 9.72 feet.

Souris River, Foxholm: River stage, 7.58 feet; streamflow, 341 CFS.

Souris River, Minot: River stage, 5.96 feet; streamflow, 341 CFS.

Yellowstone River, Sidney, Mont.: River stage, 5.23 feet; streamflow, 8,260 CFS.


Early Canada goose: A few hunters are out in parts of the state but lack of harvest limits access.

Numbers to know

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

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

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Bismarck, website: (www.fws.gov/