Archive of Fishing reportsApril2012
Bobbers and leeches can be effective!
Posted: April 26, 2012
The most important factor right now when you fishing the shallows is to find warm water. Really watch your temp gauge and if you can find even a degree warmer in a bay, you may just find your honey hole!!
Good luck to all! Remember this time of year is big fish time. take a picture and fish for the future!!
This should be the year…
Posted: April 23, 2012
Courtesy of McQuoid’s Guide Service.
Experts Predict Excellent May Fishing on Devils Lake
Posted: April 19, 2012
For the first time in memory, two dramatic weather occurrences – no incoming water and early ice out – will produce “hot” May fishing in Devils Lake. North Dakota fishing experts and guides felt this historical spring will mean May 1 could start the best month of fishing on record.
Long-time guide Jason Feldner of Perch Eyes Guide Service (percheyes.com) said, “The May bite will be phenomenal.” Usually late May is the peak, but Feldner feels with water temperatures in the 50-degree range, the best bite will be underway by May Day. Guide and walleye champion Johnnie Candle (johnniecandle.com) said, “You never know what you’ll catch – walleyes, white bass, pike – but catch you will. Your arms will be tired at the end of the day, any day in May.”
Jason Mitchell, TV host and owner of Mitchell’s Guide Service (fishdevilslake.net) said, “Everything will be relating to shorelines in every part of the lake. Pick a bay and hit it. Find the warmest water and fish. Devils Lake will be a month ahead of schedule. This is the time.” Zippy Dahl, one of Mitchell’s 12 open water guides said, “This is a first for us with no run-off and the earliest ice-out I can remember. It’s a game-changer, because walleyes will stay home, not running to distant lakes to spawn.”
Dahl said this year the resident fish will be found in the main lake or any of the adjoining waters. The key will be water temperature. Walleyes have spread into all the connecting lakes of Devils Lake as the lake expanded from 40,000 acres 20 years ago to approximately 250,000 acres today. There are countless new bays and shorelines to fish. Dahl likes to fish with slip-bobbers or jigs early. “Get the bait in front of their noses and hang on,” he said.
Feldner said with the ice going out a month ahead of average he will fish with jigs or crankbaits. For jigs, he prefers a Fuzz-E-Grub tipped with a leech. He will be in shallow bays in 3 to 5 feet of water. He also likes to cast Lindy Shadlings on windswept shorelines with rock or sand bottom. He keeps the boat in 6 to 7 feet, and casts shallow, pausing his lures occasionally. He watches for following walleyes, and returns to the area if they’re not hitting on his first pass. “Walleyes and pike will be roaming together. Catch the pike, then come back and catch walleyes. I use a wire leader or pike can eat a lot of baits,” he said.
“The conditions will keep the fish in their normal spots, and all corners of Devils Lake will be good early,” Candle said. “Warming conditions trigger bug activity, which draws minnows, which bring walleyes to the shallows.” He recommends covering water, and moving until contacting fish. “Find a shoreline stretch with fish, and go back,” he said. His two tactics involve casting either lures or jigs. He has many Husky Jerks, Rapala X-Raps and shallow Shad Raps ready for action. When jigging, the number one soft plastic for Candle is the 3-inch pearl or firetiger Berkley Ripple Shad on a 1/16th or 1/8th ounce jig.
“Fish until you find ‘em,” says Mitchell. His hotspots will be new back bays which will be over recently flooded cattail sloughs. If emerging cabbage weeds, pencil reeds or flooded cattails are present, he knows walleyes are lurking there. One of the benefits of no run-off is that the lake “greens-up” earlier due to algae growth, and this produces perfect conditions for shallow fishing. “You could pick 15 fish off a spot instead of three,” he said. “The boat won’t spook them, and they don’t scatter as much.”
Mitchell covers water with Salmo Hornets or Shad Raps to locate fish. If fish hit or follow with few hook-ups, he switches to slip-bobbers. “I really like to swim jigs – not on the bottom – but reeled slow. Northland Mimic Minnows, Trigger-X and Mister Twisters really produce,” he said.
May fishing on Devils Lake, according to the experts, is shaping up to be one of the best in history. “Jump-start your fishing season with us,” Candle said. For information on Devils Lake conditions, ramps (all launch ramps on Devils Lake are open this season), activities, guides, tournaments, lodging, resorts and restaurants, check www.devilslakend.com, or call 1-800-233-8048..........................................................................................................................................................
Been catching most of our fish on…
Posted: April 17, 2012
Well mother nature kind of showed us who’s boss the past ten days. High winds, rain, and frigid temperatures took away a lot of desire to go fishing lately. We were able to sneak out on 2 of the nice days we had and we did catch some dandy fish. The walleye fishing was by no means on fire but the size was incredible. When you are catching only 1,2, or 3 an hour that sounds slow but when you see the size of them it definitely encourages your patience to kick in.
We have been catching most of our fish on slip bobbers. We are just anchoring along shorelines in 8 feet of water and casting our bobbers into the shallows. Plain hook and a leech have been the best. We also did catch some fish casting mimic minnows with the paddle tails on a slow to medium retrieve. The fish have been scattered. It seems like nothing, nothing, nothing and then boom! You catch 2.
