Staff Directory 10644341

Dennis Anderson

Columnist | Outdoors
Phone: 612-673-4424
Location: Minneapolis
Other languages: None

Outdoors columnist and editor Dennis Anderson joined the Star Tribune in 1993 after serving in the same positions at the St. Paul Pioneer Press for 13 years. His column topics vary widely, and include canoeing, fishing, hunting, adventure travel and conservation of the environment.


Anderson was born in North Dakota, but grew up in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. He has an undergraduate degree in English from the University of Minnesota, Morris and a master's in journalism from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities, where his focus was communications law. He and his wife, Jan, along with their Labrador retrievers, live on a small farm in the St. Croix River Valley. As time allows, Anderson competes on cutting horses.
Recent content from Dennis Anderson
Randy Schmiesing has converted much of his farmland land to wildlife cover. But he, along with other Minnesota farmers, still experiences water proble

Anderson: In lieu of runoff system, farmer's excess water part of habitat

Randy Schmiesing, 60, like most every farmer past or present in west-central Minnesota, has a complicated relationship with water. This is especially true in Eldorado Township, where Schmiesing lives, because land there is nearly table-top flat.
Tim Anderson, with his Gordon setter, Sam Elliott.

Anderson: Nothing breaks this Minnesotan's fever for the outdoors life

Saddled with a broken arm, Tim Anderson's story is instructional, perhaps even inspirational.
Bemidji-area fishing guide Matt Breuer posed with one of his favorite wintertime catches: a monster burbot.

Anderson: Catching a burbot a thing of beauty for one guide

A Bemidji-area fishing guide, Matt Breuer has enjoyed a lifelong love affair with a fish many Minnesotans find too ugly and serpentine to even like.
Trevor Anderson, peering through binoculars, joined his dad, Dennis, to hike into the vast badlands region of eastern Montana seeking mule deer.

Anderson: Hunt in eastern Montana's badlands offers hard times, good times

Packing out 200 pounds of mule deer? Only one way to handle it: 'We should enjoy it'
Then-gubernatorial candidate Tim Walz talked with owner Randy Voss as he shot on the sporting clay course Tuesday, Sept. 25, 2018 at the Caribou Gun C

Anderson: Dearth of outdoors reps on Walz's transition team is worrisome

There remains concerns among some sporting types that they are being taken for granted.

Deer harvest in Minnesota down from 2017, especially in northeast

The state's opening day kill was down 11 percent, and the harvest on Sunday of the season's first weekend was off 7 percent.
Kent Harris, left, and Tony Berg, boith of the Twin Cities area, were among hunters who felled mature bucks when the Wisconsin deer season opened Satu

Anderson: Some luckier than others on Wisconsin's opening day

Unlike years past on opening day of Wisconsin's firearm season, no bucks entered into the scope this time on Saturday morning. But not all were shut out.
In this 2016 photo, Bill Illetschko, a bow hunter, was practicing at the city-run archery range in South St. Paul

Anderson: Calm, not restlessness, an asset in bow hunter's pursuit of deer

An archery deer hunt provides plenty of time and reason to think.
Bob White’s One Last Look — Musky

Anderson: Sporting art is a vocation and a lifestyle for Bob White

Affinity for sporting art came quick for Bob White.
The world record Jordan Buck.

Dennis Anderson: A wild, weird deer tale figures in Minnesota's opener

Highlights include a world record whitetail buck, an unusual caliber Winchester, a dance hall and — why not? — a tavern.
John Rabe, left, Bud Rabe, Loren Rabe and Greg Kroschel are part of a multiple-generation deer camp in Kanabec County whose family roots date to the l

Anderson: Kanabec County deer camp remains a draw five generations later

A Kanabec County deer camp remains a draw for descendants into its second century
Ethan Zdon, 15, of Isanti, shot this 8-point buck the second weekend of the firearms season last year. This is an example of a photo that appeared on

Photos wanted for Wednesday Outdoors page

Readers also should include with submitted photos a few descriptive sentences, including names of people shown and other pertinent information such as the time, day and general location where hunts were conducted.
Minnesota gubernatorial candidate Hennepin County Commissioner Jeff Johnson, Republican, left, shakes hands with Congressman Tim Walz, DFL, after they

Anderson: Walz, Johnson state their case on the outdoors

Candidates for Minnesota governor Tim Walz and Jeff Johnson offer their opinions on outdoor issues ranging from guns to roadside mowing to mining in northern Minnesota.
Charlie Hays, with Marty, the top field-trail yellow Labrador retriever ever.

