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Fishing Line, Nov. 10

Fishing Line pic

With mid-November rapidly approaching, and faint signs of the ice fishing season slowly taking shape, prospects of an active fall fishing bite had been disappointing as has angler interest.

Pinning blame, however, is somewhat elusive. Though if fish have donned late season fishing bags, have done so very discretely, area fishermen haven’t contributed much either having been largely inactive for the past month or so.

The lack of participation this fall is likely due to an inconsistent weather pattern—high winds are on tap thru the weekend—coupled with the usual flurry of fall school activities. And a commitment by outdoor sports enthusiasts to garner their share of the 1.2 million pheasants harvested in South Dakota annually.

Add to that, a deer hunting season in full swing in the Black Hills and a full West River season commencing on Saturday.

Nonetheless, for those anglers who choose to brave the elements in the days ahead, here are some spots of possible interest.

And lastly though most importantly, a salute to all Veterans on their special day on Thursday.

Angostura Reservoir: The few anglers out have been catching a few walleye—jigging with minnows--though mostly in the “nothing to write home about’ category. Crappie remain active in a variety of locations particularly around tires near marina.

Belle Fourche Reservoir (Orman): Walleye activity remains steady most days with catches of lots of overs mixed with a few slots and fewer unders. Thus, volume hasn’t been a problem though finding keepers has. Buck tail jigs and minnows have been working best. Crappie bite near the dam. Lake is at 48 percent capacity.

Black Hills Fly Fishing: Anglers looking for some good trout fishing in easily accessible locations need look no farther than area streams particularly Rapid Creek. Cooler weather has narrowed the opportunity window to between noon and 3 p.m. however. Subsurface with nymphs and streamers is working best. Also, Blue Winged Olive hatches from mid-morning to mid-afternoon could spur dry fly fishing interest.

Deerfield Lake: No reports received this week. Nonetheless, small perch are probably still feeding lured most often by a small jig with either waxworm or minnow. Trout likely active as well.

Keyhole Reservoir: An angler reported a catch of ten nice walleyes last week. Fish were in shallow water and responding to a jig and minnow. Fishing traffic is pretty light this time of year.

Pactola Reservoir: Northern pike activity has reportedly picked up steam lately. Fish have been hitting on creek chubs. Rainbow trout remain active as well responding to a variety of presentations.

Sheridan Lake: As elsewhere not a lot of fishing activity reported last week. Some perch and trout action recently. Small minnows and powerbait for perch and flies and whatever for trout.

Stockade Lake: Crappie activity reported in recent weeks.

Lake Oahe: Not a lot of activity on the big lake at present, a combination of high winds coupled with a much better walleye bite enticing anglers to Lake Sharpe. Anglers out have been working smallmouth bass and catfish in bays.

Lake Sharpe: The lake remains the state hotspot at present with lots of walleye being caught as well as a nice catfish bite below the dam, particularly during evening hours. Spinners and bouncers with minnows or crankbaits have been working best for walleye.

Lake Francis Case: Not much activity last week as outdoor sportsmen remain focused on hunting. Recent walleye catches have been on jigs and bouncers with minnows.

Dakota Angler & Outfitter, 513 Seventh St., Rapid City; The Rooster, 1441 W. Main St., Rapid City; Wheel in Bait Shop, 18696 Fisherman’s Road, Fruitdale, and West Prairie Resort, 28354 182nd, Pierre (605-264-5303) have contributed to this report.

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