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#44: Feeding the Locals in North Dakota

We spent the morning in Yellowstone, and then drove to Billings, Montana to stay with the Jeters, some friends of my parents that moved out there a few years back. In the morning we set out for North Dakota, and picked a tackle shop outside of the capital city of Bismark to go ask for help. North Dakota’s state fish is a Northern Pike, a fish that we had both caught before but did not have a ton of experience with. It was much easier than we anticipated. We were told that Cherry Lake, which was less than an hour away, had an abundant population of pike, so we picked up some spoon lures and headed over in that direction.

Within a few casts both of us had landed pike, and nearly every other cast it seemed we would catch another.

There was a group of families camping out of their RVs a little ways away from the dock, and after Daniel landed a good sized one that was hooked in the gills, I went over and asked if they wanted to keep any fish. They said they would love to, but did not know how to cook them. I had never cooked or prepared pike before, but fish is fish, and I managed to get a good amount of meat off the bones by fileting it with a pocket knife that they had. After they cooked it up they brought some over to us. It was delicious.

They had several young kids running around too, and they eagerly asked if we could help them catch a fish, so we spent the next hour or so helping them cast out and reel in, and two of them even managed to catch a pike, which was an awesome sight. They loved how fierce looking the fish were, and eventually when it got dark we said goodbye, and headed south towards South Dakota.



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