Anderson: Retrieving dogs had their champion in trainer Charlie Hays

Accolades only tell part of the trainer's rich story.
Rancher Clay Peterson, center, of Wisdom, Mont., enlists the help of several Minnesotans to find hundreds of cattle among 13,000 Montana mountain acre

Anderson: Minnesota horsemen answer call for cattle roundup in Montana

On a recent day in the Big Hole Valley, seven Minnesotans were part of a fall roundup, during which cattle are gathered and driven to lower country, where they over-winter.
Honeybee populations are in severe decline, owing to pesticides and reduced foraging habitat -- among other things.

Anderson: Reports of species die-offs are scary, but public's indifference is scarier

Declines continue, with habitat loss a big influencer.
Arlyn Gehrke, left, and Rodney Lowe opened the 2018 Minnesota pheasant opener on Lowe's land west of Luverne.

Anderson: On state pheasant opener, hike is good but birds are elusive

A lot of crops, a lot of water, but the pheasants won on this day.
The twitchy energy, the October sun, the lunches by tailgate: All are a part of the pheasant opener memory bank.

Anderson: Another pheasant opener, another chance to make memories

Wing-shooters of a certain age know their rewards.

Majority of corn, soybean fields still standing for pheasant opener

The vast, standing crops often prove nearly impenetrable by hunters and their dogs, thus providing safe havens for rooster pheasants, which many wing shooters consider the most beautiful of game birds.
DNR conservation officer Lt. Gary Nordseth checked Gov. Dayton’s license before the governor went afield on the first day of the 2017 ringneck seaso

Anderson: Gov. Dayton deserves a pheasant for conservation leadership

As our governor opens the pheasant season next weekend, a look at his conservation-minded leadership
Grant Merritt, 1970s

Anderson: Former state environmental champion has message for the moment

A state watchdog in the 1970s, Merritt said with regard to current mining push: Proceed with caution.
Ruffed grouse numbers are up, according to one preliminary report.

Ruffed grouse numbers appear to be up this fall

Historically, fall grouse-harvest numbers have tracked population estimates forecast by spring drumming counts. But last year's lopsided disparity between the two indicators worried DNR officials.
Arnold Krueger and his pal, Jet, looked over a pond on his property about 6 miles from Le Center on Saturday monring, opening day of the Minnesota duc

Anderson: Veteran hunter, 90, continues tradition during Minnesota's duck opener

The DNR had issued an upbeat prediction for Saturday's opener, reporting that duck nesting conditions were good this spring. That was welcome news for Arnold Krueger.
Patrice Aubrecht of Shorewood was experiencing Whitewater State Park for the first time.

Anderson: Rebuilt and still updating, Whitewater State Park is having its moment

Dennis Anderson: Changes made because of 2007 flood – and in spite of it – have made visiting the park a must.
Former Vikings player Keith Nord has been happiest in his post-athletic career when following dogs through Minnesota’s grouse woods or North Dakota�

Anderson: Ex-Viking Nord deals with cancer but stays happy afield

Keith Nord, athlete and motivational speaker, has the usual big plans for the fall. Except …
Friends, including Brad Johnson, far right, on the first day of their hike Sunday in the Beartooth Mountains. From left, Todd Green, Tom Therrien and

Friends' quick thinking saved Minnesota buddy mauled by grizzlies

As Tom Therrien and Todd Green half-ran through the rugged Beartooth Mountains that divide Wyoming and Montana, they prayed for help.
Anderson: High-tech gear is winning the argument in the wild

Anderson: High-tech gear is winning the argument in the wild

Communication devices more and more make sense.
Mitch Lunda toted a pair of Canada geese back to his blind while hunting in the east metro Saturday, opening day of the early goose season. Success ca

Anderson: Early Canada goose season signals change in season, for the better

Summer gives way to fall, in the field if not on the calendar, and for many it's a welcome transition
Anglers on Upper Red Lake were expected to draw down numbers of walleyes 17 inches and under, but warm waters cooled the bite.

