Take the North Dakota Game and Fish Challenge and Go Fishing – Grand Forks Herald

BISMARCK — When it comes to outdoor activities, Cayla Bendel, R3 coordinator for the North Dakota Game and Fish Department, has always been a generalist.

It started early, she said, spending the afternoons in Dad’s boat and fishing for anything that bit. She was just happy to catch something. Bendel says she believes that even today, avid anglers can still feel a bit giddy the moment they catch a fish; for a brief moment, they can feel what it’s like to be a kid again.

As R3 Coordinator, Bendel is responsible for recruiting, retaining and reactivating hunters, anglers and recreational shooters in the state. While licensing sales are certainly a component of that, she hopes to ensure a future where everyone has the opportunity to experience giddy moments like this if they so choose. Yet it is his fear that in today’s seemingly infinitely busy and competitive world there will be fewer and fewer of them.

“People who have never fished think they don’t have time to learn a whole new hobby, don’t have the ability or desire to own a boat, and think they need one , and sometimes just don’t know what they’re doing. They’re gone,” Bendel said. “And some can become so focused on a certain species or on expectations of success that they’ve forgotten how cool it is to ‘catch a fish.’

Cue the Game and Fish Department’s 2022 North Dakota Fish Challenge, an initiative designed to inspire more people to fish and encourage them to try to catch a new species, explore new waters and learn (or remember) what fishing can be fun.

“I can see myself now on a dock somewhere this summer begging for a 4 inch perch to bite my hook to help with the challenge and excitement I will feel when a fish bites,” Bendel said.

So what’s the challenge? Catch channel catfish, northern pike, yellow perch and smallmouth bass of all sizes in North Dakota from May 1 through August 15. you will receive a sticker, certificate and be listed on the page as the winner of the challenge.

Don’t know where to catch them? Check the ministry’s Where to Fish page to locate a lake or river with these species near you.

Too easy? Consider forming a friendly competition with other anglers to catch the biggest of each species, or limit the challenge to a particular weekend or lake. Make it your own and have fun fishing.

For contest rules, to complete the challenge, or to submit a catch, go to gf.nd.gov/fish-challenge.

About Patricia Kilgore

Check Also

Rob Phillips: Columbia fish numbers strong, supported by shad and sockeye salmon | Outdoors and leisure

The folks who oversee fish counting procedures at dams on the lower Columbia River have …