Fish Responsibly

By Doug Leier Food waste is a hot topic with an effort to raise awareness of the changing mindset from allowing food to rot, spoil or in some cases even just taking more than you need or will eat. For many here in the Midwest, it’s hard to understand a heritage dating back to our…

The Peluso Report: Fish Faster on Sakakawea

By Mike Peluso Fishing on Lake Sakakawea from a guide’s perspective is absolutely unreal! From a tournament angler’s point of view, maybe not so much. What do I mean when I say this? Well, fish 14 to 18 inches are extremely abundant and fairly easy to catch right now, making the lake great for guides,…

SEND Fishing Update: Zander Expand, Bluegill Boom?

By Nick Simonson High waters in southeastern North Dakota from the fall of 2019 have receded some during this summer’s hot and dry conditions, but lakes remain in good fishing shape throughout the district, and the bite has been solid on many, according to BJ Kratz, Southeast District Fisheries Supervisor for the North Dakota Game…

Kellen’s Call: ND Muskies, Walleyes Hitting Hard

By Kellen Latendresse These past two weeks have been packed for me, I had two open days from work and guiding, spending them on the water at lake with family. It felt kind of weird with no fishing rod in hand.  I’ve had everything from muskies, catfish, walleye and bass trips in the last 12…

Six Tips for New Hunters

By Hannah Hayes A big part of my job is encouraging folks to participate in outdoor recreation, particularly hunting. Whether that’s hunting for the first time, continuing the enjoyment of time spent afield, or diving back into a hobby left forgotten, my job is rewarding in so many ways. Something I enjoy the heck out…

Brad’s Bites: Current Key for Cats in Low Flows

By Brad Durick The low waters continue on the Red River and appear to have no end in sight. Fargo flow is now down to 133 cfs, Grand Forks is at 629 cfs and Drayton is at 746 cfs. For comparison, the lowest flow I have ever fished prior to this year on the Red…

Our Outdoors: On Edge

By Nick Simonson The haze of a hundred wildfires dimmed the light of the mid-July sun overhead on the afternoon fishing trip as I drifted along the breaks of a favorite rocky lake.  The orb’s all day orange glow made me uncomfortable as the effects of yet another heatwave crashing on the west drifted slowly…

New Hunting, Angling Laws Take Effect Aug. 1

By Doug Leier By Doug Leier Every other year in North Dakota, elected officials gather at the state capital to propose, review, debate and ultimately vote on legislation that will set the course for the state and its citizens. Some of these bills are also related to how the North Dakota Game and Fish Department…

Muskie Minute: Warm Water Muskie Moves

By Andrew Slette Warming midsummer water temperatures have the majority of muskies transitioning from open water basins to weed covered structure in Minnesota’s west central lakes country.  All our local lakes have water temperatures in the upper 70s or low 80s pushing the open water baitfish deeper and out of the muskies’ reach.  This puts…

The Peluso Report: Sak & Devils Lake Bites Still Hot

By Mike Peluso We are going to experience another hot stretch of weather here in the Dakotas this week and one thing is for sure, the fishing on both Lake Sakakawea and Devils Lake remain hot as well. One thing to note as the water temps continue to rise, the fish will begin to go…

The Double-Edged Sword of Hunting Technology

By John Bradley Open any hunting magazine and next to the photo of a world class buck or bull you will see an ad for the latest, greatest, hunting gadget – guaranteeing that if you buy it, you’ll punch your tag next fall.  From cellular trail cameras that send photos to your phone instantly when…

Bullinger Brothers Represent ND at HS Fishing Nationals

By Nick Simonson It was a long trip to Lake Hartwell near Anderson, S.C. for brothers Brandon and Logan Bullinger of Century High School in Bismarck, N.D., but the time and effort put in competitively fishing bass in the Student Angler Federation’s High School Fishing league (highschoolfishing.org) and a North Dakota state title earned them…

Our Outdoors: Turning Twenty

By Nick Simonson It was 20 years ago this summer I took a job in between college and law school as a part time reporter for my hometown newspaper, the Valley City Times-Record.  In fact, it’s a publication for which I still proudly write today, and I am happy and sometimes amazed that they’ve kept…

NDG&F Director on Career, Retirement

By Doug Leier After nearly 40 years with the North Dakota Game and Fish Department, the last 15 years serving as director, Terry Steinwand has decided to retire at the end of July. Terry on his career path to becoming Director. I started out as a Garrison Diversion fisheries biologist. I managed the canal lakes…

Brad’s Bites: Go Frozen for Hot Weather Cats

By Brad Durick The water continues to fall on the northern Red River. Everywhere is now flowing lower than I have ever seen. The catfish are in search of any current they can find, which in above dam areas is getting more and more difficult to locate. When you do find it, you generally get…

