Guests - If You want access to member only forums on FM. You will gain access only when you Sign-in or Sign-Up on Fishing Minnesota.

It's easy - LOOK UPPER right menu.

Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
Down Deep

Snowshoes

9 posts in this topic

I posted this on the equipment index, but I figured the northern MN FM'ers would have some insight about snowshoes.

I've been researching snowshoes. I'm looking to hike around the woods in Northern MN. I'm only interested the metal frame styles. Atlas seems to be a quality shoe. Any information or recommendations you can provide would be appreciated. Also what type of boot, clothing and poles should I buy.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Poles for snowshoeing?

You've been reading a few too many articles written by folks who haven't done much tromping around in the northwoods.

The neoprene decked/aluminum framed things look pretty neat in the pictures of magazines, but might not get the job done in NE Minnesota in the dead of winter - unless you're using snowmobile trails or other established routes. If you're planning on using pre-existing trails, they will probably get you to where you're going.

The flotation of the Atlas and Tubbs and other high-tech shoes is vastly over-rated. Take the ratings with a bag (and not a grain) of salt.

Get yourself a decent pair of traditional snowshoes, log a few miles, and then start playing around with how you wish to change or upgrade things.

Back in college days I recall heading up Kenwood Avenue to the liquor store to lay in supplies on my wood and rawhide shoes, while Duluth was basically shut down due to a snowstorm. On one such run I was beating a trail through the drifts near Toledo so the police could get their snowmobiles through. I'll guarantee you that the "modern" snowshoes would have left me floundering, instead of moving along nicely.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Jackpine is absolutley right on as usual. I don't know what the poles would be for. We rent out metal snowshoes but I've never tried them. I've had a pair of wooden ones for 20 years and they work great. It's been so long, but I think they're called Bearpaws.(They have the neopreme(sp)webbing.) They don't have the long tail and they're more of a rounded off rectangle shape. I don't use them as much as I used to. But I still strap them on a few times a year in the early spring for hunting moose shed.

I wasn't aware that they made a special boot for snowshoeing . I would recommend getting the best pair of paks that you can afford. Then you can use them for everything else in the winter. The great thing about snowshoeing is being able to go anywhere in the woods and you don't need alot of extra equipment. For clothing I'm a big believer in wool but my kids tell me I'm stuck in the last century when it comes to fashion. Does anyone know where I can get a few pairs of Zubas? All mine are getting thread bare. blush.gif

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, I tip the scale at about 250, so there's no shoe that really floats my boat well, if you know what I mean.

In one way, I'm with Rob. I have the ash/rawhide traditional Michigan or teardrop style with the latex rubber slip on binding. I'm on these shoes many days each winter up here, whether on photo excursions or just out to be out. They are a little cumbersome in the woods because of their length. Bearpaws are the traditional heavy-woods design, with the long narrow cross-country for open areas and my style for in-between.

I have, however, snowshoed extensively on Atlas and Sherpa shoes. I have had much better luck with them than Rob apparently has. They are simpler to use, and the integral binding systems are great if you like that sense of security because your bindings don't slip around all over the place like they do on traditional shoes when you come down on uneven ground. The cleats embedded in the bottom of the binding on the new styles also make it nice when you happen on a windblown, hilly stretch, where the snow is packed and the surface more slippery.

That being said, I always have to bump up a size from what the flotation ratings say, regardless of which style we're talking about. And that's a good piece of advice.

Pole are hard to use in the woods. They generally get in the way more than anything. However, if you're not experienced on snowshoes and are staying mostly on trails, they're great to have.

I stick with the wood/rawhide for two reasons: They're a lot less expensive than the aluminum/neoprene premium models, and I like the tradition and history of the wood/rawhide. And because the bindings lay perfectly flat on my shoes, I can stick them behind the seat in my pickup, where they stay all winter when I'm not using them.

I always snowshoe in my Steger mukluks. They are overrated in some categories, especially if you listen to the manufacturer's hype, but for a few applications there is no better footwear out there, and snowshoeing is one of those applications.

