You are invited to experience Lake Sakakawea's famous Walleye, Northern Pike, Small Mouth Bass, and Salmon fishing. Maybe hunting Pheasants or Waterfowl is your game? You will find it all at Indian Hills Resort and Campground. We offer a variety of Camping and Lodging services from rustic Log Camping Cabins, Tent Camping and RV sites, to fully modern Lodging in the Condos or Arrowhead Lodge.
June 13th 2018
Fish kill confirmed in upper Lake Sak
A fish kill affecting adult rainbow smelt is ongoing in portions of the upper half of Lake Sakakawea, the North Dakota Game and Fish Department said recently.
The cause of the die-off has been documented in the state numerous times in the past, said Dave Fryda, Missouri River System fisheries supervisor for the North Dakota Game and Fish Department.
"The vast majority of the dead and dying smelt have physical signs of Columnaris bacteria," said Fryda, who mentioned dead and dying smelt have been observed from Four Bears Bridge to about the Little Missouri River Arm, including the Van Hook Arm of Lake Sakakawea. In addition, he said there likely are some in other areas.
Columnaris bacteria are present in all water bodies, and outbreaks typically occur when rapid water temperature changes occur at a time when the fish are stressed, such as after spawning.
"The smelt recently spawned in Lake Sakakawea, and were recovering from that stress when we experienced very high temperatures which boosted the water temperature in the shallow bays where the smelt spawned," Fryda said.
Smelt affected by Columnaris often develop visible skin irritations that have the appearance of fuzz or mold. Although there is no known cause for concern when in physical contact with these fish, Game and Fish suggests people leave the fish alone.
Lake Sakakawea had a similar smelt die-off in 2016, Fryda said, and in other instances in the past when the overall smelt population was very high. He said the current smelt population is the highest it's been for decades, so that is likely part of the reason the bacteria has spread over such a wide area.
The effects on the population won't be known until later this summer when fisheries crews assess the adult smelt population.
"Although the visible impression left by the dead smelt has anglers concerned, the overall impact of this year's die-off will likely be minimal," Fryda said. "With a population estimate approaching 200 million smelt in 2017, a high abundance of healthy smelt remains in the lake."
June 7th 2018
*Indian Hills Resort: Good news, anglers - fish are finally starting to bite closer and closer to the Hills with improving walleye success around Deepwater Bay. Look for success to continue moving east as water temperatures warm. Try 14 feet with jigs and minnows with some success starting with nightcrawlers.
*Van Hook Arm: The Van Hook Arm is starting to show some walleye success, especially along the west side of the Arm including Pouch Point and Little Field Bay. Look for success in the shallows soon. Try a variety of presentations and depths working from shallow out to 30 feet. The river portion of the lake remains good for walleye, as well.
*Garrison: Anglers are enjoying an improving bite on Lake Sakakawea’s east end for a mix of species, including walleye, bass, and pike with some salmon in the shallows. Move around and mix up depths and presentations from shallow in 3 feet out to 20 feet.
*Pick City: There are somewhat improving walleye reports from Lake Sakakawea around Douglas Bay along with a few walleye now showing up along the south shore. Try casting jigs towards the shore in shallow water or pulling crankbaits in 30 feet. Anglers are also enjoying continued pike success.
*South shore: Last weekend’s weather fronts and storms made walleye success difficult during the week along the south shore. The better success remains west with some improving walleye success around Douglas Bay on the north shore. Work shallow.
North Dakota Rivers Report, featuring Lake Sakakawea’s two major tributaries:
*Missouri River: Garrison Dam’s average daily releases have increased to 42,000 cubic feet per second (CFS) with an elevation of Lake Sakakawea at 1,848.31 feet above mean sea level. The lake is projected to reach and exceed full pool of 1,850 feet with above average mountain runoff coming into the river system.
*Little Missouri River, Long X Bridge: The streamflow average is 295 CFS while river stage is 0.21 feet.
*Yellowstone River, Sidney, Mont.: The Yellowstone’s river stage is 16.06 feet while flows are running 69,000 CFS, a decrease from earlier in the week.
June 1st 2018