Some of Minnesota's best walleye lakes: How was their season?

Looking back at the season on Leech, Cass, Upper Red and Lake of the Woods — and ahead to likely changes.
Canoeist Pete Arnesen of the Twin Cities capured this shot of Canadian forest fires from a distance, but they got close enough to him to prompt him to

Anderson: Canoeist gets more than he bargained for on fire-shortened wilderness trip

Flames put a scare into Pete Arnesen, who continued a solo canoe trip despite 'imminent' danger

Anderson: State Fair's horse show feeling its oats again

After recent struggles, the old barn is buzzing.
Fairgoers walked though the DNR's building featuring scenes from Minnesota landscapes.

Anderson: DNR building is a must stop at State Fair

The 84-year-old DNR building, with its outdoor fish pond and indoor fish tanks, will as always show off about 40 finned species to fairgoers.
Iowan Art Fleener sized up an original Rigby muzzleloader used in the first-ever 1,000-yard international shooting match.

Anderson: Muzzleloader marksmen are fascinated by their weaponry

Part competitor, part historian, shooters delight in the tools of the trade.
David Logan of Scotland afield with one of his Labrador retrievers. He will be at Game Fair.

Anderson: Once also-rans, a handler and his Labrador become royalty

Queen Elizabeth II, who knows the world of field trials, was impressed.
All five leading candidates for governor - Republicans Tim Pawlenty and Jeff Johnson, and DFLers Tim Walz, Lori Swanson and Erin Murphy - shared a sta

Anderson: Gubernatorial candidates should be forced to bone up on conservation

Farmers want gubernatorial hopefuls to listen and address conservation topics.
Frank Addington Jr. has been trick-shooting for more than 30 years.

Anderson: Texas trick-shooting archer locks in on his target ­­— and his message

Frank Addington Jr. is in town for performances at Game Fair in Ramsey.

Lauded Minn Kota Ultrex trolling motor can retrace routes

The new Minn Kota Ultrex electric trolling motor won best of show in the boating category at the recent International Convention of Allied Sportfishing Trades show.
Fishing at sunset on Lake of the Woods can be a magical time.

Anderson: DNR seeking public's input on various fishing regulations

The Department of Natural Resources has scheduled public meetings to discuss existing and proposed special fishing regulations for 15 lakes and one trout stream.
Some 4 million people visit Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming each year. Though dwarfed by other national parks, it still offers breathless beauty

Anderson: Grand Teton National Park's Snake River is a charmer

At Grand Teton National Park, landmark river yields trout, and memories
A longtime guide and onetime bait and tackle shop owner, Marv Koep is among a handful of fishing experts who ply the many lakes in the Brainerd lakes

Anderson: Veteran guide Koep leads groups to unhyped success, trip after trip

Fishing guide Marv Koep lowers expectations, then lets success elevate spirits on the water.
Truck-camper

Anderson: Such as it is, my RV still satisfies my hunger for the road

I took the RV leap years ago. There is no turning back.
Mike Giefer, left, of Woodbury, prepares to net a walleye on Mille Lacs for Robbie Robinson. Robinson runs a launch and other guide boats out of Fishe

Anderson: Finding, but not keeping, walleyes on Mille Lacs

Walleye fishing on Mille Lacs is still good, and pleasurable, despite the ban.
Meadow Kouffeld will put her outdoors skills to another challenge among finalists of "Extreme Huntress."