Clothing is the same for any kind of active winter activity. Layers are the key, because you'll be starting and stopping, working and resting, and you may have add/shed as you go. Long underwear in synthetics like polypropylene and wool blends, as well as silk, will keep moisture away from your body. If you're going to sweat, never wear cotton next to your skin in the cold weather, because it holds the moisture against your skin, chilling you. Fleece is great as a layer, but not as the layer by your skin. I typically use long underwear like I've described, then a layer of wool, then fleece, then a lightweight outer shell. All depends on how cold it is.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Snow Travel. Consider snowshoes like a fishing pole. Lots of different sizes and styles. There isn't one that will best cover all conditions but if I had to pick only one it be a wood/leather Yukon or Beavertail. Why because I want enough flotation in deep snow to stay on top. If I'm busting though to my knees I'm using the wrong tool and I might as well take a smaller shoe off.

So why do they make the smaller shoes if they can't hold you up? I'll use our trip into Trout lake for an example. Snow depth maybe 10" of packed wind blown snow. Didn't need any flotation, what I needed was traction. You know what I mean, you take a step and your foot sinks in a few inchs. As you continue your stride your foot peels in the hard pack. Couple that with pulling a sled over 5 miles and it gets annoying. A smaller shoe, in this case my 8x 20" aluminum/synthetic shoes would have been the perfect tool for the job. In deep powder forget it, I'd take my Beaver tails.

Footwear depends on temps, how far your trekking, and what you'll be doing when you get there. Muks would be nice if its cold and you'll be spending time on the ice fishing. I've got a pair of Muck Boots.

and they are perfect for snowshoeing. Lightweight and warm enough to sit on the lake in temps above 0.

Pack style boots work fine too.

Don't forget about x-country skies and hybreds. Hybreds being shorter and wider version of a x-country ski.

I've got the two styles of shoes, x-country skies and if I can't get there with those I'll jump on the snowmobile.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I snowshoe alot, and own several pairs of traditional alaskan style shoes that I have been very pleased with, although some of the new aluminum ones look very interesting. On the subject of poles though, I use them almost all of the time. If you are snowshoeing for exercise you will get a much better workout, and on hilly terrain they are invaluable for maintaining your balance. If you are pulling a sled (say, for instance into Trout Lake) they really help. About the only time that I don't use them is when carrying a shotgun in thick woods. I just bought a couple of pairs of old cross country ski poles and they work fine. As we age and the potential bad consequences of a nasty fall increase the poles really help to keep that from happening. On a side note, what do some of you guys use for oiling the rawhide of your shoes to keep them supple. I blew out a shoe last winter and I am pretty sure it was because the rawhide was dry and hard. Thanks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My snowshoe maintenance is pretty simple. When I start to see wear on the edges/tail area, I'll run some fine grit sandpaper over any rough areas in the wood, hang them up in the garage and apply a light coat or two of marine varnish. My current pair of modified Alaskans is over 30 years old and going strong.

Another possibility and one that several of my friends and family have gone to is the military surplus shoes. These things have a white metal frame (Michigan style) and the webbing is coated aircraft cable. They look to be pretty much indestructible, and I've not heard any complaints about flotation. One of the benefits of this particular shoe appears to be in slush conditions - you can knock the frozen slush off pretty easily without damage to the shoe, and the smooth cables come clean quickly.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You should at least look into a Minnesota company (Wilcox and Williams who offer ash frame snowshoes with flat nylon webbing. When the webbing is varnished/urethaned it looks much like the tradional rawhide lacing but is much more durable. They offer several models but their flagship is the Ojibwa with a pointed toe. They are great for going through brush and over open lakes. They have kits too. They are pleasing and functional.

Please read posting rules. Thanks, Northlander

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hey spivak:

Welcome to FM. Good to have you here. grin.gif

I remember those snowshoes you mentioned. I haven't used them but I did a story years ago on a group who bought the kits and was using them. They looked good. I also hear the Ojibwes go through the brush better than the Michigans, which I have. My fronts are rounded, and I've read the pointed fronts on the Ojibwe make them easier to go through the undergrowth than any other style of shoe.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0

  • Posts

    • Cliff Wagenbach

      Posted

      The trees are turning color fast now! Seems to gain color by the hour now!

      Cliff

    • Driving a scenic route through a state forest is a great way to view fall color, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.  

      Finland State Forest

      Finland State Forest

      “Routes through hilly or rugged areas dominated by deciduous trees tend to have the best mix of color,” said Jennifer Teegarden, DNR forestry outreach specialist. “And the dark green needles of conifers accent the yellow, orange and red leaves of deciduous trees in mixed forest.”

