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Archived Reports: 2013-2014 2011-2012 2010-2011

2012-2013 Reports

Wednesday, April 10 2013

Were Back!!!  Things have improved quite a bit around here.   We do still have quite a bit of snow on Devils Lake but we have found some areas that have less snow and places where the perch have been biting big time!!!  True we cannot drive a truck quite yet where ever we want to but if you are interested in catching the Devils Lake Jumbos we have just the spot or two for you!  By the looks of the 10 day forecast, things are not going to change a whole lot around here.  We are supposed to have 25 to 35 degree highs during the day with lows at night in the teens.  Our ice conditions....we are kind of starting to worry that we already have next years ice.  It's starting to feel like it will never go away.  We are using 1 foot extensions on our augers and by the time the auger goes through we are right down to the gear box.  Easily 35 to 40 inches of ice and growing.

We are in the process of calling those who wanted us to call them back when conditions improved off the list of folks we cancelled.  We are currently taking reservations from April 12 to the end of the month.  I know this sounds crazy and believe me it is, we have never seen such a crazy spring.  But we should have some pretty outstanding fishing between now and ice out.  If you want to put a trip together give us a call, we have plenty of room so does Woodland Resort for the lodging and lets get back to it!!!

These are some pictures from a couple of groups we guided the past couple of weekends that we took out on snowmobiles.



Saturday, March 16 2013

Thursday, March 16 2013

The Perch Patrol is suspending all of our guide trips until further notice.  We received another 4 inches yesterday and the slush problems have begun.  Another major storm is forecasted to hit us again tomorrow evening and another 6 to 8 inches is heading our way.  We just can't buy a break right now and when it starts to affect the quality of the trip we can provide we are not doing anybody any favors by trying to keep going. 

We will open our doors again for business when our conditions improve.  If we could get some warm temps and begin to shrink some of this snow, we will gladly resume guiding again.  We have know way of predicting when this will happen however as we are dealing with mother nature.  We will let you know via this website through the fishing report page when we re-open.

We are currently in the process of calling all of our guests that we have scheduled in the next 2 weeks and cancelling them.  If you have a trip booked with the Perch Patrol please give us a call (701) 351-3474 for further instructions. 

Wednesday, March 13 2013

Well things have been interesting around here to say the least.  A week ago Monday the Devils Lake area got covered with 13 to 15 inches of snow and that has made travel on Devils Lake VERY diffucult.  If you are planning on coming fishing here in the next two weeks, and are on your own, we highly recommend snowmobiles or track vehicles.  We are using snowmobiles and some areas we are chaining our tires but we do get stuck from time to time.  The 10 day forecast shows one day that is above 33 degrees all the rest it shows 19 to 25 degree highs with single digits and teens for lows.  What an exact opposite from last season.  We will have ice forever it seems.

The good news is the perch fishing has been pretty decent for us lately.  Our best success has been on the forage minnow tipped with 2 or 3 wax worms.  We have had both good numbers and some good size ones as well.  The photos below were taken since our last report.  Amazing what sunny days will help produce.

We do have a few openings, not many but here they are:

March 17 room for 4

March 20 rooom for 10

March 21 room for 8

March 24 room for 5

March 25 thru 27th room for 6

March 30 room for 2


Tuesday, February 26  2013

The sun has been shining, the weather has stabilized, no blizzards, no monster cold fronts, and guess what???  The fish are biting!!!

It has been a while since our last report and for that I apologize!   When the fishing is tough, the guides job is a lot more difficult.  We have been putting in some marathon days trying to make things happen out there and I will admit it is very difficult to keep up with fishing reports when your evenings are so short.

The perch fishing the past three or four days has everyone in a stir around here!  We have had quite a few groups limit out and other groups have come close to it.  We are still using the buckshot rattle spoon tipped with either minnow heads, perch eyes, maggots, or wax worms.  The size of the schools of perch we are finding seem to be getting larger.  It is so fun when there is 3 foot thick of them and they decide to compete for your bait! 

The walleye fishing has been fairly decent when it is cloudy out.  Since our last report, the walleye fishing has been the key to our success when we were in the middle of all those fronts moving through and the cloudy, foggy dreary days.  Buckshot Rattle spoons and Forage minnow have been the best tipped with a minnow head.  We have been fishing mainly structure and we did have some pretty good days fishing shorelines in 8 to 10 feet of water as well.

We haven't done a lot of northern pike fishing this season but the days we do go for them it is pretty much a slam dunk.  We had a few fun days in 8 feet of water using just the jig rods.  It is so much fun to feel a northern pike slam your lure in that shallow of water.

