Missouri River Fishing Report-October 1st, 2023

Written by Mike Peluso

October 2, 2023

Sorry this report is getting out a little later than normal. I took my daughters out for the youth pheasant (no luck) and totally lost track of the day.

Anyway, we have lots going on…kinda. First things first. If you haven’t noticed the Missouri River lately, it looks a lot different than it did a week ago. The corp has dropped it significantly here this past week.

Fishing prior to the drop wasn’t great, but it wasn’t bad either. Normally when they drop the water like this it takes some time for the fish to settle back in. The fish that are/were here are in turmoil. The fish that were on the way are in stall mode.

The biggest thing we need right now, and this is for all bodies of water is a frost. For some reason this usually activates the fall mode so to speak. The falling water temps will trigger fish to begin to bulk up for winter. Let’s hope this happens before it snows.

I will say this. We are seeing lots of bait up and down the river system right now. I’ve personally seen smelt, gizzard shad, shiners, baby white bass, and fathead minnows on the cleaning table. A vast majority of the walleyes I’ve caught the past couple weeks have been healthy as well.

I’m hoping for the bite to get better and better as the fall progresses. My only fear is it will be just like last year. About the time the fish showed up, so did the snow and put a halt on fishing in the boat.

What to expect if you go out on the river. Don’t expect a red hot bite. More of a blue collar grind type bite. You will also catch a lot of fish other than walleyes. White bass, catfish, gar, and a few skipjacks have made their way into the boat this past week.

For me current seams with jigs and minnows. Both vertical and pitching are working if in the right areas.

I’m booking a few trips right now for fall fishing here near Bismarck if you are looking to get out. If so get ahold of me!

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