A persistent pattern of late afternoon storms circulating through the area continues to hamper fishing activity in the region though a period of warmer weather has improved the walleye bite in area lakes. And trout activity should will likely remain upbeat once Black Hills streams return to acceptable floes.
Walleye activity on Angostura and Orman has finally moved out what has been a rather lethargic stage. Particularly for anglers willing to work the electronics with patience. And the prospect of warmer weather should raise water temperatures to improved fish-feeding levels.
Floes on most area streams remain high at present, and will remain so for a week or so. However, for trout fishermen willing to take a long-term perspective, the current high-water levels should assure a long and productive summer season.
Angostura Reservoir: Traffic on the lake picked up last week with the combination of warmer weather and time made available to enjoy outdoor activities. The walleye bite has improved though improving rather than steadily stupendous best summarizes. Fifteen inch and smaller are the standard among fish caught at present. Working drops and breakers with bouncers/minnow or crawler presentations seem to be the ticket.
Belle Fourche Reservoir (Orman): The walleye bite has taken off the past week with anglers hauling in fish of a variety of sizes. The warmer weather has caused fish to move to deeper water—20-foot range at present. Flats have been productive areas though fish are scattered. Minnows, crawlers, and whatever else are working as fish are more hungry than choosy.
Black Hills Fly Fishing: With the exception of Spearfish Creek and sections of Castle Creek, Black Hills area streams remain largely unfishable at present though trout are being caught in Rapid Creek though town despite the high water. Fortunately, water levels are gradually subsiding and should be producing excellent trout activity soon.
Custer State Park lakes: Center and Sylvan lake have been producing excellent trout bites with leeches or various size jig nymph combinations worked in three to five foot of water recommended.
Deerfield Reservoir: Fishing activity is finally starting to pick up on the lake. At least on days when weather allows. Reports have been sketchy though supposedly some lake trout are being taken.
Pactola Reservoir: Due to high water conditions, fishing activity has been slow thus far with most of the angling relegated to shore fishing for rainbow trout which are receptive to leeches, nymphs or wooly buggers. Some pike activity in south bays reported also.
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Roubaix Lake: Steady rainbow trout bite in progress. Assorted flies or wooly buggers are working well.
Sheridan Lake: Northern pike were showing up—on smelt and chubs—near the highway 385 inlet. Rainbow trout bite remains steady throughout the lake as well, and a few perch are being taken near the buoy line across from the marina.
Lake Oahe: Though abnormally wet spring has set back the normal fishing patterns (in addition to making for very muddy access conditions in certain areas), the walleye bite is improving on Oahe including some nice fish in the 18-19-inch range. Fish are currently located at depths of anywhere from 5-20 feet and responding to bouncers and minnows or crawlers. Also, northern pike and catfish bites remain excellent in the shallow water of bays.
Lake Sharpe: A common denominator this spring has been that nice weather typically makes for nice fishing. And the recent spell of warm weather has led to a considerable increase in fishing activity in the West Bend and Joe Creek areas. Near Pierre, the Bad River runoff has complicated locating active spots though farther south limits are being taken on bouncers with either minnows or crawlers worked in 10-20 foot of water. Some smallmouth and catfish activity on most days as well.
Lake Francis Case: High water has contributed to excellent shore fishing particularly from rip-rap areas. Walleye are located in 15-25 foot of water and are responding to a variety of bouncer presentations. Smaller fish predominate, however, and sorting is required.
• South Dakota Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 2 Fishing Tournament: June 8, Angostura Reservoir. Contact Jason Mitzel (605-786-4829) for details.
• Father’s Day Fishing Tournament: June 15, Angostura Reservoir. Contact Stacy Reetz for details.
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.