Archive of Fishing reports

March2014

Still Plenty of Ice!!

Posted: March 27, 2014

Well it’s been a very good week of fishing but we did have some tough days too where it was tough to get perch to bite. These were mainly due to some of the fronts that hit us especially last weekend. For the most part, we have still been catching most of our perch in deep water. Some places we have been have been 29ft, some 39 ft, and some places as deep as 52 feet of water. We had one of our best days of the year where every group that was with us enjoyed catching their limits and then we went to the same spot the next day and we were hard pressed to even mark fish. But that’s what near blizzard conditions and a cold front can do.

CURRENT ICE CONDITIONS:

We have been rather lucky the past 10 days. For a while we had warm temps that melted all our snow on the lake. We went through a period of time where we had water on the ice and then Mother Nature gave us some cold temps that refroze everything and healed even the accesses. So as I write this report, we are still driving our trucks on the lake, we are still drilling through 40 plus inches of ice and we are still able to safely travel every where we want to go. The bridge areas are opening up and you need to stay away from them. Bring your ice cleats and your auger extensions or you may find yourself flat on your behind with no water in your hole.

The end of our season is near. Our last day of guiding for the Perch Patrol is April 1st. We do realize the opportunity to ice fish on Devils Lake will go on in to April. But we have to be honest, this crew has worked long and hard this winter without many days off and there comes a point in time where everyone is starting to feel the burn out taking over.

Have a great week everybody and be safe out there!

Courtesy of Perch Patrol

 

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Ice Access Update; Lake Access south of Pop’s Bar on East Devils Lake

Posted: March 21, 2014

Ice access update: the access south of Pop’s Bar; the east peninsula between the storm ponds and Merten’s farm is unsafe due to water being pumped over the ice from the pumping station. Please use caution towards the end of this ice fishing season.

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Boat Landing Blocked Off

Posted:

Henegar Boat Landing will be blocked off today for safety reasons.

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‘Very Good’ Devils Lake Winter Ice Fishing Set to Change Seasons: Spring is Coming

Posted: March 20, 2014

AlFreidig_small

Devils Lake fishing runs 12 months of the year – the only difference being the amount of clothing a person needs. Anglers are transitioning now from one of the best winter ice fishing seasons to what experts predict as a stellar spring “bite,” on one of North Dakota’s jewels.

Todd Caspers, Devils Lake area fisheries biologist said creel surveys this winter indicate a very good season. He said, “Depending on the March weather and continued good lake drive-ability, if the perch continue biting like they have been, we could approach harvest numbers of the early 2000’s.” Like so many winter-weary anglers, Caspers is looking forward to spring fishing. “We will probably be ice fishing well into April, but everybody is ready for open water.”

The biologist said last summer produced a good walleye and perch bite; the good fishing continued all winter and he anticipates another good walleye and perhaps perch spring and summer. “Walleye populations are at very good levels with lots of keeper-size fish in the lake,” he said. “Pike are under-utilized and anglers should consider taking home limits.” Research shows many pike between 20 and 30 inches with top-end pike in excess of 40 inches.

Early open water depends on Mother Nature, but predictions from the guy with his finger on the pulse of flowing water, Jeff Frith said, “Usually, ice-off is about the third week of April, but based on the ‘cool’ National Weather Service forecast plus 40-inches of ice, it will likely be later this year,” the manager of the Devils Lake Basin Joint Water Resources board said. The snow level is normal to slightly below normal, and his best guess is for a nominal rise in water levels of 12 to 18 inches and a light in-flow. “But, we know how March and April can be here in North Dakota,” he said. Boaters will again be able to travel under all bridges in 2014.

Lake observer and avid Devils Lake angler Al Freidig counts the first open water as his favorite time to be on the lake. Despite the anticipation, he figures it will probably occur towards the end of April. Pike will show up first in current areas, eventually running to the ends of Six-Mile and Pelican Bays. Walleyes will not be far behind, and their movements will stretch into early May. “All about the same time, incoming water creates openings by bridges and culverts. Fishermen on foot have a bonanza there,” he said. “Pike and walleyes travel 40 miles up the coulee system to reach their spawning destinations, creating dozens of shoreline hot spots to ambush them.”

Caspers enjoys early season in the Six-Mile Bay Channel A and along Highway 19 where the road intersects twice with the lake. “These current areas are tops, and anglers know it,” he said.

Go to www.devilslakend.com for a map of the nine convenient public accesses. The 20 x 32 fish-cleaning station located next door to Ed’s Bait Shop (on Hwy 20 south of the City of Devils Lake), like the Devils Lake fishing season, is open all year. The heated (and A/C) building has two grinders, a clean-up sink, regular and handicapped bathrooms, and is free to the public.

Devils Lake fishing guides target perch, walleyes, white bass and pike. To contact guides and for the latest lake, ramp and ice conditions, fishing reports, lodging, activities, restaurants, tournament news and resorts, check www.devilslakend.com, or call 701-662-4903. The 38th Devils Lake Chamber Fishing Tournament is June 27-28, with cash awards for walleyes, pike, white bass and perch.

