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As far as I've seen the grouse are pretty few and far between this year. I only heard a couple drummings this spring and haven't seen a single bird in the Blackduck area yet this year.


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Don't bother heading north to the Waskish area!! I put on over 700 miles in the woods last week up there and saw a total of 1 young bird. There were a few woodcock around, but virtually no grouse. It's gonna be tough this year if last week is any indication of bird numbers!!

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The population of grouse has declined quite a bit each year for the last 2 or 3. The numbers should start going up here in the next 2 or 3 years. I have seen 3 grouse this year. I hunt in the blackduck area for grouse a lot in the fall. But if your going to hunt opener.... good luck. Grouse don't want to fly when the have good leave cover on the ground. Many people just drive right by them and never see one. There are too many predators around for the grouse to get over populated. But when the predators decline, the grouse incline. Therefore making the food chain.
Good luck hunting.
And also good luck to the bear hunters, fisherman and bow opener this weekend too. I'll be there!

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Thanks guys...the forestry service guy I talked to said that it was slower this year and was about to head on the upswing part of the cycle. Said they have maps for the different trails through the Chippewa Forest, so guess we'll just have to get a couple of maps and let them go scope things out. They aren't going to come up for opener, after that...so if anyone has any leads we'd love to hear about it. THANKS AGAIN!

------------------
Drake Motel
drakemotel.com
(888)253-8501
[email protected]

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Drake- I saw my first grouse today on the way to Ponemah. It flew in front of the car. Have to wait till Tiffany has the baby before I hit the woods.

Happy Hunting
Woodman

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Hey Woodman~I finally saw one the night before last traveling down 39. I'll have to stop in at the Forestry Service and see what grouse trail maps they have for the area I saw it in so I can pass it on to the boys next weekend. Trying to get them at least a starting point.

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Drake Motel
drakemotel.com
(888)253-8501
[email protected]

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Hey everyone, I saw a lot of deer this weekend. Friday night i saw 15 deer in my bear hunting stand and also saw 4 grouse right next to me eating clover. But....... no bear.
I went to blackduck lake this weekend too and did okay. I caught 5 walleyes in the shallows. I was using crankbaits in about 4-10 feet of water and had good results.
good luck.

------------------
Kupcho's Guide Service
Upper Red, Winnie, Blackduck Area
http://fishingminnesota.com/blackduck/
Phone:(651) 426-1545
E-mail: [email protected]

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Just wanted to say the son went home happy~he went out for a bit on Friday and actually heard a couple grouse and saw one, then Saturday he managed to get one (he thought he was going to just check out the trails)! He's looking forward to coming back and trying it again in three weeks. Other son is coming up this weekend to check out other trails and see if he finds any.

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Drake Motel
drakemotel.com
(888)253-8501
[email protected]

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  • 2 weeks later...

Northern Minnesota Squaw Lake Area

Grouse and woodcock hunting report. Four days 9/21/02 to 9/24/02 I was up camping and hunting. Got rained on three days and hailed on once.
Big black clouds and bright blue sky where it would shower for 5 minutes then the sun would come out. In the woods for 12.5 hours had 22 flushes ( 4 woodcock and 18 grouse) 9 shots with 3 grouse and 1 woodcock bagged. Also fished Sunday AM and caught one northern.
Notes: Grouse are down and as a result I didn’t see one other hunter in the woods. The cover was extremely green and thick making it impossible to see flushed birds some as close as 10 to 12 yards. More leaves should be down after October 1 and make for better hunting.
Dogs got super pumped on the birds scent as only dogs can do and I knowing the area where the birds were likely to be but I still had to be super ready to shoot into the woods when birds flushed. The only bird I seen hit was the woodcock. All the rest of the time the dogs would get busy in the area of the fall and just bring back the grouse. That was the only way to know you hit one.
I should have trimmed the long hair on dogs so I wouldn’t have had to spend so much time with the steel comb and sharp pocketknife removing seed bur tangles.
No bugs and no people, the woods and river were beautiful, the sunsets over the river and duck swamp lake were awesome, there were a few birds and the fish bit, the breeze was cool and had so much oxygen it was easy to breathy, the dogs were great company and worked well, I was tired every night and slept well. All in all it was the best place to be in the fall and I had a wonderful time.
PS: Heading back up 10/12/02 thru 10/15/02. Wish me luck.

