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walleye, walleyes, jigging, jig, jigs


 Lake Oahe—Mobridge, South Dakota—PWT
 By John Phillips

The second event to the 1999 Professional Walleye Trail season was held at
Jed’s Landing on Lake Oahe, at Mobridge, South Dakota. Mobridge is located
in North Central South Dakota. It is has good ‘ol Hometown charm and warmth.
Mobridge was really a nice town to visit; this was my first time there.
Everywhere I went the people were friendly and helpful. The Mobridge Chamber
of Commerce, lead by executive director Christi Lee, really rolled out the
red carpet for all the tournament anglers. 

Pre-fishing was good. I found several spots in the Grand River, in the main
Missouri River, near the water plant, near the Indian Creek Campgrounds, and
to the South in the Moreau River. The winds were from the Southeast at a
gentle 10 to 15 mph. The waves were only 1 or 2 feet and allowed you could
get around with ease and provided the perfect “walleye chop.” 

At the rules meeting the PWT tournament directors explained how the South
Dakota Department of Conservation has put new restrictions on the walleye
limits on Lake Oahe. Fishermen can keep 4 fish; only one can be over 18”.
The PWT also set the tournament limit at minimum of 14” and 2 fish over 18”
for a total team limit of 6 fish per day for the tournament. The partner
drawing was completed and all anglers returned to their motels anxiously
waiting the next day. 

Overnight the rain came, the wind changed direction, North! The wind was
clocked at 25-35 mph, gusting to 45 mph. The waves were up too! 3 or 4
footers. We were on call hour to hour until day 1 was canceled.  Day 2 the
winds were up to 30-40 mph with gusts to 60 mph. 5” of rain and 50 degrees
temperatures prompted PWT officials to again call off the tournament for day

Day 3 the winds seemed to have calmed down, when actually it had switched
more to the northwest. The rain had stopped. The contestants left Jed’s
Landing in two single file lines heading for their secret spots. The waves
grew as we ran further down river. My 620 Ranger Walleye boats really handled the big
waves with ease. I took us almost 1 hour to run to my #1 spot near the mouth
of the Moreau River. The wind was so strong that it was blowing us quickly
across our spot. We caught several fish, but the 14” size was not easily
>From this bay we ran into the Moreau River looking for calm water, but found
that the new wind direction had caused the river to have 5’ swells. I
decided that this water was not fishable and returned to the previous bay. I
made several more passes through this bay, but caught only short fish.
Running out of fishing time, I choose to run to my #2 spot. As we were
getting set-up to fish, coming out to 50’ of water to 30’ I contacted a good
fish. It was a 4.43# walleye and a welcome sight for sore eyes, a very
healthy walleye for the live well! Several more passes were made in this
area, but only short fish were to be had. 

We returned to the weigh-in with our single walleye, at 4.34 # we were only
.3# out of the big fish money. The PWT paid out 12 places due to combining
the three tournament days into a one-day event. 

I would like to express a special thanks to Bridge City Bait in Mobridge.
Call Jerry, Janice, or Doug at (605) 845-3132 for the latest information on
the bite or weather condition. They also have rental cabins available and
guide service.


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