We do not have much left for open days for the remainder of this season.  Posted below is the only available dates we have left:

March 20th  room for 6

March 21st  room for 6

March 24th  room for 6

March 25 - 28th room for 12

March 29th room for 7

March 30th room for 8

March 31st room for 12

Have a Great week of fishing everybody!!!

Monday, February 11 2013

Well, we dodged a huge bullet yesterday!!!  The big blizzard went south of us.  Not one inch of snow here on Devils Lake and after hearing some of the amounts of snow that fell in some areas that would have made travel on Devils Lake very difficult.  So we are still able to drive our trucks pretty much everywhere, we do get stuck sometimes but it is mostly due to all the clouds and foggy weather we have had the last three weeks.

There is no secret that the fishing has been slower than normal for us in the perch department the last three weeks but we haven't had exactly "perch" type weather either.  It sure would be nice to see the sunshine for a couple of days in a row!  We are marking all kinds of fish but the perch have developed some lock-jaw on certain days.  The walleye fishing has still been decent on flooded roadbeds, humps, and timber shorelines.  We are doing the best on Northland Buckshot rattle spoons tipped with either minnow heads or wax worms.

On the bright side of things the forecast looks pretty decent coming up.  Hopefully it will stabilize and get some of this high barametric pressure out of here.  We have had some pretty decent catches on both walleyes and perch but don't have table full of limits to show you.

Have a great week and good luck fishing everybody!!!

Tuesday, January 30th 2013

Sorry for the delayed report, things have been a little on the hectic side around here.  The fishing on Devils Lake has been a little on the slower side lately.  The afternoons seem to be the better part of the day for us.  We have had quite a bit of weather thrown our way with some pretty extreme cold fronts and top it off with a full moon and you find yourself scrounging for ever bite you can get.  The perch fishing has probably take the biggest hit.  We have several schools of deep water perch located and we check them as much as possible but they just are not in the feeding mood lately. 

The success we have enjoyed is fishing shallower water in the timber type bites.  These fish seem less affected by the conditions and are much more apt to bite.  The problem is you don't mark near as many fish and you have to be a lot more patient.  The times to fish the hardest and continue jigging is actually when you are not marking anything at all on the Vexilar.  In other words you have to attract them in below your house.  The guys with the rods laying on the ice found a good spot for them because they're not gonna need them.

The fishing has not all been bad however, every day we seem to bring in a mix of limits of walleyes, some perch, and a few northerns as well.  The houses with the bucket full at the end of the day had some guys that fished hard the whole day. 

We are constantly getting calls from folks trying to make a reservation and it is getting challenging trying to find room.  We do have some opening but it is getting hard to find two or three days in a row with vacancy.  I am listing below some dates that we still have some room and if it will work for your party, please give us a call.  As always these available dates are on a first reserved basis.  This schedule will change daily and is subject to change without notice.

February March

6th room for 6

7th room for 12

10th room for 12

13th room for 4

14 room for 12

16 room for 2

17 room for 4

19th room for 5

24th room for 4

28th room for 6

13th room for 12

14th room for 15

15th room for 8

17th room for 6

March 18th through 30 are still pretty open for one of the best times of the season.

Wednesday, January 16th 2013

We have had some very good days since our last report and a few tough days in between.  We survived our first blizzard of the season and we ended up fishing right through it, although our days were shortened a bit.  We were supposed to get 12 to 16 inches of snow, which would have been a major bummer, but we lucked out and only got about 6 inches.  We are still able to drive our trucks with ease for the most part.  You can get stuck if you try to.  We had a lot of wind with the blizzard and it did make some drifts. 

The perch fishing right now is either boom or bust.  The days we do well, we wind up doing really well and the days we don't we stink up the joint.  Thank God for very consistent walleye fishing on those days.  All in all, we seem to be able to make something happen every day which is definitely a product of some pretty good team work going on. 

Our best perch fishing is happening in anywhere from 20 to 44 feet of water.  Still having the best luck on Buckshot rattle spoons and forage minnows tipped with minnow heads or maggots.  The walleye fishing has been incredible!  Some of the best catches have been on humps, flooded points, or any type of structure.  Both the sunrise bite and the before dark bites have been on fire, and there are days when the middle of the day has produced as well.

Our reservations are through the roof!  We have a lot of sold out dates but we still have some room available.  The best advise we can give you is to call us with some dates in mind and we just have to go through the book and see if we can find some dates that will work.

Have a great week everybody!


