ATV safety course to be held on July 9

The Prospectors ATV Club will be conducting ATV training class on July 9 at the Longbranch in Winton.
Contact instructor, Mike Banovetz at 218-235-9969. Leave a voice message with a phone number or better yet send a text message.
This course has been registered with the DNR, so please do not wait to get your kids registered.
The class will start at 10 a.m. Lunch at noon and field testing will be from 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Pizza and water will be provided for lunch.
Each student must complete the on-line segment and bring their certificate with them to class.
Each student must be accompanied by a parent or qualified guardian like a grandparent who will be required to sign a release form.
Also each student needs to bring their own helmet. Long pants are required, no shorts. No sandals or flip flops, tennis shoes or outdoor boots are required.
More information is available on the following link for the on-line course;


International Wolf Center to add two pups

The International Wolf Center is adding two pups to its Exhibit Pack in 2022. The pups arrived at the Center on Tuesday, May 10.
The 2022 pups will be visible to the public starting on approximately Friday, June 3.
The Center believes in wolf education, and one method for accomplishing the Center’s mission of advancing survival of wolf populations in the wild is through the use of ambassador wolves.
“These ambassador wolves allow us to teach thousands of people a year about the real behavior of wolves,” said Lori Schmidt, the Center’s wolf curator. “The Exhibit Pack is also a key part of the online programs we offer to schools across the world. These ambassadors are a key part of our aim to teach the world about wolves.”


We have a winner! Ice out on May 10

A strong wind storm blew into Ely Monday night and by Tuesday morning, Shagawa reached ice out.
The Ely Echo/Grand Ely Lodge official ice out on Shagawa Lake was Tuesday, May 10, 2022 at 6:40 a.m. as called by Tammy Kisch and Joy Fedders.
Winning this year’s contest and $100 in Grand Ely Lodge Guest Bucks was Nancy Kirkpatrik of Saybrook, IL who picked May 10 at 10:10 a.m.
Coming in second place and winning a $50 Ely Echo gift certificate was Bernard Brula of Franklin Park, IL who guessed May 10 at 2:10 p.m.
Lindi Zemke of Ely took third and won $25 in Grand Ely Lodge bucks for picking May 9 at 2:30 p.m.
The Ely Echo Grand Ely Lodge Shagawa Lake Ice Out Contest is official when a boat could leave Grand Ely Lodge’s dock and cross to the north side of the lake, chunks of ice notwithstanding.
Thank you to everyone who entered and to Grand Ely Lodge for all of their help. Get your guesses ready for 2023!


Ice still on lakes, flooding on some roads

Due to the lingering winter conditions, Forest Service fee campgrounds are now expected to open around May 12.
Although it is starting to warm up, there is still a lot of snow; conditions vary across the forest.
Water services will be turned on when temperatures allow and may not be available on opening dates.
Visitors with reservations prior to the new opening dates will be reimbursed.
Many gravel roads are in rough condition due to late snow conditions this year.
As the snow melts it also can cause flooding and very muddy roads. Please practice caution and stay off of them if you can to prevent permanent damage!
Road Closures: Grassy Creek Road, known as Grassy Lake Road (Forest Road 459) is closed approx. 2.7 miles from the beginning of the road due to flooding. Mudro entry points, off of the Grassy Creek Road, are inaccessible at this time.


Boundary Waters Canoe Area quota permit season begins on May 1

The Forest Service quota permit season for overnight paddle, hiking and motor trips, and motorized day trips begins on May 1 in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. Wintery conditions are lingering in the Arrowhead Region with variable amounts of snow remaining and ice-covered lakes.
Visitors with permits in the early part of the permit season should check conditions ahead of time by calling the Forest Service local district office or their outfitter/guide and adjust trip plans accordingly.
Picking up your permit:
• Forest Service offices and BWCAW cooperators are open and issuing permits in-person; visit recreation.gov for hours and locations of “Issue Stations.”


Snow, cold temperatures will delay opening of some U.S. Forest Service campgrounds

The U.S. Forest Service is preparing to open fee campgrounds across the forest, but due to snow and cold temperatures lingering in northern Minnesota this spring, some campgrounds will open later than originally planned.
Forest Service staff anticipate that fee (both reservation and first come, first served) campgrounds will open between May 6 and May 12. Water services will be turned on when temperatures allow and may not be available on opening dates. Visitors with reservations prior to the new opening dates will be reimbursed.
Opening dates vary by campground and dates may be further delayed if cold temperatures and snow persist. Some Forest Service campgrounds are currently inaccessible due to snow levels.


First Kids Fishing Derby on for June

by Tom Coombe
After a couple of false starts, a new event aimed at promoting fishing to area youth will get off the ground in June.
The first Northwoods Kids Fishing Derby is set for Saturday, June 11 at Veterans on the Lake.
Open to youth ages 6-14, the event combines fishing with skills, art and water education and promises to be a fun day for all.
The event is sponsored by the Ely Chamber of Commerce and was first set for 2020.
“And then this crazy thing called Covid hit,” said Eva Sebesta, executive director of the Ely Chamber of Commerce.
Registration has begun and will be open until May 1, with up to 40 spots available in the event.
Each participant will receive a free rod and reel, t-shirt, bandana, and a fishing derby bling bag filled with goodies.
Four components are planned to the event.


Moose population showing signs of life

by Jesse White
Mesabi Tribune
TOWER — There was a time not too long ago when state wildlife biologists wondered if the rapid decline of the moose population in northeastern Minnesota would ever slow down.
After peaking at an estimated 8,840 animals in 2006, the population in Minnesota’s Arrowhead region plummeted over the next several years.
In 2014, the DNR estimated the population to be approximately 2,760, down 35 percent from 2012 and 52 percent from 2010.
At the time, scientists suspected some combination of higher temperatures, parasites, diseases and changing habitat were the cause of the mortality officials were seeing.
That same year the Minnesota DNR canceled the moose hunting season, which hasn’t returned since.


Prevent conflicts with bears with these spring tips from the DNR

With bears emerging from hibernation in the coming weeks, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources reminds homeowners to check their property for food sources that could attract bears.
“Please take the time now to remove or secure anything that could attract a bear,” said Eric Nelson, DNR wildlife damage program supervisor. “Prevention is key. Once a bear finds a food source, it will likely return again.”
As bears emerge from hibernation, their metabolism gradually ramps up and they will begin looking for food at a time when berries and green vegetation are scarce.
Home and cabin owners should remove or secure attractants such as birdseed, garbage, livestock feed, or compost to reduce potential conflicts.
Black bears are the only bear species that lives in the wild in Minnesota. Bears are more common in the forested region of northern Minnesota but can live anywhere in the state if they find an area of suitable habitat.


CWD in Grand Rapids wild deer prompts DNR to update to statewide approach

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is updating its chronic wasting disease response plan after the discovery of a wild white-tailed deer infected with CWD within the city of Grand Rapids. The response plan update will better reflect a statewide approach to disease surveillance, management, control and education.
This is the first time CWD has been detected in wild deer in this deer permit area, so the DNR is also taking immediate steps to understand the prevalence of the disease in wild deer in the Grand Rapids area. The agency will work with local road authorities to collect samples from road-killed deer and is exploring opportunities for targeted culling where it can be performed safely.


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