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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Lake of the Woods Ice fishing is winding down, and anyone venturing out should use extreme caution, regardless of what part of the lake they're fishing. Anglers targeting pike through the ice reportedly have done well with tip-ups. Pike fishing on Lake of the Woods is continuous. Much of the focus now has shifted to the Rainy River, which is open into Four-Mile Bay where the river enters Lake of the Woods. All of the main ramps along the river, including Wheeler's Point, now are open to boats of all sizes.
Chip Olson of Drayton, N.D., caught this 31-inch "greenback" walleye recently on Lake Winnipeg. The fish, which had a 19-inch girth, was released. Click on the image to see the full photo.
We're running low on nice fish photos, and certainly some of you anglers out there must have photos of a walleye, pike or fine finned specimen you'd like to show off. Ice fishing is winding down across the region, but there must be some big fish photos from previous excursions floating around out there somewhere. Or if you've made a trip to the Rainy River this spring and hooked into a big walleye or even bigger sturgeon and have a photo to share, we'd like to see it and share it with other readers.
Just like the infamous "I'll be back" line from the "Terminator" movies, the female peregrine by the same name is back in Grand Forks for another nesting season. Grand Forks birding authority and avid photographer Dave Lambeth got a confirmation on Terminator's band number Friday. The photos weren't clear enough to run in print, Lambeth said, but they clearly show the "T over 2" band number that confirms her identity.
If you're out and about and see a bald eagle nest in North Dakota, the state Game and Fish Department would like to hear about it. Sandra Johnson, conservation biologist for Game and Fish in Bismarck, said the department is looking for locations of nests with eagles present, not individual eagle sightings. Eagles are actively incubating eggs in March and April, and it's easy to distinguish an eagle nest because of its enormous size. Johnson estimates the state has about 215 active bald eagle nests, possibly more.
These four boys had a big weekend tip-up fishing for northern pike with their dads March 18-19 on Devils Lake. Pictured are Caleb Keizer, 5 (from left), Detroit Lakes, Minn.; Braden Durick, 7, Grand Forks; Rivers Rylander, 7, Bemidji; and Cove Rylander, 5, Bemidji. Keeping the show on track were dads Loren Keizer, Jason Rylander and Brad Durick. (Photo/ Jason Rylander)
ROOSEVELT, Minn.—A much-anticipated boat ramp on the south shore of Lake of the Woods near Rocky Point north of Roosevelt remains on hold despite plans that have been in the works since 1999, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources says. According to Kent Skaar, Acquisition and Development Section leader for the DNR in St. Paul, lack of funding and delays in required state and federal Environmental Assessments are the main stumbling blocks to moving forward with the project.
To get an event in the 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 • April 1-2: Minnesota State Archery Association State Indoor Tournament, Gillett Recreation Center on the campus of Bemidji State University, 1801 17th St. NE, Bemidji. Two lines at 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. April 1 and 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. April 2. Info: email@example.com or Ed Turner, (218) 766-6492.
It's funny how people drift in and out of our lives sometimes. That's also true with hunting and fishing partners. I can think of a half-dozen people with whom I shared numerous trips afield, only to gradually lose contact. Some of them live within walking distance. That is nobody's fault, and it didn't happen because of disputes or disagreements; it just happened. For whatever reason, it works that way sometimes.
Scott Forbes is a professor of biology at the University of Winnipeg who has been following changes in Lake Winnipeg's walleye population, the "greenbacks" that attract ice fishing enthusiasts north by the thousands every winter.