This is what I call the time of year in the great outdoors, when the ice fishing is just beginning, the pheasant season has been on for a while, and all the chicks are either bagged or well behaved enough to hug the ground rather than into the to go air.
The further north you go the more ice you will find and with the cold weather over the next week or so this ice should get thicker.
I was born in the glacial lakes of South Dakota, Watertown to be exact. I plan to fish the glacial lakes in and around Watertown, Webster, Waubay South Dakota and Ortonville Minnesota. These are locations with some of the best hunting and fishing in both the open water and hard water seasons.
Formed as glaciers moved through northeastern South Dakota, these lakes created lakes, swamps and flooded lowlands, as well as ponds, each of which has decent populations of a variety of fish. When there was a wet year, these bodies large and small would flood other low-lying areas and transplant numerous other aquatic life, with many of the smallest bodies of water becoming home to some true trophy fish.
On one occasion, my co-host Larry Myhre and I were fishing a couple of ditches along a gravel road when Larry hooked a 9+ pound walleye and after several quick photos, lowered it back into the water where it came from.
A lot of the bodies we fished didn’t have docks, just a road that was submerged where we backed the trailer into the water and caught some really good walleye and North Sea fish.
South Dakota has some of the best fishing in the northeastern part of the state, but also on the Missouri River, Lake Francis Case, a walleye factory that abandons dozens of wall brackets and offers late-season pheasant hunting.
As this year draws to a close, several upper Midwest locations including Aberdeen, Watertown, St. Paul and more will be hosting their boat, sports and travel shows. No matter what type of gear you are looking for, these events have everything an outdoor enthusiast needs including gear, outdoor clothing, fish finders, fishing gear, all types of boats including kayaks, bass, walleye and pontoon boats, ice houses , ATVs and numerous resorts and lodges you’ve always wanted to fish for.
Alongside these shows are ice fishing and open water fishing seminars taught by some of the most experienced anglers in the Midwest that offer tips on getting fish that appear to have a locking jaw to move and feed.
Then, after the first of the year, the South Dakota Gun Traders shows, including Saturday and Sunday, May 28-29. January, in Yankton, Brookings on Saturday and Sunday 14-15 January, Aberdeen on Saturday and Sunday 2nd February. 4-5, Pierre and Watertown on Saturday and Sunday 18-19 February, and the big gun show in Sioux Falls on Saturday and Sunday, 25-26. February.
Nebraska hosts the Nebraska Firearms Association gun shows, beginning with the Herman American Legion gun show on Saturday and Sunday, March 3-4. December, the Neligh Antelope County Shooters Gun Show on Saturday and Sunday, December 7-8. January Charles Yeager Memorial Gun Show in Bloomfield on Saturday and Sunday January 14-15, Spencer Gun Show in Spencer on Saturday and Sunday January 28-29, and the Creighton Gun Show on Saturday and Sunday January 22-22 April 23.
As these shows draw to a close and the weather improves across South Dakota and Nebraska, numerous activities open up, with spring fishing beginning to improve as hunters count down the days before spring turkey season begins.