      Here are a few state forests routes to consider:

      Late September

      • Finland State Forest heading northeast along County Road 7 from Finland.

      Early October

      • Bowstring and Blackduck state forests along state Highway 46 between Deer River and Northome.
      • Pillsbury State Forest along Beauty Lake Forest Road between County Road 77 and County Road 1.
      • St. Croix and Nemadji state forests loop. From Interstate 35, take exit #183 and head east on state Highway 48. Head north on County Road 24. Head east on County Road 24. At Markville, head north on County Road 31. Head west on Park Forest Road. At Kerrick, head south on state Highway 23 to Interstate 35 exit #195.

      Mid-October

      • Richard J. Dorer Memorial Hardwood State Forest has two good options. Along Zumbro Bottoms Road off of state Highway 60 southwest of Wabasha. Along state Highway 16 between Interstate 90 and state Highway 26.

      Visit www.mndnr.gov/stateforests for information about visiting a state forest and additional scenic routes. Entrance into a state forest is free. State forest campsites are available on a first-come, first-served basis for $14 a night.

      Visit the Minnesota state parks and trails Fall Color Finder at www.mndnr.gov/fall_colors to find areas in Minnesota with peak fall color. The Fall Color Finder is updated every Thursday through the end of October.

      Discuss below - to view set the hook here.

    • A southeastern Minnesota stream reflects brilliantly colored leaves in fall – until the splash of a trout on the end of an angler’s line breaks the surface. Anglers can enjoy scenes like these now through a variety of fall trout fishing opportunities.  

      north-branch-whitewater-river_govdelivery2“Fall is a beautiful time to experience trout fishing in streams in southeastern Minnesota,” said Brian Nerbonne, stream habitat consultant with the Department of Natural Resources. “Anglers are fewer, the scenery can be awe inspiring and fishing can be quite good.”

      In most of the state, trout fishing is open until Friday, Sept. 30. However, anglers can make a longer go at it in southeastern Minnesota streams.

      Catch-and-release trout fishing is open through Saturday, Oct. 15, on streams in the southeastern Minnesota counties of Dodge, Fillmore, Goodhue, Houston, Mower, Olmsted, Wabasha and Winona. In these counties, fishing then reopens for a winter catch-and-release season that runs Sunday, Jan. 1, to Friday, April 14, 2017.

      For even more fishing, anglers who want to trout fish all year long can do so in streams in Beaver Creek Valley, Forestville and Whitewater state parks, whether through a catch-and-release or harvest season depending on the time of year.

      “If you think trout are hard to catch in winter, consider the research over the last year that shows trout continue to feed heavily in winter,” Nerbonne said. “Different teams of researchers found trout with anywhere from 30 to more than 100 prey items in their stomachs, depending on the study.”

      Vaughn Snook, Lanesboro assistant area fisheries supervisor, said numbers of brown trout longer than 12 inches are at record highs or close to it on some trout streams in southeastern Minnesota.

      “Now is the time to take advantage of those great fish. Numbers of young trout look good for coming years,” Snook said.

      Reports of anglers using hopper patterns (grasshopper imitating flies) have been good in areas thick with grass. Grasshoppers will become active, and thus more likely to fall into the stream, as the sun warms their bodies in the afternoon. Blue-winged olive hatches (try using no. 20-22 olive mayfly) will be seen until the first frost, sometimes even after.

      Because both brown trout and brook trout become aggressive in the fall, closer to their spawning time, anglers should also consider presenting streamers (minnow imitating flies) in deep runs and pools.

      “Numerous brown trout over 20 inches have been reportedly caught by anglers already this late summer and fall period,” Snook said.

      Minnesota has 3,817 miles of designated trout streams, plus 2,699 miles of designated trout stream tributaries. In 2015, the state’s five coldwater hatcheries produced 1.7 million fingerlings, yearlings and adult fish for stocking in 75 streams and 158 lakes – roughly 201 tons of fish. Last year, 106,463 anglers purchased a validation required to fish for trout, an all-time high. However, fewer anglers tend to fish in the fall.

      Anglers fishing on designated trout waters must have a trout stamp in addition to an angling license. Maps showing trout fishing locations in southern Minnesota, as well as other information on trout fishing, can be found at www.mndnr.gov/fishing/trout_streams.

      Discuss below - to view set the hook here.

