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Gary Jones of East Grand Forks caught and released this 6-pound smallmouth bass Saturday, Oct. 7 while fishing a lake in northeast South Dakota1 / 2
Rick Acker of Grand Forks with the 21-inch smallmouth -- his new personal best -- that he caught and released recently in northeast South Dakota.2 / 2

Rick Acker of Grand Forks and Gary Jones of East Grand Forks had a smallmouth bass fishing trip to remember Oct. 6-8 in northeast South Dakota, boating more than 40 smallmouths during three days on the water.

At least 35 of the smallies they caught were big enough to qualify for South Dakota whopper status, Acker said, and at least 15 of those fish weighed more than 5 pounds.

Acker and Jones both caught their personal-best smallmouths at 21 inches. All of the fish were released.

"I've had a lake cabin down there for a number of years and have never seen anything like it," Acker said. "I'm guessing the full moon didn't hurt our cause."

Jones caught three smallmouths longer than 20 inches, the longest one being 21.

Brad Dokken

Brad Dokken is a reporter and editor of the Herald's Sunday Northland Outdoors pages. Dokken joined the Herald company in November 1985 as a copy editor for Agweek magazine and joined the Herald staff in 1989. He worked as a copy editor in the features and news departments before becoming outdoors editor in 1998.  A Roseau, Minn., native, Dokken is a graduate of Bemidji State University. 

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