We want to be able to provide a safe experience for everyone.
The Perch Patrol Guide Service has suspended operations until Tuesday, January 18th. On Sunday January 8th we had a terrible accident that has our guide staff pretty shaken up right now. One of our guides had his 4 wheel drive crew cab truck go through the ice and it is currently sitting on the bottom of Devils Lake in Fort Totten Bay. Thank God nobody was injured and everyone was able to escape the vehicle before it went through the ice but the whole experience has been an eye opener for us. This has never happened in the 16 years of the Perch Patrol history and do not want this to ever happen again.
We have a tremendous amount of snow cover on Devils Lake and it is creating problems for us. Not only does it hamper our ability to get around, it insulates the ice and creates slush issues. This particular incident happened on a trail that a crack that formed overnight ran along side. The front tire of the vehicle fell through the crack and forced a chunk of ice to break off. The ice was 18 inches thick on the spot where this happened and we believe the crack had more to do with the cause of this than anything.
We want to error on the side of safety and are in the process of postponing all guide trips until this next cold front passes through this weekend. The forecast is calling for 15 to 25 below zero temperatures beginning on Friday and with these cold temps the ice will not only thicken but also some of the slush under the snow will be given a chance to heal up.
The walleye fishing has started to pick up this past week but we have had some pretty major cold fronts this past weekend that slowed things up a bit. On Friday the wind blew 40 miles per hour and it blew around the snow making it tough to see. Saturday fishing was considerably better and we did have some groups limit out on walleyes.
We are very sorry for the inconvenience that this suspension of operations may cause all of the customers that we had scheduled and want to thank all of you for understanding. We want to be able to provide a safe experience for everyone and it is way better to be safe than to take any chances.
Courtesy of Perch Patrol Guide Service