    • Hunters who were not chosen in the lottery to receive an antlerless deer permit can obtain one of 12 surplus antlerless permits for deer permit area 260, which covers the northwest corner of Minnesota and borders North Dakota and Manitoba. 

      Permits will be available starting 5 p.m. Monday, Oct. 3, on a first come, first served basis, anywhere DNR licenses are sold, or online on the buy a license page. Both residents and nonresidents can purchase these permits but must first purchase a firearms or muzzleloader deer license. Permits purchased online will be mailed. Orders by telephone will not be accepted.

      In lottery deer areas, including permit area 260, firearm and muzzleloader license holders who intend to take an antlerless deer must possess an antlerless permit; otherwise, they are restricted to hunting bucks. The total bag limit for deer in lottery areas is one deer per year.

      To stay informed about the deer management and other important deer-related topics visit the deer page and to receive updates via email, consider subscribing to the Deer Notes email list by entering an email address at the bottom of the page.

      The DNR works to protect and maintain Minnesota’s white-tailed deer. The deer population, which varies in density from place to place and year to year, is dependent on adequate habitat and directly influenced by the severity of winter weather. Deer are ecologically, socially and economically important in a state where hunting and wildlife watching generate more than $1.3 billion in annual economic impacts.

      Discuss below - to view set the hook here.

    • Pheasant hunting can put food on the table, supports grassland conservation and is a fun sport that doesn’t require a lot of specialized or expensive equipment.

      Once you’ve identified some areas you might hunt – the hunting usually takes place in grasslands or frozen wetlands – there are a few things to consider to make the most of time in the field once the Minnesota pheasant season opens on Saturday, Oct. 15.

      Here are some tips from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.

      Regulations handbook and hunting license
      A small game license and pheasant stamp are required. Hunting regulations are covered in the 2016 Minnesota Hunting and Trapping Regulations Handbook. Licenses are available at the buy a license page  or in person at any DNR license vendor, and handbooks are also available there or online at the hunting regulations page. Hunting licenses are also available by phone, any time, by calling 888-665-4236. Don’t forget a $3 Walk-In Access validation, so you can hunt another 23,000-plus acres of private land.

      Maps
      Scouting an area will increase your odds of finding pheasants and good maps will help your efforts. Visit the wildlife management areas page for free online, interactive maps that identify wildlife management areas and Walk-In Access areas. Combined, these programs provide over 400,000 acres of public hunting land in Minnesota’s farmland zone. A local plat book may also come in handy to identify specific pieces of land.

      Shotgun and shells
      The best shotgun is one you are comfortable with. The style or gauge isn’t nearly as important as your ability to use it. Since pheasants are fairly tough birds, choose a load such as 4 or 5 shot and limit your shooting distances to 40 yards or less. This will result in fewer wounded birds. Nontoxic shot is required on federal land and many hunters prefer to use it any time they’re in the field.

      Blaze orange
      Minnesota pheasant hunters are required to wear at least one visible article of clothing above the waist that is blaze orange. This could be a hat, jacket or hunting vest. Consider that the more blaze orange you wear, the more visible you’ll be to other hunters.

      Good footwear  
      Pheasant hunting involves lots of walking on uneven terrain. Good quality, above-the-ankle shoes or boots will provide comfort and support for a day in the field. Since crossing creeks and marshy areas is common, many hunters prefer waterproof boots.

      Layered clothing
      Cool fall mornings often turn into sunny, warm afternoons. Layered clothing will prepare you for a variety of weather conditions. Long sleeves and gloves will help keep you from getting scratched up when moving through tall grass, cattails or woody cover. Hunting chaps or brush pants are an option to protect your legs and keep you dry on mornings when the grass is wet.

      Eye and ear protection
      Any time you use a firearm, protect your eyes and ears. Sunglasses and foam ear plugs provide basic protection. More expensive options include coated, colored, high impact lenses and digital hearing aids that enhance some sounds while protecting ears from loud noises.

      A good dog
      A dog is not required to hunt pheasants, but a good hunting dog will be a companion in the field and increase chances to harvest and recover birds. Be aware that owning a hunting dog is a year-round commitment of care and training. Be sure you’re willing to invest significant time and energy before taking on the responsibility of a dog.

      Refreshments
      Be sure to carry at least two bottles of water in the field and have jugs of water at your vehicle. Water your dog and yourself, often. Bring snacks to keep your energy level up and consider canine energy bars for your dog.

