Deep snow challenges Devils Lake ice fishing
DEVILS LAKE -- With snow piling up in the Lake Region, lake access is becoming an issue for ice anglers. It's one of the most popular winter activities in the Lake Region. Right now, three entities are handling the bulk of plowing on the lake -- ...
DEVILS LAKE -- With snow piling up in the Lake Region, lake access is becoming an issue for ice anglers.
It's one of the most popular winter activities in the Lake Region.
Right now, three entities are handling the bulk of plowing on the lake -- Woodland Resort, Ackerman Acres and the Spirit Lake Casino.
Tourism Director Suzie Baisch said the Tourism Committee has added dollars to the Winter Lake Access fund.
Winter Lake Access will be in charge of plowing East Bay, Six-Mile Bay, Pelican Lake, Lake Irvine and possibly East Devils Lake.
Baisch said between all four entities, anglers should be provided with a lot of good lake access this winter.
And, a key component of winter ice fishing in the Lake Region is Amtrak's famous "Perch Express."
It's a train that carries hundreds of ice fishermen from Wisconsin and Minnesota to Devils Lake to pursue jumbo perch on the big lake.
"When I was in St. Paul a couple weeks ago, about 80 percent of the people asked me if that train still comes here," Baisch said. "I told them 'it certainly is,' and it's important that we get that message out there."
The train has been the topic of discussions over the past year or two because of rising water conditions on Devils Lake and the stability of a bridge west of town.
There is a very reasonable $82 round-trip price tag on a journey from St. Paul to Devils Lake for a fishing trip.
Most anglers couldn't drive for that price, and the comfort and security of train travel in North Dakota in the winter time is assuring to many.
"We'll have miles and miles of trails out there," Baisch added. "But that will depend upon some things, too.
"What we need to do is find a way to fund this lake access program on a more permanent basis."
Baisch said there is enough money on hand to get through the winter with the program, but care will have to be utilized.
She said funds are limited, and there may be times this winter when it will be prudent to pick and choose with the access.
But there is one thing she will insist on.
"Don't drill holes on the trails," she said.