Brad Dokken is a reporter and editor of the Herald's Sunday Northland Outdoors pages. Dokken joined the Herald company in November 1985 as a copy editor for Agweek magazine and joined the Herald staff in 1989. He worked as a copy editor in the features and news departments before becoming outdoors editor in 1998. He also writes a blog called Compass Points. A Roseau, Minn., native, Dokken is a graduate of Bemidji State University.
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J.J. Cantu (left) and Jaxson Marr of Grand Forks Air Force Base celebrate their first northern pike caught Saturday, Feb. 17 while ice fishing on Devils Lake. Click on the image to see the complete photo.
The Department of Natural Resources' request to increase the price of fishing and some hunting licenses dominated the game and fish agenda during last year's session of the Minnesota Legislature, but this year's session looks relatively quiet in terms of hunting and fishing bills, a key lawmaker on the outdoors front says. "I don't anticipate a whole lot," said Rep. Dan Fabian, R-Roseau, assistant House majority leader and chairman of the House Environment and Natural Resources Policy and Finance Committee. "There doesn't seem to be a whole lot of issues that are real pressing."
NDGF plans winter 2019 elk survey The North Dakota Game and Fish Department is planning an elk research project to begin next winter in western North Dakota in an effort to learn more about the distribution of elk in that part of the state. The project, which will get underway in 2019, is set for elk units E2 and E3 in the western and southwestern parts of North Dakota, said Jeb Williams, wildlife section chief for Game and Fish in Bismarck.
Walleye released 25-inch minimum • 26 inches—Dylan Osowski, 10, Thief River Falls, Lake of the Woods. Walleye kept 8-pound minimum • 9 pounds, 14 ounces—Nickolai Holm, Valley City, N.D., Lake Ashtabula. • 8 pounds—Lyle Lutman, Langdon, N.D., Lake Ashtabula. White bass kept 3-pound minimum • 3 pounds, 10 ounces—Mike Mattern, Devils Lake, Devils Lake.
To get an event in the Outdoors calendar, contact Brad Dokken at (701) 780-1148, (800) 477-6572 ext. 148 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org . Deadline is 5 p.m. Thursdays. Events Park vehicle passes are required for all events at North Dakota and Minnesota state parks. Vehicle passes are $7 daily and $35 annually in both states. • Feb. 19: Coon 'n Crockett Muzzleloaders, 6 p.m., Happy Joes Pizza, 2909 S. Washington St., Grand Forks.
I was talking to a fisheries manager the other day when I told him I thought this winter had become a bit of a grind. And in many ways, it has. There's been relentless periods of cold, too much wind and, for skiers, snowmobilers and other snow sports enthusiasts, marginal snowfall, at least in the Red River Valley. Except for a couple of trails in northeast North Dakota, there hasn't even been enough snow to groom snowmobile trails until you get farther east into Minnesota, where snowfall has been more abundant and ample wooded areas have kept it from blowing away.
The winter of 2017-18 hasn't been too severe for deer and most other wildlife to this point, but prolonged cold spells could cause problems in some areas if they persist too late into the season, managers say. "Some of these cold days are starting to take their toll a little bit, but it looks like we're working out of that now here for a short period of time," said Jeb Williams, wildlife chief for the North Dakota Game and Fish Department in Bismarck.
PEMBINA, N.D. -- At first glance, Jake Cosley says he wasn’t quite sure what he was seeing Wednesday afternoon, Feb. 7, while snowmobiling on the Red River south of Pembina. It looked like a dead deer, but something else seemed to be going on, too, he said. “I saw all this stuff going on around its head area and I’m like, ‘what kind of a buck was this?’” Cosley, 23, said.
Dylan Osowski, 10, Thief River Falls, caught and released this 26-inch walleye Saturday, Feb. 10, while fishing at Long Point on Lake of the Woods north of Williams, Minn. Osowski is in fourth grade grade at Challenger Elementary School in Thief River Falls. Dylan is the son of Scott and Jennifer Osowski, and grandson of Bob and Jacki Baird and Carl and Jane Osowski. “He is very excited about his big catch,” his mom, Jennifer, said in an email.
To get an event in the Outdoors calendar, contact Brad Dokken at (701) 780-1148, (800) 477-6572 ext. 148 or by email at email@example.com . Deadline is 5 p.m. Thursdays. Events Park vehicle passes are required for all events at North Dakota and Minnesota state parks. Vehicle passes are $7 daily and $35 annually in both states. • Feb. 17: Snowshoe Adventure, 1 to 3 p.m., Big Bog State Recreation Area near Waskish, Minn. Meet at the North Unit parking lot. Info: (218) 647-8592.