      Finally, grassland habitat is the key to supporting pheasant populations, and much work remains to improve pheasant habitat in Minnesota. The grasslands that support pheasants have multiple important benefits for people, other wildlife, pollinators, water quality and local economies.

      To learn more about pheasant hunting, as well as about what the DNR and partner organizations are doing to improve pheasant habitat, visit the pheasant page.

      Discuss below - to view set the hook here.

    • Minnesotans who would like to serve on committees that review how the Department of Natural Resources spends Game and Fish Fund dollars are welcome to submit an application by Monday, Oct. 10. 

      The DNR is seeking at least 12 people to serve on the Fisheries Oversight and Wildlife Oversight committees. Appointees will be responsible for reviewing the agency’s annual Game and Fish Fund Report in detail and, following discussions with agency leaders and others, write a report on the findings of this review. About half of the current members’ terms expire on Wednesday, Dec. 14, and are subject to this open application.

      The two committees are comprised of members identified through a self-nomination process. Those who want to serve on the committees should have a strong interest in natural resource management and how it is funded. DNR Commissioner Tom Landwehr will appoint committee members for three-year terms. Applications are being accepted online until Oct. 10.

      Though not well known, Minnesota’s Game and Fish Fund is the fiscal foundation for much of the state’s core natural resource management functions. Upwards of $95 million a year is deposited into this fund from hunting and fishing license sales, federal excise taxes on hunting and fishing equipment and related items, and a portion of a sales tax equivalent on state lottery tickets. The dollars that flow into this fund pay for the fish, wildlife, enforcement, and ecological management that support 48,000 jobs in Minnesota’s outdoor recreation and hospitality business.

      Interested applicants can learn more by reviewing past Game and Fish Fund reports on the game and fish oversight page.

      Discuss below - to view set the hook here.

    • SkunkedAgain

      Posted

      Yup, some sparse reds here and there but trees are definitely turning yellow and some dropping leaves already. Beautiful

    • SkunkedAgain

      Posted (edited)

      Maybe there is a market out there for higher end food on Vermilion. If I were in the restaurant business and felt that way, I would probably operate that restaurant on the other end of the lake where it stands out from the competition and benefits from the higher population density and bigger cabins/wealth.

      In my mind, what the west end has always wanted is a fun place to hang out, get a beer, and swap fishing tales. You don't need $20 bloody mary's to do that or $12 burgers. Most people would be happy with a Heggie's pizza, some wings, or nachos with melted cheese....accompanied by a mug of Schells/Leinie's/Bud and your occasional can or bottle of something more fancy like a Surly. No need to make this a high-end sushi joint or something that it's really not.

      Those seeking a fancy meal will seek it out as necessary. The masses will just avoid the joint if it isn't to their liking.

      Edited by SkunkedAgain
    • BSLNORTH

      Posted

      We did pretty well duck hunting and I thought there was a lot of shooting around. Spent a few hours in the woods checking stands and didn't see one grouse. Lots of deer sign.

    • rundrave

      Posted

      I think you need to go back to basics. What you are trying to do doesn't have to be reinforced in just the boat.

      You need that dog to obey and listen to each command you give. If you are trying to get her to sit/stay then that's what you need to work on.

      You can practice and work on that command every time you open the door to the kennel to let the dog out. You tell her to sit/stay and you open the door. If she doesn't you know close the door and repeat.

      Every time you give your dog a bowl of food don't just give it to her make her sit/stay before she get its. There are  varieties of situation that the sit command can be used for. Start with small exercises and work your way up to bigger more complicated tasks, repetition, repetition repetition. Be sure to praise and always try to end work on a positive note. 

      I think the most important thing is don't give a command you cant reinforce.



