How we operate spearfishing: 

We begin the day with a morning briefing where we cover aspect of the boat, weather and water conditions. On the "dive site" the master diver will cover the depths and topography with structure you should encounter during the dives. Normal depths are 15 foot to 40 feet deep. The boat will deploy a camera in order to establish whether there is visibility or not for the dive. Most spearfisherman will be diving "solo" but "buddy diving is required until your skill level is high enough for solo diving. Typically we do not "back dive" a location although occasionally the walleye are plentiful and curious enough that we can put groups of divers on the same spot over and over producing fish! 

Normally we "live boat" meaning we do not drop anchor, instead when we reach a dive site we will drop each diver or pair for a predetermined amount of time. We require each diver to follow the state law wich simply put says, "you must be within 75 feet of your recreational dive flag".

Our primary target fish is the "Walleye" They are without doubt the best eating freshwater fish. Walleye tend to be elusive and require a skill set for for scuba divers and free divers that can only be acquired with experience and guidance. There are several other species of fish to spearfish but the small mouth bass is a good eating fish, especially when they are from the clear waters of "Oahe". Experienced spearfisherman treasure the opportunity to tackle one of our "monster" large mouth buffalo carp. They can and do top more than 50 pounds! And of course walleye regularly are taken over 8 pounds. Your chance for a trophy Walleye or Norther Pike is the highest later in the season during September or October when the bait fish have moved from the depths to shallow water and the large game fish follow them.  

If you have a large group of 8 to 14 people for diving lake Oahe, the "Horizon" our 34 foot long 12 wide fiberglass dive boat will enhance your diving adventure. This boat was custom built for diving and spearfishing the costal waters along with the open ocean, and can carry more than 60 tanks.

Please call Steamboat’s or email to inquire for group rates and availability. 

Steamboat’s is your exclusive contact when diving in central South Dakota. Steamboat’s Skin & Scuba is here to serve you, our friendly staff and knowledgeable guides enjoy helping others enjoy our area of the world. We are extremely lucky with the resources we have and we want to share them with you!

While spearfishing is our primary focus, don’t think we don’t know how to have fun without a speargun. We offer a kick ass drift dive, that you will want to do over and over again. Also, we run charters to the dive park, and we will help you get those underwater pictures you’ve been looking for.


A regular fishing license is required for spearfishing in South Dakota. For all rules and regulations pertaining to fishing in South Dakota see the South Dakota Fishing Handbook .

Spearfishing rates are based on the dates between June 15 and September 15, a minimum of two people, and allow up to two tanks per person.  Rates do not include gear rental. All dive and spearing equipment is available for rental if needed.