Snowmobile races in Winton August 13-14

The International Watercross Association will make a stop in Winton Aug. 13-14.
Snowmobiles will race on Fall Lake both days starting at 10 a.m. with live entertainment Saturday night.
“We are very excited to bring this event back for the 11th year in a row,” said committee member Kristi Mattila. “Having this here helps the economy with the racers and families that come in for the weekend.”
New this year will be a novice race on Saturday to encourage people to try racing snowmobiles on water.
“We’re calling to the Boundary Waters Cup, it’s a novice race to promote to get new racers in the sport. It’s just a $25 entry fee and as long as you have a tether on your sled, a helmet and a life jacket you can race,” said Mattila.
Anyone is interested in trying the Boundary Waters Cup they can call Kristi Mattila at 235-8940 for more information.
Returning this year will be the fundraiser race, Last Man Standing.


DNR offers tips to private forest owners dealing with storm damage

The recent blowdown in northern Minnesota caused major damage to state lands, as well as private forest lands. While landowners are not required to clean up downed trees and debris, the Department of Natural Resources is encouraging private forest owners and homeowners to consider salvaging and replacing damaged areas.

“Salvage and cleanup will likely be necessary to regenerate the forest and reduce the potential for wildfires and outbreak of insects and diseases,” said John Carlson, DNR private forest management coordinator. “The first step is to assess the extent of the damage and determine whether a timber sale is needed.”

Working in storm-damaged areas is dangerous; so Carlson strongly recommends that only foresters, loggers or tree care companies do the work. Consider hiring a consulting forester to help assess, sell and replant damaged forests.


ATV safety class offered by Minnesota DNR and Prospectors Loop Alliance in Tower this August

There will be a field day for the Minnesota ATV Safety Course on August 27 at 9 a.m. until approximately 1 p.m. at the Tower DNR Building.
A knowledge test and information session will be set up in the morning and a skills test on operating will be set up immediately after.
• Youth ages 11 and older can attend an ATV safety certification course and receive their certificate. The ATV Safety Certificate becomes valid at age 12.
• DNR ATV Certification is required of anyone born after July 7, 1987 to operate a ATV on public land in Minnesota.
The students will be asked to complete the online ATV safety course before the start of the class on Aug. 27.
Follow the links from the Minnesota DNR website at the top of the page click on (Education/Safety), from the drop down pick (Recreational Vehicle Safety Classes), next chose ATV Safety, from here you can read the options available.


Take a close look at Banded Jasper

by Bill Teftt. Photography by Ken Hupila of Snotty Moose Studio.


‘Operation Dry Water’ enhanced BWI enforcement in effect statewide, June 24-26

Conservation Officer Adam Block on patrol.

In an effort to curb alcohol- and drug-related boating accidents and deaths, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources conservation officers and hundreds of other public safety officers are ramping up patrols for intoxicated boaters this weekend, June 24-26.

The enhanced enforcement efforts are part of Operation Dry Water – a nationwide annual campaign designed to draw more attention to the dangers of boating under the influence of drugs or alcohol, and the strict penalties in place for boating while intoxicated (BWI).

“We have zero tolerance for anyone found operating a boat under the influence of alcohol or drugs,” said DNR Conservation Officer Adam Block. “Drunk boating is drunk driving, and carries the same consequences. Intoxicated boat operators will not get a warning; they will be arrested.”


DNR will spray herbicide to improve reforestation

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources will begin herbicide applications on select state lands to improve reforestation efforts.
Applications will begin around July 15 and continue through approximately Sept. 15 to 70 acres.
“Herbicides will be sprayed on the ground to reduce competing woody vegetation,” said Dave Sopoci, Tower area forester. “This gives the tree seedlings a better chance to grow and survive.”
Herbicides will not be applied within 100 feet of any water body.
Signs will be posted on all herbicide treatment sites. Adjacent landowners within a quarter mile of the treatment sites have already been notified.
The DNR plants trees on state lands to reforest harvested areas, provide wildlife habitat, protect watersheds and maintain healthy state forests.


It’s orchid time again

With 30 species of wild orchids found in the Arrowhead Region of Minnesota, along with the breeding bird checklists that get pulled from a file electronic or otherwise, orchid enthusiasts are reviewing their orchid list. From the early spring appearance of fairy slippers, one after another species comes into bloom. A number of other orchids will be blooming soon including the ever popular variety of lady’s slipper species that look like small moccasins.
1. Dragon’s Mouth (Wild Pink), Arethusa bulbosa
2. Tuberous Grass Pink, Calopogon tuberosus
3. Fairy Slipper (Calypso), Calypso bulbosa var. americana
4. Spotted Coral-root, Corallorhiza maculata
5. Striped Coral-root, Corallorhiza striata
6. Early Coral-root, Corallorhiza trifida
7. Stemless Lady’s Slipper (Moccasin Flower), Cypripedium acaule
8. Ram’s Head Orchid, Cypripedium arietinum
9. Small Yellow Lady’s Slipper, Cypripedium parviflorum var. makasin


MDA to start gypsy moth fight in Ely

The Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) is preparing to treat approximately 570 acres near Two Harbors and 565 acres in Ely to eradicate gypsy moth infestations detected last fall. Officials will conduct the treatments starting sometime between June 1 and June 15, with the exact date determined by weather conditions and caterpillar development.
In 2015, MDA’s trapping program identified these two isolated pockets of gypsy moth in the northeastern part of the state. Because of their locations, officials believe the gypsy moths likely arrived at the Ely and Two Harbors sites because of human activity.


North Country Angler - Biggest bass this week

BIGGEST BASS this week was the 22” smallmouth caught by Jessica Shaver, South Range, WI on a minnow in Shagawa Lake while a guest at Silver Rapids Lodge.


Backpackers first in two years to hike BWCA Pow Wow Trail

At the trailhead, l-r, Susan Pollock, Paul Ebert, Paul Stelter, Martin Kubik


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