Monday, January 7th 2013

The fishing has been very good at times and other times have been challenging.  The huge perch bite that we enjoyed through the holidays ended when all the fronts started around the New Years Holiday.  But we have found other schools of perch that have given us some nice limits for some of our guests.  The walleye fishing has been the most consistent lately.  The right before dark bite has been spectacular at times.  We are still fishing deep basins for perch and humps, points, and shorelines for walleyes.  Overall we are still able to put together some fantastic days of fishing.  We just have had to be more creative and work a little harder at times to counteract all these warm front/cold front situations mother nature has been throwing at us.

We are still catching most of our perch on buckshot rattle spoons, halis, and genz worms.  Walleyes seem to still inhale the buckshots, jigging raps, and chubby darters. 

The ice conditions keep growing all the time.  We now have a solid 16 to 18 inches everywhere we seem to go and we are driving our trucks.  We have about 2 inches of snow on the ice and it is impossible to get stuck as of yet!!! 


We had a group of 12 that had reserved the January 21, 22, and 23rd dates and they moved their trip to March.  We have been turning a lot of people away for those 3 days as we were full, but now we have room on these days and we need to fill them up!!!  So if you are reading this report and were told we were full at that time, please call us back as we now have room. 

Busy schedule this year!  If you are planning a trip for February or March, please call us immedietly as dates are filling fast.

Have a great week of fishing everybody!

Thursday, December 27th 2012

Happy Holidays Everybody!!!  Sorry for the delayed report.  Things have been CRAZY BUSY around here.  The past 10 days the perch fishing has been very good.  Today, however, not so good.  This 20 below zero cold front we enjoyed over Christmas did not do us any favors today.  A severe case of "Lock-Jaw" seems to have developed at least for today anyway.  On the bright side of things, our day was salvaged by limits of walleyes caught by our guests before dark.  There was also a fair number of northern pike caught as well.

We are still catching our perch in fairly deep water using buckshot rattle spoons tipped with minnow heads and #8 Genz worms tipped with maggots.  The walleyes we caught today were in anywhere from 14 feet to 22 feet of water.  The early morning bite and the right before dark bite was the two hottest times that produced the most fish today.

The ice conditions on Devils Lake are improving big time!  We are finding 14 to 15 inches pretty much every where now.  Today was the first day we drove our trucks.  It sure felt good to park those ATV's in the garage!  If you are venturing on your own, please use caution around cracks and pressure ridges.

All of our guides are in full swing.  We are hitting many areas of the lake at once, so our list of "hot spots" will continue to grow on a daily basis.  The schedule is jammed packed with guests and we are going to be very busy for the unforeseeable future.  We do still have some openings available in the next two weeks but they are getting more challenging to find.  It is a long season though and we still have plenty of room in February and March.

Have a great week Everybody and have a safe and Happy New Years as well.


Sunday, December 16 2012

                Hammer Time!!!

Well, this season is starting out like last year ended.  GANGBUSTERS!  The Jumbo Perch-a-thon has been red hot on Devils Lake this past week.  A very large school of perch was found in 42 feet of water and the Perch Patrol customers cashed in Big time!  Limits of perch have been caught the past 3 days and these are the kind of perch that stop you from reeling for a moment or two.  The walleye fishing has been also very good as well with limits coming in from just about everywhere on the lake.  We can't imagine a better start to this ice fishing season. 

Northland Buckshot rattle spoons, Forage minnows, Genz worms, Hali's with the dropper chain, Stop Light spoons, tipped with minnow heads or loaded up with wax worms have all been successful.  Plain hook and minnow below a bobber has been effective as well. 

The ice conditions are improving all the time.  We have barely any snow on the ice, so without any insulation going on we are making ice quite rapidly.  For the most part the lake has anywhere from 8 to 12 inches of ice but there still could be areas where the ice is thinner.  We strongly recommend 4 wheelers, ATV's and snowmobile for now.  Not enough ice for vehicles quite yet.

We are going to have a very busy season this year.  We have never had so many reservations in the books and as many "sold out" days on the schedule as we do right now this early in the season.  If you are at all serious about making a trip to Devils Lake this winter and fishing with the Perch Patrol, we cannot stress enough how important it is for you to get something scheduled very soon.  We want to take you fishing this season and as always once we are full...we are full.  There are still some of our regular every year customers that we have not yet heard from yet.  The word is definitely out on what an awesome season we had last year. 

Have a Great Week Everybody!!!  BE SAFE!!!

Thursday, December 6th 2013

Game ON!!!