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TOM~Welcome to the forum! Thanks for the great report! Sounds like you had a fantastic time, even though the weather was a bit wet! Fun time combing out the dogs huh!

Son #2 was up last weekend and they brought back one, but saw a few more. Both boys are coming back up next weekend so we'll go out again then. Like you said, it should go better with the coverage changing. But it is a beautiful walk out there now.

Good luck to you when your up next weekend~if your in Blackduck pop in and say hi, always love meeting other forum folks and comparing hunting and fishing stories!

------------------
Drake Motel
drakemotel.com
(888)253-8501
[email protected]

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  • 2 weeks later...

Took two and a half days 10/12/02 thru 10/14/02 too scout deer area
and put up 4 homemade portable deer stands. Lots of freshly fallen
leaves made it difficult to read sign. Fished from "THE BRIDGE" in
wind, rain, and cold from 3 PM to dark to catch two northern for
supper. Hunted grouse yesterday 10/15/02 from 9:30 AM to 12:30 PM had
four flushes, shot at three and got two. Dogs (two Springer) were
really pumped from being in the camper three days when they knew we
were in a hunting area. Seeing grouse was allot easier as most of the
leaves are down. Lots of Ruff Grouse society members from Grand Rapid
meeting were in the area but I didn't hear allot of shooting. Just
have to know where the birds are located.

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Grouse hunting around here last weekend was so so. Just a couple a day per hunters, but at least no group was totally skunked. The ducks have definitely arrived! Our boys were ready to get their duck stamp after seeing so many.

------------------
Drake Motel
drakemotel.com
(888)253-8501
[email protected]

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Hey everyone. I filled my management tag this weekend by shooting a doe. I ate fresh tenderloins last night.
This weekend I spent most of my time building deer stands and playing out in the woods. I didn't get out fishing, how did everyone do? Or was everyone out hunting? I only saw 3 grouse this weekend, and every grouse I saw I didn't have a gun with me because we were building stands. Oh well.
Last week, when it was a little warmer out a lot more people were seeing grouse.
Good luck.

Kupcho

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Hey Jason~Glad to hear you got one. Can't believe it's less than three weeks until firearms opener....hopefully you'll get a 30 pointer!

Even though we had a couple inches of snow on Friday that didn't stop folks from heading to the local lakes. Saw some nice bass and northerns come through the fish cleaning room, the biggest bass was a 3.3 pounder. Still don't have the boat stored yet in case we get back to normal temps around here.

Average temps this time of year is normally 50 high and 31 low, we're at 35 & 17 today....that's alright, maybe we'll get the ice started and be on the ice earlier this year!

------------------
Drake Motel
drakemotel.com
(888)253-8501
[email protected]

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Hey drake, yes hunting season is coming right up. I do hope to get a 30 pointer. Then I would come to the Drake motel and play the song for you. LOL!!
This weekend I will be duck hunting around the st. cloud area.
Good luck if your going out.
Talk to you later

------------------
Kupcho's Guide Service
Upper Red, Winnie, Blackduck Area
http://fishingminnesota.com/blackduck/
Phone:(651) 426-1545
E-mail: [email protected]

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I'll be waiting to hear that song grin.gif

Just had some folks check in who gave a pretty good grouse report, seeing quite a few and said they are bunching up...fishing, hunting..decisions, decisions!

------------------
Drake Motel
drakemotel.com
(888)253-8501
[email protected]

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Getting good reports this week from folks who are grouse hunting. Talked to another group today who had several flushes and they said what we had heard earlier in the week.. grouse are bunched up together in groups of six or so, so folks are heading home happy! Anyone else out there been hunting in this area and finding the same? Personally wasn't able to get out there this week.

------------------
Drake Motel
drakemotel.com
(888)253-8501
[email protected]

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