Anderson: Minnesotan's love of the outdoors is put to the extremes

Grand Rapids' Meadow Kouffeld, a biologist and educator, is pursuing a title: 'huntress.'
The BWCA

Anderson: Our BWCA canoe trip packing list, checked twice by readers

The final list: What not to forget on a canoe trek into the boundary waters.
Minnesota has been home to pheasants for about 100 years. But the birds have struggled recently because of a loss of grasslands.

Anderson: Wet spring delaying hatching of Minnesota pheasants

One reason might be the 5.8 inches of rain the Worthington area received Wednesday. But blame also is due at least in part to the late spring, said Nicole Davros, a DNR wildlife researcher.
Dude, a gelding, now grazes on a farm far from Texas.

Anderson: Miles aren't as long for a new cutting horse

Texas-bound with a fire that never quite dims.
The BWCA is a popular spot to visit and can be a successful jaunt if you know what to bring.

Anderson: What to pack if you're headed to the Boundary Waters

To fish the boundary waters effectively, you needn't bring along a big tackle box. But here's what you should pack before you leave.
About 1,000 Minnesota prep trapshooters gathered in Alexandria, Minn., on Thursday, one day of nine days of competition during which more than 1 milli

Anderson: Prep trap shooting is going over with a bang - but needs help

The Minnesota high school trap shooting championship this year will attract more than 8,000 students over nine days, but youth participation in bird hunting, deer hunting and fishing has been declining rapidly.

New book lauds unique grandeur of St. Croix and Namekagon rivers

St. Croix and Namekagon rivers get stirring treatment in a book that coincides with the anniversary of legislation in 1968 that protects them.
Arnold Krueger, left, and Larry Thomforde teamed up to send a hen wood duck scurrying from her nesting box into a waiting net. The wood duck was then

Anderson: A study in what ducks call home

Enthusiasts dig deeper into nesting preferences in home-based waterfowl village

Anderson: DNR boat check report speaks volumes about violations

DNR officers say rules are considered afterthoughts.

Anderson: Need fishing help for kids? DNR has what you need

The DNR has amassed how-to fishing guides, as well as a list of Twin Cities waters with shore- and pier-fishing opportunities, and where bluegills, crappies, bass and other fish can be caught.
This photo has been said to depict J.V. Schanken, then of Chicago, with the record Minnesota northern pike, weighing 45 pounds, 12 ounces.

Anderson: Granddaughter challenges legitimacy of record-setting northern

Is John V. Schanken's northern pike, caught in 1929, a record or just a good fish tale? His granddaughter has doubts.

Anderson: Is all that hot gear a barrier to real experience in the BWCA?

You need to be prepared, but there is a danger in missing real experience.

Anderson: Net in Lake Mille Lacs with dead walleye investigated

Beyond acknowledging the net was found, Minnesota DNR regional fisheries manager Brad Parsons also declined to elaborate.
The record bull moose now rests at the International Wolf Center.

International Wolf Center goes extra mile to get Alaska moose for exhibit

Dennis Anderson column: Alaska moose took circuitous route to land in Wolves of the World exhibit in Ely.

Anderson: Republicans taking outdoors fund in wrong direction

With the choices they made about the state's lottery-funded environmental fund, Republicans made a banana-republic-like laughingstock of the appropriation process.
Dick “Griz’’ Grzywinski pilots his boat near Red Wing in spring, then, later, on the St. Croix,. following walleyes and sauger. Here he neared t

Anderson: Guide chases river fish as new regulations are pondered

As Minnesota and Wisconsin consider major changes to fishing regulations on the Mississippi, the St. Croix is on track to keep on the same path.
At a time when mom-and-pop resorts are folding, Paradise Resort on a lake near Bemidji is thriving.

Anderson: Sweat, savvy have helped owners of small resort stay relevant

Mom-and-pop places are struggling. Paradise Resort was determined to upgrade.
Vic Krause of International Falls ventured south for the opener to Upper Red Lake, where he and his fishing partner, Rod Drill, also of the Falls, enj

Anderson: DNR wants to reduce spawners in Upper Red Lake

Ideally, DNR area fisheries supervisor Gary Barnard said, Upper Red Lake would hold between 2.5 and 4.5 female walleyes per acre, or "spawners." Currently the lake is at about six.
Reaching their limits: Twin Cities anglers on Upper Red Lake during Saturday’s opener found plenty of fish biting. From left, Pete Mogren, John Hero

Anderson: Fish greet the opener masses on Upper Red Lake

Many gathered, and many came away happy on Minnesota's fishing opener back to shore with their limit.
A youth from Franklin, Minn., perched on a deadfall while fishing for catfish at his secret fishing hole on the Minnesota River in 2006.