  • Posts

    • Cliff Wagenbach
      The trees are turning color fast now! Seems to gain color by the hour now! Cliff
    • Rick
      Driving a scenic route through a state forest is a great way to view fall color, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.   Finland State Forest “Routes through hilly or rugged areas dominated by deciduous trees tend to have the best mix of color,” said Jennifer Teegarden, DNR forestry outreach specialist. “And the dark green needles of conifers accent the yellow, orange and red leaves of deciduous trees in mixed forest.” Here are a few state forests routes to consider: Late September Finland State Forest heading northeast along County Road 7 from Finland. Early October Bowstring and Blackduck state forests along state Highway 46 between Deer River and Northome. Pillsbury State Forest along Beauty Lake Forest Road between County Road 77 and County Road 1. St. Croix and Nemadji state forests loop. From Interstate 35, take exit #183 and head east on state Highway 48. Head north on County Road 24. Head east on County Road 24. At Markville, head north on County Road 31. Head west on Park Forest Road. At Kerrick, head south on state Highway 23 to Interstate 35 exit #195. Mid-October Richard J. Dorer Memorial Hardwood State Forest has two good options. Along Zumbro Bottoms Road off of state Highway 60 southwest of Wabasha. Along state Highway 16 between Interstate 90 and state Highway 26. Visit www.mndnr.gov/stateforests for information about visiting a state forest and additional scenic routes. Entrance into a state forest is free. State forest campsites are available on a first-come, first-served basis for $14 a night. Visit the Minnesota state parks and trails Fall Color Finder at www.mndnr.gov/fall_colors to find areas in Minnesota with peak fall color. The Fall Color Finder is updated every Thursday through the end of October. Discuss below - to view set the hook here.
    • Rick
      A southeastern Minnesota stream reflects brilliantly colored leaves in fall – until the splash of a trout on the end of an angler’s line breaks the surface. Anglers can enjoy scenes like these now through a variety of fall trout fishing opportunities.   “Fall is a beautiful time to experience trout fishing in streams in southeastern Minnesota,” said Brian Nerbonne, stream habitat consultant with the Department of Natural Resources. “Anglers are fewer, the scenery can be awe inspiring and fishing can be quite good.” In most of the state, trout fishing is open until Friday, Sept. 30. However, anglers can make a longer go at it in southeastern Minnesota streams. Catch-and-release trout fishing is open through Saturday, Oct. 15, on streams in the southeastern Minnesota counties of Dodge, Fillmore, Goodhue, Houston, Mower, Olmsted, Wabasha and Winona. In these counties, fishing then reopens for a winter catch-and-release season that runs Sunday, Jan. 1, to Friday, April 14, 2017. For even more fishing, anglers who want to trout fish all year long can do so in streams in Beaver Creek Valley, Forestville and Whitewater state parks, whether through a catch-and-release or harvest season depending on the time of year. “If you think trout are hard to catch in winter, consider the research over the last year that shows trout continue to feed heavily in winter,” Nerbonne said. “Different teams of researchers found trout with anywhere from 30 to more than 100 prey items in their stomachs, depending on the study.” Vaughn Snook, Lanesboro assistant area fisheries supervisor, said numbers of brown trout longer than 12 inches are at record highs or close to it on some trout streams in southeastern Minnesota. “Now is the time to take advantage of those great fish. Numbers of young trout look good for coming years,” Snook said. Reports of anglers using hopper patterns (grasshopper imitating flies) have been good in areas thick with grass. Grasshoppers will become active, and thus more likely to fall into the stream, as the sun warms their bodies in the afternoon. Blue-winged olive hatches (try using no. 20-22 olive mayfly) will be seen until the first frost, sometimes even after. Because both brown trout and brook trout become aggressive in the fall, closer to their spawning time, anglers should also consider presenting streamers (minnow imitating flies) in deep runs and pools. “Numerous brown trout over 20 inches have been reportedly caught by anglers already this late summer and fall period,” Snook said. Minnesota has 3,817 miles of designated trout streams, plus 2,699 miles of designated trout stream tributaries. In 2015, the state’s five coldwater hatcheries produced 1.7 million fingerlings, yearlings and adult fish for stocking in 75 streams and 158 lakes – roughly 201 tons of fish. Last year, 106,463 anglers purchased a validation required to fish for trout, an all-time high. However, fewer anglers tend to fish in the fall. Anglers fishing on designated trout waters must have a trout stamp in addition to an angling license. Maps showing trout fishing locations in southern Minnesota, as well as other information on trout fishing, can be found at www.mndnr.gov/fishing/trout_streams. Discuss below - to view set the hook here.
    • Rick
