Temperatures soaring near 60 combined with fishable lake ice and area streams bustling with hungry trout should provide the opportunity for anglers to get out and enjoy a pre-Christmas fishing excursion this weekend. And with temperatures dropping back into the 30s next week, possibly the last weekend of the year to do so.

Most of the higher elevation lakes have solid ice at present though an ice fishing spud is never out of fashion when the slightest doubt exists.

And lastly, the South Dakota Game. Fish & Parks sent out a notification today that as of yesterday, Newell Lake has been drained and closed until further notice due to damage of the outlet structure.

Angostura Reservoir: Lake went quiet again. Ice cover reported though no reports on depths.

Belle Fourche Reservoir (Orman): Four or five inches of ice reported though no fishing reports have been received.

Black Hills Fly Fishing: Excellent trout bite on Rapid Creek with nymphs (pheasant tail jigs) working best. Dry fly fishing that has been slowed by colder weather may come back into play with this weekend with the warmer weather predicted.

Deerfield Reservoir: Ice is sold throughout the lake and perch are active on waxworms and red spikes. Fish are schooled up so be prepared to search. A few lake trout on occasion as well taken on fathead minnows or golden shiners. Best location for perch seems to be the Gold Run area while lakers are near the inlet.

Pactola Reservoir: Though the main lake is open, there is a four-inch buildup of ice from in the and spinners the presentations of choice.

Robaiux Lake: Ten inches of ice on the like along with a steady trout bite on powerbait.

Sheridan Lake: Ice from eight to 15 inches on the lake with the exception of the dam area. Perch in the eight-to-nine-inch range are being caught on waxworms or red spikes, and a few northern pike are showing up off highway 385 on golden shiners.

Stockade Lake: Ice depth is anywhere from six to 10 inches. A crappie bite on small minnows reported and a few pike on golden shiners.

Sylvan Lake: Ten inches of ice on the lake and some trout activity on powerbait reported

Lake Oahe: No reports of recent fishing activity likely due to recent snows, cold weather, and sportsmen opting for hunting rather than fish. Is likely ice in back bays.

Lake Sharp: Weather permitting, a few boats have been out recently near the bridges and up around the stilling basin as well as a few downstream. Water releases over the dam have dropped from 65,000 to 35,000 cubic feet per second which may contribute to a better walleye bite, or at least the finding thereof as strength of current decreases

Lake Francis Case: Four to five inches of ice reported on the stilling basin at Ft. Thompson and a walleye bite in progress as well.

Dakota Angler & Outfitter, 513 Seventh St., Rapid City; The Rooster, 1441 W. Main St., Rapid City; Wheel and Bait, 18696 Fisherman’s Road, Fruitdale; West Prairie Resort, 28354 182nd, Pierre (605-264-5303), Horsecreek Inn and Campground, 23570, Hill City, and Angostura State Resort have contributed to this report.

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