The forecast the rest of this weeks into next looks very much improved. Mostly highs of 50s to 60s with light winds. Next Monday it is supposed to get up to 73 degrees! Now that sounds a little more like it! This should really warm up the shallows and give us some excellent fishing. We do have room if you want to get an early trip in, we would be happy to take you!
Good Luck Fishing Everybody!
Shore anglers are doing fair to good!
Posted: April 13, 2012
Fishing has been hampered with tons of wind the last 10 days. rain today, but looks like a good day tomorrow. Not many folks out with boats, but shore anglers are doing fair to good. My guess is the Pike are done spawning and the Walleyes are just starting or part way through. Our first guided crew is out today with guide Nick. We also have a crew in taking advantage of our last snow geese flocks in the area. Boat ramp has been in for a couple of weeks and we now have our service and fuel docks in. All marina docks are ready to go. Water should be on in the campground in 2 weeks or earlier if possible. Woodland Resort is nearly 100% ready for summer. Still have a few good projects to finish, but it is sure nice to be this far, this early!
Pike are really heating up….
Posted: April 11, 2012
Well the ice left us one month earlier than last year. WOW! the pike have spawned out and the walleyes should start around the week of the 20th. With the early ice out I predict that we are going to have a great May for fishing unlike the last two years where it was hit and miss. We have been out a few times for the pre-spawn bite and it has been good. Some big females and some nice eater males. The shore fishing has been hit and miss from what I hear but pretty good. Channel A and the coulee bridges along with church’s ferry have been the best. I hear since the pike have spawned they are really heating up. I will get back to fishing and get you guys another report soon.
There are days you have to really work at it…
Posted: April 9, 2012
There are fish biting, but there are days you have to really work at it. We are in a period of lots of transitions and the best thing that can happen is for the water to continue to warm and the spawn to occur, from there the fish really move shallow and the fishing really takes off!
For best action fish current areas with jigs and minnows. Vertical jigging has been the best for us. Some days are better in the current and others are better just off of it. We have caught a few fish in the back bays retrieving jigs and plastics as well. There are some fish being caught on the Sheyenne River, best areas are below dams or other current areas.
We have been booking many groups for late April and May. Look for the fishing to be fantastic! If you are interested in a trip, give a call and we will make it happen!
Friday, April 6: The ice is off on Devils Lake and the fish are hungry!
Posted: April 6, 2012
The ice is off Devils Lake and the fish are hungry!!! There has been some pretty impressive catches of walleyes and northern pike the past 10 days on Devils Lake. The water temperatures are still pretty cold in the low to mid 40s but fishing both fishing from shore and jigging from boats have proven to be very successful.
We would like to thank all of you that practice catch and release on some of these fish this time of year. It is no secret that this time of year produces a lot of females that are full of eggs and ready to spawn. These are the same fish that provide us with a lake full of walleye and northern pike in the near future. We would like to remind everyone of that and we want to encourage everyone to practice common sense catch and release.
This is some of the earliest spring fishing we have ever had on Devils Lake. The weather has been beautiful so far and with this much sunshine we are bound to experience some warmer water temps right around the corner. If you are interested in getting a jump on everyone and want to sneak in an April trip, we are ready to take you fishing and would love to have you!
Fishing report courtesy of Zippy Dahl and Mitchell’s Guide Service.........................................................................................................................................................
Shore fishing people are catching lots of…
Fishing on the lake has been fair. Shore fishing people are catching lots of pike mixed in with a few walleyes. Lack of running water this year has made the spawn bite for walleyes hit and miss. One day its good the next day its slow. Try any of the spawing areas from the past…six mile…mauvis bridge..channel A and all the culverts north of Devils Lake. People who are in the boat are having better success for Walleyes. Jigging at the bridges and taking soft baits pitching them into the cat tails working them slow. Jig and minnow at the bridge. Good luck and good fishing.
Courtesy of Ed’s Bait Shop..........................................................................................................................................................
Game and Fish Sponsors Earth Day Project
Posted: April 3, 2012
The North Dakota Game and Fish Department is once again celebrating Earth Day by sponsoring youth clean-up days on public-owned or managed lands in April and May.
Each member of a school, Girl Scout, Boy Scout, 4-H club or youth organization who participates in cleaning up public lands during April and May will receive a specifically designed conservation patch.
Last winter the Game and Fish Department sponsored a contest for students ages 6-18 to design a North Dakota Earth Day Patch. Winners receiving a pair of Nikon 8×40 binoculars in the three age categories were Maddie Hosek of Bismarck (6-9), Enya Agard of Selfridge (10-13), and Sarah Morris of Regan (14-18). Hosek’s design was chosen the contest winner, and will be used on this year’s Earth Day patch.
Groups participating in the Earth Day project are encouraged to take the following precautions to ensure safety: keep young people away from highways, lakes and rivers; and only allow older participants to pick up broken glass.
Interested participants are asked to contact Pat Lothspeich at 328-6332 to receive a reporting form for their project..........................................................................................................................................................