Grand Rapids will host the 2004 Minnesota Governor's Deer Hunting Opener on Nov. 4-6. Early morning breakfasts, deer camp camaraderie and participation in age-old traditions will highlight the three-day event. Explore Minnesota Tourism and the DNR in coordination with the Minnesota Deer Hunter Association and local community representatives will conduct the event.
Attendees can participate in a banquet Thursday, activities on Friday and a hunt on Saturday. Phone (651) 297-3488 for more information.
DNR to host meetings on special fishing regulations proposals
The DNR will host public input meetings on special regulations proposals for walleye, bass, northern pike, crappie, sunfish and trout on 54 lakes and one river in Minnesota, including Gilbert (crappie), Goodrich (crappie), Hubert (bass), Pelican (walleye) and Rogers (crappie) in Crow Wing County, and Sylvan Lake in Cass County.
Elsewhere, new regulations are proposed for walleye and sauger at Lake of the Woods and the Rainy River. For more information on local meetings, contact DNR fisheries in Brainerd at 828-2552.
Open houses are scheduled for:
-- Sept. 2, 6-8 p.m., Brainerd DNR office; for the above-mentioned lakes in Crow Wing and Cass counties;
-- Sept. 7, 7-9 p.m., Backus firehall, Backus, for Horseshoe Lake in Cass County (bass, crappie, sunfish, northern pike, walleye).
PWT announces 2005 schedule
The In-Fisherman Professional Walleye Trail has announced its 2005 schedule, which includes first time stops in Illinois and Kentucky.
West Division tournaments include the Fox Chain of Lakes in Illinois (April 20-22), Bull Shoals Lake in Arkansas (May 11-13), and Lake Oahe in South Dakota (July 27-29).
East Division tournaments include Lake Cumberland in Kentucky (June 1-3), Saginaw Bay in Michigan (June 20-July 1) and the St. Mary's River in Michigan (Aug 24-26).
The location and dates of the PWT Championship will be announced at a later date.
Waterfowl migration map available at ducks.org
Ducks Unlimited and Waterfowler.com have joined forces to provide mapping of the waterfowl migration this fall.
Real-time mapping of the migration had not been accomplished prior to the creation of Waterfowler.com's interactive GIS Migration Mapping System in 2002. The system uses more than 100,000 active participants providing zip code based field reports. This fall hunters can view the map and contribute information online through DU's Web site or Waterfowler.com.
"WFC's Migration Map is a magical experience for any passionate waterfowl hunter," said Darin Sakas, Waterfowler.com publisher. "It allows users to stay in touch with what's going on in the field, even when they're trapped behind their desk at work."
The map relies on input from the hunting community, whose members are qualified to provide accurate, day-to-day field observations. The map is a GIS program that plots the intensity of waterfowl migration and displays it in a color-coded format. The information submitted by users is averaged and updated every 15 minutes and reset to zero every 24 hours. Migration intensity is measured by hunters' estimates of flight activity in their areas. The information is subjective, but data averaging should minimize discrepancies.
A how-to guide is available at Waterfowler.com. Map participation is open to all readers, registered guests and members of Waterfowler.com. Registration and membership are not required to submit or view map data.
Wildfire season has been mild so far, but flames could still hit West
Usually by now, wildfires are burning up the West as harried firefighters scramble from one blaze to the next in a desperate quest to put out the flames.
Not so this year. It's well into fire season and it's been mild.
So where are the fires?
Alaska has had an extreme season, with more than 4.4 million acres burned. But despite early, intense fires in California, just more than 1.1 million acres have been scorched in the Lower 48 states. The 10-year average for all states is 2.78 million acres.
"It's slow. It's sloooow," said Rose Davis, spokeswoman for the National Interagency Fire Center in Boise, Idaho.
The experts aren't fooled.
Mild temperatures and rain have helped keep flames at bay this year, but forecasters caution the worst could still lie ahead. Last year, the California wildfires didn't hit until October, and turned out to be the most disastrous in state history. Two dozen people were killed and more than 3,500 homes were destroyed.
While the West has been warm, periodic shots of cooler weather combined with rain and few dry lightning outbreaks have contributed to a slower than normal fire season.
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