Outdoors

Fri
18
May

Angler season underway

Big northern pike were found on opening weekend in the Ely area. Lake trout and stringers of walleye were also reported. Let's go fishing!

Mon
14
May

Dayton breaks ranks, vetoes wild rice bill

by Tom Coombe -

Fri
04
May

Reminder: Comment on new deer management plan by May 9

The Department of Natural Resources welcomes comments through Wednesday, May 9, on Minnesota’s draft deer plan that sets a new statewide harvest target, increases citizen participation in deer management and outlines ways to keep the population and habitat healthy.
The plan includes limiting the deer population in northeast Minnesota in areas where moose are present.
Part of the plan outlines strategic ways the DNR will prioritize its resources and activities to meet the plan’s eight key goals, which range from keeping Minnesota deer healthy to ensuring biological and societal factors are considered in management decisions.

Fri
27
Apr

MPCA to withdraw Wild Rice rulemaking

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) is withdrawing the Wild Rice rule from the rulemaking process that it has been in for nearly a year.
“We’ve heard many, many voices, including the Administrative Law Judge on this topic, and the message is clear,” says MPCA Commissioner John Linc Stine. “Although the science is accurate, when it comes to how best to apply the science and affordably implement the rule, we still have more work to do. So, the MPCA will withdraw it from the rulemaking process. We look forward to working with legislators over the next three weeks to determine an alternative path forward.”
Recent findings by an Administrative Law Judge and the ongoing expressions of concern from all sides led the agency to reevaluate their plans, according to Stine.

Sat
21
Apr

Nolan’s North Country Scenic Trails Bill passes House Natural Resources Committee

Bill would help put the finishing touches on a unified 4,600-mile national hiking trail system from North Dakota to New England and the East Coast
The House Natural Resources Committee today unanimously passed U.S. Rep. Rick Nolan’s bipartisan bill (H.R. 1026) to incorporate the more than 400 miles of Superior Hiking Trail, Border Route Trail and the Kekekabic Trail into the North Country National Scenic Trail. The measure, which will proceed to the full House for final passage, brings the trail’s total length to approximately 4,600 miles and extends the route into Vermont from its current terminus near Crown Point, NY.
Nolan noted that the plan doesn’t involve any new dollars or require taking any land through eminent domain or condemnation. The new route skirts around and protects about 100 miles of environmentally sensitive bogs and wetlands that had been included in an earlier suggested route but had not been built.

Mon
16
Apr

Public comment sought on Minnesota’s first deer plan

The Minnesota DNR has released a draft copy of a statewide deer plan. An open house will be held Wednesday from 6-8 p.m. at the in Mt. Iron.
For hunters in the northeast portion of the state, the plan puts moose over deer. The DNR will continue to set low deer population goals wherever moose are present.
“From a moose management perspective, the most feasible and potentially effective management strategy to reduce this negative impact on the moose population is to maintain deer densities on their shared range as low as practical,” the plan states.
Anyone interested in deer can comment on Minnesota’s draft statewide deer management plan now through Wednesday, May 9.
Comments can be submitted online at mndnr.gov/deerplan or at the 35 public open houses being held around the state in April where people can talk to wildlife managers, ask questions and provide input.

Fri
13
Apr

On the lookout

UP A TREE and up the Fernberg Trail was this handsome pine marten. Photo by Pam Roberts

Fri
06
Apr

Bear hunt applications available; May 4 deadline

Applications for bear hunting licenses are being accepted now through Friday, May 4, wherever Minnesota hunting and fishing license are sold, online at mndnr.gov/buyalicense and by telephone at 888-665-4236.
A total of 3,350 licenses are available in 13 permit areas. Bear licenses cost $44 for residents and $230 for nonresidents, and there is a $5 application fee. The season is open from Saturday, Sept. 1, through Sunday, Oct. 14.
Notification to lottery winners will be made by Friday, June 1. The deadline to purchase licenses awarded by lottery will be Wednesday, Aug. 1. Any remaining unpurchased licenses will be available over the counter starting at noon on Monday, Aug. 6.
An unlimited number of bear licenses will be sold over-the-counter for the no-quota area that includes east-central and far northwestern Minnesota. No-quota licenses are valid only in the no-quota area. Hunters with a no-quota license can harvest one bear.

Thu
05
Apr

New northern pike fishing regulations here for opener

New regulations for catching and keeping northern pike will be the most significant change anglers will see when they open up the 2018 Minnesota Fishing Regulations Booklet being distributed throughout the state.
“Anyone who wants to keep pike in Minnesota’s inland waters needs to take a close look at these regulations and be prepared to measure the pike they want to keep starting on the Saturday, May 12, fishing opener,” said Al Stevens, fisheries program consultant with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.
The new fishing regulations have three distinct zones to address the different characteristics of pike populations in Minnesota. While not designed to manage for trophy pike, the new regulations are meant to restore pike populations for better harvest opportunities across the state for sizes that make good table fare, up to around 28 inches or so.

Mon
02
Apr

Sheriff's Office issues warning about water skipping snowmobiles

The St. Louis County Sheriff's Office, in conjunction with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, is issuing a public notice to those that plan on participating in any water skipping activities that this practice is not allowed and those participating will be cited under Minnesota Statute 84.87 Sub 2 which states: It shall be unlawful for any person to drive or operate any snowmobile in the following unsafe or harassing ways:
• at a rate of speed greater than reasonable or proper under all the surrounding circumstances;
• in a careless, reckless or negligent manner so as to endanger the person or property of another or to cause injury or damage thereto;
• without a lighted head and taillight when required for safety; or
• in any tree nursery or planting in a manner which damages or destroys growing stock

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