      Hunters who were not chosen in the lottery to receive an antlerless deer permit can obtain one of 12 surplus antlerless permits for deer permit area 260, which covers the northwest corner of Minnesota and borders North Dakota and Manitoba.  Permits will be available starting 5 p.m. Monday, Oct. 3, on a first come, first served basis, anywhere DNR licenses are sold, or online on the buy a license page. Both residents and nonresidents can purchase these permits but must first purchase a firearms or muzzleloader deer license. Permits purchased online will be mailed. Orders by telephone will not be accepted. In lottery deer areas, including permit area 260, firearm and muzzleloader license holders who intend to take an antlerless deer must possess an antlerless permit; otherwise, they are restricted to hunting bucks. The total bag limit for deer in lottery areas is one deer per year. To stay informed about the deer management and other important deer-related topics visit the deer page and to receive updates via email, consider subscribing to the Deer Notes email list by entering an email address at the bottom of the page. The DNR works to protect and maintain Minnesota’s white-tailed deer. The deer population, which varies in density from place to place and year to year, is dependent on adequate habitat and directly influenced by the severity of winter weather. Deer are ecologically, socially and economically important in a state where hunting and wildlife watching generate more than $1.3 billion in annual economic impacts. Discuss below - to view set the hook here.
    • Rick
      Pheasant hunting can put food on the table, supports grassland conservation and is a fun sport that doesn’t require a lot of specialized or expensive equipment. Once you’ve identified some areas you might hunt – the hunting usually takes place in grasslands or frozen wetlands – there are a few things to consider to make the most of time in the field once the Minnesota pheasant season opens on Saturday, Oct. 15. Here are some tips from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. Regulations handbook and hunting license
      A small game license and pheasant stamp are required. Hunting regulations are covered in the 2016 Minnesota Hunting and Trapping Regulations Handbook. Licenses are available at the buy a license page  or in person at any DNR license vendor, and handbooks are also available there or online at the hunting regulations page. Hunting licenses are also available by phone, any time, by calling 888-665-4236. Don’t forget a $3 Walk-In Access validation, so you can hunt another 23,000-plus acres of private land. Maps
      Scouting an area will increase your odds of finding pheasants and good maps will help your efforts. Visit the wildlife management areas page for free online, interactive maps that identify wildlife management areas and Walk-In Access areas. Combined, these programs provide over 400,000 acres of public hunting land in Minnesota’s farmland zone. A local plat book may also come in handy to identify specific pieces of land. Shotgun and shells
      The best shotgun is one you are comfortable with. The style or gauge isn’t nearly as important as your ability to use it. Since pheasants are fairly tough birds, choose a load such as 4 or 5 shot and limit your shooting distances to 40 yards or less. This will result in fewer wounded birds. Nontoxic shot is required on federal land and many hunters prefer to use it any time they’re in the field. Blaze orange
      Minnesota pheasant hunters are required to wear at least one visible article of clothing above the waist that is blaze orange. This could be a hat, jacket or hunting vest. Consider that the more blaze orange you wear, the more visible you’ll be to other hunters. Good footwear  
      Pheasant hunting involves lots of walking on uneven terrain. Good quality, above-the-ankle shoes or boots will provide comfort and support for a day in the field. Since crossing creeks and marshy areas is common, many hunters prefer waterproof boots. Layered clothing
      Cool fall mornings often turn into sunny, warm afternoons. Layered clothing will prepare you for a variety of weather conditions. Long sleeves and gloves will help keep you from getting scratched up when moving through tall grass, cattails or woody cover. Hunting chaps or brush pants are an option to protect your legs and keep you dry on mornings when the grass is wet. Eye and ear protection
      Any time you use a firearm, protect your eyes and ears. Sunglasses and foam ear plugs provide basic protection. More expensive options include coated, colored, high impact lenses and digital hearing aids that enhance some sounds while protecting ears from loud noises. A good dog
      A dog is not required to hunt pheasants, but a good hunting dog will be a companion in the field and increase chances to harvest and recover birds. Be aware that owning a hunting dog is a year-round commitment of care and training. Be sure you’re willing to invest significant time and energy before taking on the responsibility of a dog. Refreshments
      Be sure to carry at least two bottles of water in the field and have jugs of water at your vehicle. Water your dog and yourself, often. Bring snacks to keep your energy level up and consider canine energy bars for your dog. Finally, grassland habitat is the key to supporting pheasant populations, and much work remains to improve pheasant habitat in Minnesota. The grasslands that support pheasants have multiple important benefits for people, other wildlife, pollinators, water quality and local economies. To learn more about pheasant hunting, as well as about what the DNR and partner organizations are doing to improve pheasant habitat, visit the pheasant page. Discuss below - to view set the hook here.