Perch Patrol Guide Nick Fautsch was one of the first guides on our crew to hit the ice this season and he caught himself a nice limit of 15 to 19 inch walleyes last evening!!!  Way to Nick!  Yes, folks we have fishable ice on Devils Lake and smaller lakes connecting to it.  Ice conditions...well they are kind of all over the board.  The shallower bodies of water on the North and western parts of the lake have had ice for 2 to 3 weeks and the ice is plenty good to walk on and perhaps for 4 wheelers.  The rest of Devils Lake including the main bay and east bays have 4 to 5 inches.  The south shoreline -- specifically Grahams Island, Zieback Pass area the ice opened up and there is quite a stretch of open water still so you probably want to avoid the south end of the Main bay entirely.

We would like to send out a special Thank You to all of you that visited our booth at the St. Paul Ice Fishing Show.  Record attendance was again set at the World's Largest Ice Fishing Show.  It is so fun to visit with people about all the booming fish populations we currently have in Devils Lake right now and tomorrow we get to do it all over again!  We are heading to Rothschild, Wisconson - a suburb of Wausau, for another 3 day show at the Patriot Center.  It has been quite a few years since the Perch Patrol has had the opportunity to work a sport show in Wisconsin.  So, we are extremely excited to be a part of the Wisconsin Ice Fishing Show.  Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, November 28 2012

WE HAVE ICE!!!  As of yesterday the entire Devils Lake has capped over!  This is ahead of schedule from years past.  The shallow bays on the western side of Devils Lake and some of the smaller lakes that are now connected to Devils Lake have had ice for nearly two weeks already have up to 6 inches of ice and there are some people fishing and doing quite well. 

It is bitter sweet to have to leave tomorrow morning.  I am always excited to work our booth at the St. Paul Ice Fishing Show but MAN, I would sure like to wet a line this weekend.   It's times like these where we have to remind ourselves that this is also a job.  SO, yes come and visit us at the World's Largest Ice Fishing Show in downtown St. Paul, Minnesota.  This will be held at the River Center which is attatched to the Excell Energy Center.  Of which, thanks to the NHL, will be the closest thing that facility will have to ice this season.

It will be tough to answer emails the next few days, as I will be out of town but you can always reach me on the Perch Patrol Hotline (701) 351-3474.  If I do not answer, please leave a message and I will try to return calls in the morning before the show starts.

We have been taking a ton of reservations lately and there is plenty of prime dates still available but they aren't going to stay that way for ever.  So if you can't make it to this show and want to be assured of getting the dates you want this season, give us a call or Woodland Resort a call, and let's get your group in the books!

Have a great week and we hope to see you at the St. Paul Ice Fishing Show!!!

Tuesday, November 20 2012

Greetings Everybody!  Well things are starting to happen around here.  No ice on Devils Lake quite yet but the water temperature is 33 degrees.  Some of the smaller lakes and ponds do have ice anywhere from 3 to 6 inches.  We are one cold front away from Devils Lake freezing over so long as the winds are calm.  Hopefully we can build some decent ice before the snow flies.

Our new fleet of Vexilars came last Friday, and our Fish Trap Thermals came today!  So we will be busy getting our gear ready and houses put together very soon.  I hate to brag, but I can say with all honesty that the Perch Patrol is coming off of perhaps our best ice fishing season last year and one of our best summers being this past one.  The fish numbers and size on Devils Lake is the best in years!!!  The perch numbers are way up again and so are the walleye populations.  These are facts that have been released by our North Dakota Game and Fish Biologist Randy Hiltner.  I believe him too, Randy is a very good biologist and when he talks about fish populations on Devils Lake, I listen!

We are also gearing up for the St. Paul Ice Fishing Show the first weekend in December (Nov.30, Dec.1, Dec.2).  This is by far the worlds largest ice fishing show of its kind and myself along with Woodland Resort owner Kyle Blanchfield, will be sharing a booth, handing out brochures, and visiting with ice fishermen.  New this year, we will be also taking the show a little farther down the road as we will be traveling to Wausau, Wisconsin the second weekend in December (Dec. 7,8,and 9th).  We are VERY excited to doing an ice fishing show in Wisconsin again.  It has been quite a few years since the old shows in Madison.  So we are looking forward to a return trip to the Land of Cheese!

If you are serious about making a trip out to see us this year and fish with the Perch Patrol Guide Service, whether it is on the Perch Express Package or you wish to fish with us by the day, I am encouraging you to make your reservations NOW.  The reservations we currently have in our books at this point is at an all time high and you can get in ahead of when we go to work the booth at these two 3 day ice fishing shows.

I will be posting more on a weekly basis once we start fishing.

Stay Safe!

Steve "Zippy" Dahl

Director, Perch Patrol Guide Service, LLC


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