Anderson: Getting youth interested in the outdoors starts with parents

Kids need a push to love the outdoors. Parents can help. Start Saturday.
Brothers Robert, left, Roger, Ron and Richard Schara at their annual fishing opener.

Anderson: Schara's family comes together for fishing openers

Signing off, with Raven, from ''Minnesota Bound,'' Ron Schara to join siblings at annual opener reunion.
DNR fisheries biologists and other staff trap walleyes to produce eggs that eventually will be stocked as fry or fingerlings, keeping Minnesota lakes

Anderson: Bring on the walleye. Here's how to catch 'em

The late spring is expected to extend highly productive walleye fishing further into June than is typically the case, including a big Memorial Day weekend.
Muskies, like this 51-inch monster in Pelican Lake, aren't welcome in parts of Otter Tail County.

Anderson: Pay close attention to muskie slugfest in Otter Tail County

Quarrel over claims of muskies' destructive ways could have repercussions for state fish management.
Julie Blackburn, a member of the Lessard-Sams Outdoor Heritage Council, addressed attendees of the Public Lands Rally in the Capitol rotunda on Wednes

Anderson: Rally urged Legislature to care about public lands

The Rally for Public Lands beneath the Capitol rotunda linked the present to the past: Most who attended wore the blaze orange caps
Archer Mark Puariea of Stillwater arrowed a big tom the first time he ever hunted turkeys, using a slate call he bought the night before.

Anderson: Nocking an arrow — if only turkey hunting was that easy

Last year, Minnesota turkey hunters who went afield armed with bows had about a 15 percent chance of success. Those odds were about half those of hunters who toted shotguns.
Passage of the Wetland Conservation Act preceded the establishment of the Wetlands Bank, which encourages landowners committed to conservation to rest

Anderson: Banking big on wetlands

Just as large as the need for runoff areas are financial incentives for worthy projects
Anderson: Snow has created challenges for some of Minnesota's wildlife

Anderson: Snow has created challenges for some of Minnesota's wildlife

Finding food, nesting among the concerns for pheasants, deer, woodcock.
When do mallards pick up and leave Minnesota in the fall? And when they do leave, do they hopscotch their way down the state, or fly long distances to

Anderson: Study of ducks' seasonal migrations to resume this summer

Researchers to keep studying mallards' annual migrations, which aren't always driven by weather
A young moose took advantage of the lack of traffic on the Gunflint Trail at daybreak.

Anderson: Reference to northeast moose management is dubious in Minnesota's deer plan

Hanging in the balance is the integrity of the draft deer plan.
Two whitetail deer and a crow along the Minnesota River in March 2016.

DNR plan calls for smaller deer harvest than what hunters' group seeks

Over the past 16 months, the DNR has met with a 19-member stakeholder group to develop the state's first-ever deer management plan following complaints about poor oversight by the agency.
Farmland drainage is among the greatest challenges for Scott Glup, project leader of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Litchfield Wetland Management

Anderson: Federal project leader sees work as 'the front lines of protection' for wetlands, waterfowl

Set of Waterfowl Production Areas provides useful feedback.
Channels and shoreline were the choices for anglers on White Iron Lake near Ely on the fishing opener in 1996.

Anderson: Cold truth about the coming fish opener? Have augers ready

We've seen this kind of spring, and it could mean iced lakes Up North.
AT ISSUE: Modest stream buffers won’t counteract the effects of extreme subsurface drainage tiling, which is common in southern and western Minnesot

Anderson: My stance on farm tiling issue generated strong response

Column decrying effects of farm practice yielded strong, diverse response.
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