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Perch Patrol Fishing Report

Posted: March 17, 2014

Sorry for the delayed report, things have been crazy busy around here. Perch fishing for guests of the Perch Patrol continue to be “off the charts”. Every day we seem to find more and more perch. Some days they are big schools, some days they are small tight schools, and some days they are fast moving schools that are hard keep up with. It sure is fun when there are so many perch on your screen and they are literally coming out of the six foot auto zoom on the Vexilars. These are good times!

The ice conditions continue to be very good. We did have about 3 days over the 40 degree mark and that did melt most of our snow that we had. We did have a couple of days with quite a bit of water on the ice but the cold front that hit us over the weekend re-froze most of it by now. It is very slippery out there and we would like to tell all of our guests that are coming these last two weeks of March, please bring cleats.

Our ice is still 40 plus inches thick and we are still driving our trucks. Looking at the 10 day forecast, we should be able to keep driving as long as the accesses stay in good shape.

Our schedule for March has been sold out for quite a while now and we have been asked if we are going to continue guiding in April. We so far have not scheduled anything in April and if we decide to do so I will definitely be posting it on our report page and our Facebook page.

We want to see what the forecast is and the ice conditions are in about a week to ten days from now before we schedule anything in April. We also need to judge how much gas our guides have left in the tank as well. This crew has been running hard since December 15th without many days off. We will keep you posted when we make our decision.

Have a great week everybody!

Courtesy of Perch Patrol

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Perch Fishing Remains Very Good!

Posted: March 13, 2014

Perch and walleyes are still cooperating! Seems like the bite for perch is better in the 30-45 depth, and the majority of our walleyes have been in the shallower water(12-20ft).
Same lures that we have used all winter are still producing, as for bait mix it up between waxies,spikes,minnows, or minnow heads.
Ice is still good but make sure you are extra careful near the edges,cracks,current areas,etc…this is a special time of year, get out and enjoy it!!
Courtesy of  Bry’s Guide Service
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Fishing Good to Excellent!

Posted: March 12, 2014

Sorry to all of you for my lack of keeping everyone in the loop on the fishing front. I will do my best to be a little more current. Well….Here we go! Fishing has been good to excellent for the most part with about 7 days being fair since my last report. We have been taking clients all over the lake finding the active schools of perch has been a bit of a challenge but when we do find them the hungry jumbo’s sure fill a 5 gallon bucket fast. The same depths of 20-50ft has worked well and somedays the fish are active and other days we need to finesse them by using a vertical presentation of a Hali tipped with a waxie and slowing down the action to a standstill. Understanding what they want and how they want it either vertical or a horizontal presentation is critical to your success. We have a 200,000 acre lake and people need to understand that we are trying to fish it thru a 8″ hole. Which leaves me a question to ask all of you… Hire a guide or not? We are on the lake every day and we have the knowledge to find them what they are biting on and what we are doing to get the lookers into tablefare!! I will post daily reports of FB so friend me so you can see what we are catching each day. As far as ice thickness it is all of 40″ and an extentsion is needed. I will be assessing the conditions daily as our weather warms the conditions change and by the 25th of March I will make a decision for the 1st week in Aprils guiding schedule. I do have a few days open during the week to take a group out but all weekends are full. If you would like to discuss ice fishing or getting ready to plan a summer vacation, I would be happy to discuss what we have to offer. Till Next Time…Tight Lines! John

Courtesy of Big John’s Guide Service

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Perch Still Biting

Posted: March 11, 2014

The perch fishing still remains excellent on Devils Lake for guests of the Perch Patrol. Not every group gets their limit every day but these days a lot of groups do. A day with the Perch Patrol isn’t always about getting limits of perch. It’s about the experience, the adventure, the learning and most of all having a fun day on the ice. This season is by far one of the most successful perch catching seasons in our history and the number of clients that are going home “happy” has never been higher.

This past week we have had some interesting weather. We have had 25 below zero highs, we had winds that gusted 40 mph, and today we had a little rain. Not every minute of every day do we hammer perch but when the sun is shining usually so is the perch fishing.

Our best success has been dangling a couple of waxies or a minnow head on either Hali’s or the new speed spoon from Clam outdoors tackle lineup. Not only do these lures load the tip of the rod to enable us to feel the light bites, but they travel the water column quickly so we can get back down to the bottom and catch another one. If it takes forever to get your bait to the bottom The perch easily give up and move on. So there is even a little tip for everyone.

The forecast is showing some temps in our ten-day that kind of remind a guy of spring. There is lots of mid 20s and 30s heading our way. This should keep the fish biting.

All of the remaining dates in March are now sold out and for that we thank all of you that reserved some dates with us and we look forward to fishing with you.

Have a great week everybody!

Courtesy of Perch Patrol

 

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Lake Access Point to be Cleared

Posted: March 5, 2014

County Road 1 Landing will be cleared for lake access tomorrow, March 6th.  Access our map to find locations.

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