The year of 2020 is almost upon us, and reports of some really big walleye are already coming out of the tailrace below the Garrison Dam on the Missouri River! Yes, late January and early February already! It looks like it might be another epic season for trophy walleye and potentially another state record. Water levels are still high but manageable for now, which could be great for the system and spawning activity, so long as we avoid an all-out flood situation. It also means lots of water to fish and more space out there for anglers!
The year of 2019 was pretty darn good at Lake Sakakawea for both numbers and size, most of the season bringing in a median size walleye of 18-21 inches and plenty of mid twenties. The fall season was dominated by the 22-28 inch fish, which was a catch-and-release blast for the days one could manage to get out in the weather. There were also a good number of 30+ inchers reported, especially early season pre and post spawn, so if that excites you, keep an eye on the ice reports, brush up on your jig pitching skills, and get up to Sakakawea this spring!
Devils Lake was stronger for numbers, but the 13-16 inch fish were crowding out the better sized ones a little more. There were still big fish to be caught, but it took more searching and more picking through the small ones. That said, fall still brought some more mature fish on cranks and jigs as it tends to do, and hopefully 2020 is as good or better.
In order to get the juices flowing, I'll leave you with our best of 2019 highlights video and look forward to getting out on the water with all of you soon! We will be fishing Lake Sakakawea all year from ice out to ice up along with a few trips to Devils Lake for those wanting to see that unique place as well, so keep us in mind for your vacation plans this year!