Brad Dokken is editor of the Herald's Northland Outdoors section and also works as a copy editor and page designer. 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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A law scheduled to take effect July 1 in Minnesota has created a stir in fishing circles, and a new Facebook page seeking the law's repeal already had 2,800 "likes" as of Friday afternoon. As explained in an item at the top of this page (or elsewhere on the website if you're reading online), Minnesota State Statute 86B.13 would require anyone trailering a boat or other water-related equipment in Minnesota to complete an online training course on Aquatic Invasive Species.
SOMEWHERE ON DEVILS LAKE -- Getting to this fishing spot, a shoreline with a proven history of producing walleyes through the ice late in the day, had taken some doing for Mark Bry and the SnoBear tracked vehicle he was driving. Down a ditch. Through a slough.
Resorts along the south shore are beginning to move their fish houses farther north to deeper water, and anglers are finding enough action on walleyes, saugers and perch to accommodate fish fries. Best fishing has been in the mornings and evenings in 34 feet of water over mud bottom areas or 21 to 28 feet from Lighthouse Gap toward Morris Point. Moving west toward Zippel Bay, Long Point and Arnesen's, best fishing is in 26 to 28 feet of water.
Bob Tupa of Grand Forks shot this elk in December near Killdeer, N.D.
Here is the weekly report from Department of Natural Resources conservation officers in northwest Minnesota for Dec. 29: District 1 - Baudette area CO Ben Huener (Roseau) checked anglers on...
DNR, partners working on pheasant plan The Department of Natural Resources says it will develop a four-year plan to increase and enhance grassland habitat on public and private lands based...
The North Dakota Wildlife Federation will host the fifth Future of Hunting in North Dakota workshop from 1 to 5 p.m. Jan. 17 at the Ramada Inn in Bismarck. The meeting is open to the public and to all sportsmen and wildlife groups. The workshop will be held as part of the federation's annual three-day conference.
Q. I've read about lake trout fishing in several publications and regularly see segments where they're catching the fish through the ice on outdoors TV shows. It looks like a blast. Where can I go within reasonable driving distance to catch these fish through the ice? A. You're absolutely right about lake trout fishing being a blast. Fish that thrive in deep, cold waters, lake trout often are at their most active in winter when water temperatures are consistently cold through all depth ranges. Expect to drive a few hours to get into lake trout country, though.
At this point, at least, snow prospects aren't looking very favorable across most of the region, but the Department of Natural Resources is offering a New Year's Day Activity, known as the "First Day Hike," on Thursday at seven Minnesota state parks. It's part of a national event including all 50 states, so snow isn't a prerequisite. Good thing, too, by the looks of it. "Naturalist-led First Day Hikes are a fun and inspired way to begin the new year with friends and family," said Erika Rivers, director of Minnesota state parks and trails.
This week's Northland Outdoors section offers a wrap-up of some of the biggest events and issues that defined the outdoors in 2014. I like to consider myself a "glass-half-full" kind of guy, but it's hard to be optimistic about some of the trends taking place on the outdoors landscape entering 2015.