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Fishing Locations & Lodging Options

Part of the stress in booking a fishing trip - if there is any - can revolve around figuring out where to go, where to stay, and what civilization is there nearby in case you need food or other essential items. If you want to go fish North Dakota on a Missouri River reservoir or Devils Lake, this should give you a feel for the area.

Lake Sakakawea, North Dakota


Lake Sakakawea is a large reservoir of the Missouri River above Garrison Dam. The fishing tends to be better upstream north and west in the early season, and the downstream area near the dam will get better towards summer. There is also a super large bay called the Van Hook Arm up by New Town, ND that fishes a little more like a traditional lake but still has access to the main reservoir. There is an awful lot of shoreline, so picking a place near your fishing location is incredibly helpful here.

Map courtesy of the US Army Corps of Engineers (map weblink)

We would recommend the Van Hook Territorial Inn for a hotel feel (located just east of New Town on Hwy 23) or their sister site cabins The Lodge at Van Hook right down the road for a trip up to the Van Hook Arm portion of Lake Sakakwea. There's also a nice ranch called Deepwater Bay Bed & Breakfast in the back of Deepwater Bay south of the Van Hook Arm. A little ways further south is the well-known Indian Hills Resort for a good middle location in the summer. Another good option for the Van Hook Arm and the lake just upriver from it would be the 4 Bears Casino on Hwy 23 just west of New Town and across the bridge, which has hundreds of hotel rooms, cabins, an RV park, boat ramp with fish cleaning, and, obviously, the casino for some off-the-water recreation. There are also two nice hotels in New Town, Teddy's Residential Inn and Little Missouri Inn & Suites, that are reasonable for just pure hotel lodging. You can go all the way downstream to Garrison or Pick City if you want to stay close to the dam and fish as far downstream as possible too. From New Town at the tip of the Van Hook Arm to Garrison you're looking at almost an hour and a half drive by land, so plan accordingly.

Links for Lodging Recommendations on Lake Sakakawea:

4 Bears Casino:

Van Hook Territorial Inn: 

The Lodge at Van Hook:

Deepwater Bay Bed & Breakfast:

Indian Hills Resort:

Devils Lake, North Dakota


Devils Lake (the lake) is by Devils Lake (the town) a little more than an hour drive west of Grand Forks on Hwy 2. The town is pretty accommodating for an awesome fishery including a WalMart Supercenter, plenty of hotels, cabins and resorts on the water, and a handful of restaurants (you absolutely must try the German sausage at Mr. & Mrs. J's for breakfast and spend at least one dinner at The Ranch Steakhouse). No matter where you stay, you can drive, by water or by land, almost anywhere you want to go easily under an hour.

The lake is made up of a number of "chunks" of what used to be separate lakes before the water levels rose to current-day levels. The main "chunks" include Pelican Lake in the NW corner, then West Bay, Main Devils Lake, East Bay, and East Devils Lake as you cross the map west to east. And since so much of this lake is flooded land where water has overtaken trees, roads, cornfields, farmer's rock piles, electric towers, bridges, and even railroads, knowing your way around is extremely important - especially as water levels rise and fall - to avoid busting up a boat and cutting the trip short.

Flooded road in Devil's Lake

Map courtesy of USGS (map weblink)