Fly Fishing in North Dakota

North Dakota may not be thought of as the fly fishing capitol but there are some very well stocked lakes and streams in the state. In April of 2006, I heard from Scott Stential from the local Scheels sporting goods store who gets regular reports not only from the North Dakota Fish and Game Department but from local anglers out to catch those big ones. He was guest speaker at the Fly Fisher’s Club meeting in April and told us of some good fishing spots in the state. Here are some of the hot spots in the state and what to catch. These lakes are all public access but some may not be very easy to get to in a car.

I’ll go by county and tell about the lakes that have been stocked and are currently good spots for fishing not only using fly rigs but with regular rod and reels. You also have to make sure you have the current fishing license and any stamps for the type of fish in the state you are fishing and follow any catch and release and size regulations for the area lake, pond, river or stream your fishing. The ponds are too small for boat access and some are even too small for any type of watercraft. Make sure you follow any state regulations regarding boat use and that you clean your boat before leaving the boat ramp area to prevent the transfer of harmful aquatic nuisance species such as Zebra mussels and Eurasian water milfoil. Also pickup any trash or help the environment by picking up trash you see that others have carelessly left behind. If you help the environment even a little you will be preserving the great outdoors for generations to come as well as making the areas nice for yourself.

Nelson County

McVille Dam

McVille Dam is one mile east of McVille, 40 miles southeast of Devils Lake right off of Highway 15. The lake is a smaller one with boat access, gravel roads around some of the lake and a fishing area with a pier and a vault toilet. The lake is well stocked with Northern Pike Walleye and Rainbow Trout.

Stutsman County

Little Britches Pond

Little Britches Pond is next to the Jamestown Resevoir Marina right outside of Jamestown, ND. It is a small pond and great for kids to fish in, plus it’s well stocked with Rainbow Trout, Yellow Perch, Black Crappie, Bluegill and Smallmouth Bass. This lake has no boat access as it is too small for motorboating.

Barnes County

Blumers Pond

Blumers Pond is one mile south of Valley City in Barnes County. This is another small pond great for trout. It is well stocked with trout in part due to it’s proximity to the Valley City Federal Fish Hatchery. There is no boat ramp as this is a small pond with no motorboating allowed.

Hatchery Kids Pond

This is another pond in the area of the Federal Fish Hatchery that is well stocked with Rainbow Trout as well as Black Crappie, Bluegill and Yellow Perch. This pond is two miles northwest of Valley City near the Baldhill Dam area. This spot is another small pond and great for it’s easy access and small size but has no boat access.

Moon Lake

This lake is 10 miles south and west of Valley City, straight south of Interstate 94. This smaller lake is stocked with Walleye, Rainbow Trout and was stocked in 2004 with Fall Chinook Salmon. Moon Lake is part of the Moon Lake State Wildlife Management area.

Ransom County

Mooringstone Pond

Mooringstone pond is a stones throw from the historic Fort Ransom site north of Highway 27. It is on a small trail that is off the road so is not accessible for boat fishing and is well stocked with Rainbow Trout for it’s size.

Richland County

Mooreton Pond

Mooreton Pond is two miles east of Mooreton, about ten miles west of Wahpeton. This man made pond was made for fishing and is well stocked with Rainbow Trout, Largemouth Bass, Yellow Perch and even Fathead Minnows. This pond is too small for motorboating but is easily accessible from the shore.

These are the hot spots as of this writing, I’m sure there are other spots that are also very good for fly fishing or regular fishing in the state. I know that people catch many types of fish on the Red River especially Catfish but also Walleye and others. The larger lakes are all good for Walleye, Northern Pike and other fish. Smaller streams and cold lakes are best for trout and many are stocked in the state.

You can go to the North Dakota Fish and Wildlife Departments website for further fishing and stocking information here: http://gf.nd.gov/fishing/nd-fish-wat.html . You can also get fishing regulations and other information from the web site there. Another good source for fishing tips and hot spots is local fishing or sporting goods stores. There are also some very good web sites such as Fishing Buddy that has forums for fishermen to give help and tips to one another and can be found here: http://www.fishingbuddy.com/ .Websites such as these are often the best place to get up to date information on fishing spots and is a good way for people to talk about their luck on specific lakes and other spots.

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