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Fishing outlook is great at Devils Lake By Larry Myhre

Reprinted from the Sioux City Journal.

Anglers heading for North Dakota’s Devils Lake will find conditions to be a little bit different this year.

A very mild winter with very little snow has combined to result in very little runoff into the lake.

And that, says professional fisherman Johnnie Candle, who lives and guides on the big lake, will change fishing patterns. “We’re not going to have that big influx of water that causes fish to move into current areas,” he said. “Instead, you are going to have to look for areas of warmer water, which isn’t hard to do. Those shallow, dark bottom bays with early weed growth are going to be the key.”

Candle was in Sioux City for the Scheels Fish Fest activities at the Southern Hills Mall. He’s been on the walleye tournament trail since 1994 and has been guiding about 90 trips a year (in between tournaments) for the past 15 years. [Read more…]

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Red River catfish guide talks catfishing By Larry Myhre

Reprinted from the Sioux City Journal.

Mention Red River of the North to any fisherman in Siouxland and visions of big channel catfish will begin dancing in their minds.

There is no place on earth that produces the number of big channel catfish than does the Red.

It’s a 545-mile-long river that is born from water spilling out of the Bois de Sioux and Otter Tail rivers near Beckenridge, Minn. It flows north, forming the border between North Dakota and Minnesota before flowing into Manitoba on its way to Lake Winnipeg.

Brad Durick has guided on the Red for the past eight years, working out of Grand Forks. Currently, Durick has turned to full-time guiding, writing and educating catfish anglers.

“Catfishing on the Red should start about May 1 this year,” Durick said. “Of course if we get another weeklong cold front that sees highs in the 40s, that goes right out the window. Of course catfish bite right after the ice comes off and there are guys catching them right now, but I don’t get too excited until the water temperature hits 48 degrees. When it gets into the mid 50s, I really start getting excited.”

Durick was on hand for last week’s Fish Fest hosted by the Sioux City Scheels All Sports store at the Southern Hills Mall.

“We’re going to have very low water conditions this year,” he said. “There will be no flood this year or the threat of one.

“I would not say that low water makes fishing tough,” he continued. “It just makes it different from what you are used to. You fish more in the channel of the river than you do when dealing with high water. The fish will be working the current seams just as they do in high water, but it will be more toward the middle of the river.” [Read more…]