Mardon Resort / Potholes Reservoir Recreation Report

The end of October, Halloween, and early November means fall is in the air. The beginning of the northern flights of waterfowl, lunker walleye on Potholes Reservoir, and especially Goose Hunting in fields are all activities outdoor enthusiasts enjoy this time of year. The water level on Potholes Reservoir has risen almost 8 feet since the lowest level of 2014. On 10-29-14 the pool height of Potholes Reservoir was 1033.6, the lowest level it was this year was 1027.2. The first large group of northern ducks has arrived on Potholes Reservoir this week. Now is the time, with higher water level and new birds in the area, to enjoy a guided or non-guided hunt on the duck taxi. (

Walleye action remains excellent with many limits being reported at the MarDon Tackle Shop. The tackle shop is open from 9am-6pm week days and we are open from 7am-7pm Saturday and 7am-6pm on Sunday. Please call (509) 346-2651 if you have any questions.

The MarDon Dock continues to show good Crappie, Perch and Bass Action. Anglers are using simple baits for Perch, a hook and a worm. Crappie Anglers are using mini-jigs tipped with maggots or the new dock bait this year, a Trout Magnet. This lure is from West Virginia and it resembles a crappie jig. Many bass have been caught accidentally on Perch and Crappie Baits. Plastic Grubs, Tube Skirts, and Plastic Lizards are also producing bass at the MarDon Dock. Any day now we expect the pre-spawn walleye to begin to show on the face of O’Sullivan Dam. This phase in the walleye’s behavior magnetizes them to the fish under the MarDon Dock as a winter food source. We have already had one fisher catch and release 9 walleye using a jig and night-crawler while dock fishing. Soon Old Weed Waders secret weapon The Blade Bait will be an excellent walleye tactic. Swim baits 4, 5, and 6 inches in length are also excellent lures to target walleye from the rock wall known as the face of O’Sullivan Dam as well as the MarDon Dock.

Pheasant Hunting is now open and if you are looking for some land access for a fee you might consider joining the Royal Hunt Club. It offers 25,000 acres of farm land donated for fee hunting options. This land runs along the Royal Slope area and you can look at a map by stopping by the MarDon Store during 9am-6pm daily. You can either purchase a season pass or you can purchase a 3 day pass, the price for a season pass is $300 for the year and a 3 day pass will run you $120. For more information please call (509) 346-2651.

Casey Langley and Mark Shelton

Casey Langley of Ephrata and Mark Shelton of Moses Lake enjoyed a short day of walleye fishing on Potholes Reservoir and collected these quality walleye.

Charlie Lunn

Charlie Lunn of Ellensburg was having a relaxing day of dock fishing at MarDon Resort. He was targeting Perch with a size 6 bait hook and a night-crawler when his pole doubled over with a 5 lb 9 oz jumbo smallmouth bass. After a challenging fight and a lot of joy Charlie brought in his biggest smallmouth bass ever.

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One of the most sought after draw deer tags in the Pacific Northwest is the draw for the Desert and Desert A Mule Deer Tag. Those of us that live in the Potholes Recreation Area frequently see these magnificent animals all year round.

Here Heather Dungey of West Port shows a 5 point Mule Deer Buck in Velvet. This was harvested in the Desert Unit 290 on Saturday, October 25, 2014.

About Pete Heley

Writes and self-publishes Oregon and Washington fishing books.

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