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Darkhouse Spearfishing Opens at Ice-Up

North Dakota’s darkhouse spearfishing season opens on most state waters whenever ice-up occurs. Legal fish are northern pike and nongame species.

All individuals who participate in darkhouse spearfishing must first register online at the North Dakota Game and Fish Department website, In addition, anglers age 16 and older must possess a valid fishing license.

Spearers and anglers are reminded that materials used to mark holes must be in possession as soon as a hole greater than 10 inches in diameter is made in the ice.

North Dakota residents who do not have a fishing license may spear during the winter free fishing weekend Dec. 28-29, but they still need to register to spear.

All waters open to hook and line fishing are open to darkhouse spearing except:

  •    East Park Lake, West Park Lake, Lake Audubon – McLean County
  •    Heckers Lake – Sheridan County
  •    Larimore Dam – Grand Forks County
  •    McClusky Canal
  •    New Johns Lake – Burleigh County
  •    Red Willow Lake – Griggs County
  •    Wood Lake – Benson County

Anglers and spearers should refer to the 2018-20 North Dakota Fishing Guide for more information.