The Peluso Report: Sak Remains Strong

By Mike Peluso We have had some changes in weather here in North Dakota and a cold front that also brought in much needed moisture. So, what did this do to the fishing this week? Except for a few slower moments, walleye angling has remained good to excellent! Lake Sakakawea remains strong with lots of…

Old & New Plastics for Summertime Crappies

By Nick Simonson There are many options when it comes to catching crappies, most involving a small minnow.  Whether under a slip float or on a jig, live bait is king when summer slabs are feeding, but on some lakes, baitfish are prohibited, and in many cases, light tackle anglers enjoy the challenge of fishing…

Lining Things Up

By Nick Simonson The first thing I look at when inspecting a young angler’s reel is the type of line coming off of the spool.  Over the holiday, I had the opportunity to connect with my wife’s cousin’s kids and introduce them to my style of bass fishing.  While we had angled together a number…

Brad’s Bites: Post Spawn Pickup

By Brad Durick Catfishing on the Red River remains very good as the post spawn fish continue to feed and bulk back up. It seems fish can be caught about anyway you want to angle for them at this point in the season, and mid-river holes are the best bet right now when it comes…

Our Outdoors: Clear Fun

By Nick Simonson The rising sun heated the morning air like a fuse on the fireworks launched the night before and as it came up over the slightly rippled waters of the northern lake on Independence Day, the fishing exploded in the same fashion.  Along the inside turns of the reed beds, under the mats…

Zebra Mussels Found in Twin Lakes Near LaMoure

NDG&F Release The North Dakota Game and Fish Department has confirmed the presence of invasive zebra mussels in Twin Lakes, LaMoure County, after a local cabin owner reported adult mussels attached to a floating log over the weekend. Aquatic nuisance species coordinator Ben Holen said subsequent follow-up sampling found a few other zebra mussels attached…

The Peluso Report: Hot as a Firecracker

By Mike Peluso The fishing right now is just as hot as the temperatures! Some things have changed a little and some things have stayed the same. Lake Sakakawea is unreal right now! Tons of fish are being caught in that 15 to 18 inch range and some really nice sized fish are mixed in….

Second Hatch Hopes

By Nick Simonson While drought conditions persist across much of North Dakota, with severe levels in the west-central portion of the state around Lake Sakakawea, much of the state has received some badly needed rain which is not only good for foliage and farming, but hopefully this year’s crop of pheasant chicks as well.  While…

Kellen’s Call: Summer Spike

By Kellen Latendresse As this fishing report finds you, I hope you are enjoying time with your friends and family. Personally, I am torn. I’m torn between driving across the country to visit my wife’s family or staying behind to partake in some of the best fishing of the summer. As I have recently finished…

Our Outdoors: It’s Okay to Think About Hunting Now

By Nick Simonson I can’t help it.  My mindset has already shifted toward hunting, despite only being a week removed from the summer solstice, the July Fourth holiday not here yet and there being nearly a full three months of the season remaining. It happens every year about this time. I know it shouldn’t but…

Brad’s Bites: Catfish Action Up, Water Levels Down

By Brad Durick It’s safe to say the spawn is done and the catfish are feeding. There are many fish being caught all up and down the Red River. It appears the fish are moving to holes and more summer areas to take  up residence. Fish the top, middle and outer edges of holes. Wood…

Double Down on Boating Safety this Summer

By Doug Leier A reader emailed recently to suggest that I should focus less in my columns on safety, as “it takes the fun away from being outdoors.” I do always consider that “too much” factor when I write or talk about safety, but I’ve also seen enough injuries and dead bodies, especially early in…

Muskie Minute: Lakes Country Fish Turning On

By Andrew Slette Stable weather and water temps have the muskies very active and transitioning into their late spring patterns. The bite out on local lakes following the cold front a week ago has been phenomenal. This provided us with multiple fish most days and six muskies this past Friday. Casting and trolling have both…

Pheasant Crowing Counts Rise Slightly

NDG&F Release North Dakota’s spring pheasant population index is about the same as last year, according to the state Game and Fish Department’s 2021 spring crowing count survey. R.J. Gross, upland game management biologist, said the number of roosters heard crowing this spring was up about 3% statewide. “The statewide number might be a bit…

The Peluso Report: Still on the Road

By Mike Peluso Well, I’m pretty sure I completely jinxed myself with my last report talking about my boat puller “Old Blue.” Unfortunately, Old Blue is no longer with us today and I’m looking for a replacement. Thank goodness for my dad letting me borrow his vehicle until I can figure something out. What I…