Staff Directory 10644341

Dennis Anderson

Columnist | Outdoors
phone: 612-673-4424
Anderson has been the Star Tribune outdoors columnist since 1993. Before that, for 13 years, he wrote the outdoors column for the St. Paul Pioneer Press. He covers hunting, fishing, camping, boating, paddling and other outdoor activities, as well as natural resource conservation.
Recent content from Dennis Anderson
Drop boxes like this have become a fixture during recent deer hunts in parts of Minnesota.

State report: Lax oversight of deer and elk farmers needs fixing

The report recommended that the Board of Animal Health should more closely oversee deer and elk farmers, as well as strengthen consequences for those who don't comply with state rules,
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.
Afton State Park, Mn.,Weds., July 30, 2003--Black-eyed Susans grow throughout the prairie restoration at Afton State Park. Prairie restoration is perm

Anderson: 10 years on, state's habitat grants program quietly makes progress.

Habitat program came in with 2008 amendment.
Modest stream buffers won’t counteract the effects of extreme subsurface drainage tiling, which is commonplace in southern and western Minnesota.

Anderson: Unregulated farm tiling puts state's waters at risk

Minnesota might win a Super Bowl next year or the next. Other good things surely will occur as well. But unless this problem is fixed, the state's natural resources are doomed.
Anderson: Adventure trips are seductive, but they need a planned approach

Anderson: Adventure trips are seductive, but they need a planned approach

Adventure trips are seductive; think about these tips, from timing to the challenges of crossing the border.
Jim Smith, left, Dave Swager and Vince Anderson, right, boiled maple sap as as their animal spring syrup-making ritual began in earnest last week.

Anderson: Making sweet work of turning sap to syrup

Five families form a crew that sets a singular goal this time of year: to turn sap into maple syrup
Pat and Nicole Reeve, who live near Plainview in southeast Minnesota, host the outdoors television show, “Driven with Pat & Nicole’’ on the Outd

Anderson: Minn. couple Pat and Nicole Reeve pursue success in outdoors TV

Pat Reeve and his wife Nicole, of the acclaimed outdoor TV show "Driven with Pat & Nicole'' on the Outdoor Channel, is, as you read this, on a plane to somewhere. Or soon will be. Or just was. Nicole is there as well, along with their checked bags filled with video cameras and hunting gear.

Anderson: Legislature must clamp down on deer, elk farms to limit CWD damage

Shutter deer, elk farms to protect Minnesota's valuable wild deer herd.
Mark Newman, left, of Hudson, Wis., cast a fly line in the dome at the St. Croix Valley Recreaton Center in Stillwater, tuning up with casting instruc

Anderson: For a love of the fly cast, you pretend to be knee-deep in the Brule

Dome in Stillwater was as good a place as any to do a little fly rod work.
Theodore Roosevelt 1900, when nominated for vice president.
Hand colored halftone of a contemporary 1900 portrait. (North Wind Picture Archives via AP

Anderson: Writings of Theodore Roosevelt called for preserving nature

Few are echoing the words of the president who left a legacy of touting the outdoors.
Cole Anderson, left, and Max Kelley relaxed in snow after hiking on snowshoes to a rocky peak in the Bridger Mountains of Montana.

Anderson: A shift on the fly in Big Sky country

When an injury alters skiing plans in Montana, it's a chance to revisit snowshoes
Anderson: Parallels — and lessons? — watching fate of western grizzlies

Anderson: Parallels — and lessons? — watching fate of western grizzlies

Montana passed on opportunity for hunt, but lessons may exist. Issues are akin to our Minnesota wolves.
Val Beland of Ely has raced dogs worldwide, from Alaska to Europe. She also raced in a demonstration event at the Calgary Winter Olympics in 1988.

Anderson: Ely couple's lifelong passion for mushing carries them far

But for lack of a little luck, Don and Val Beland — who in the 1970s, '80s and '90s traveled from Alaska to Austria to race sled dogs — might have been Olympians.
Pheasants Forever's annual Pheasant Fest and Quail Classic meets Feb. 16-18 in Sioux Falls, S.D.

Anderson: Pheasants Forever stays focused on the work amid habitat threats

National gathering in S.D. will bring threats to fore.
Dick Duerre (to Ed Crozier’s left, with a haul of pheasants not many years ago in North Dakota.

Anderson: Burnsville's Crozier tells tales of dogs and friends

Hunting companions grace the title of Ed Crozier's book about his seven decades of hunting
Stephan Lyogky (left) and his father, Ivan Lyogky (right), of Hartville, Ohio, bagged first and third place, respectively, in the Brainerd Jaycees ice

Brainerd fishing contest winners pass lie detector tests, keep prizes

Contest organizers said they received anonymous information that raised suspicions, but Ivan Lyogky and his sons were tested separately by a licensed polygraph examiner and no deception was found.
Minnesota duck hunters are fewer. Still many waterfowlers are committed to conservation -- evident by the work of Ducks Unlimited, writes columnist De

Anderson: Waterfowlers have shown commitment that is lacking among many politicians

DU volunteers, who will gather in Willmar, and others like them, seem to be all that's left to do the work.
Stephan Lyogky (left) and his father, Ivan Lyogky (right), of Hartville, Ohio, bagged first and third place, respectively, in last weekend’s Brainer

Winner says he, family caught fish legally in Brainerd ice-fishing contest

An Ohio family says they didn't break any rules during a Brainerd ice fishing tournament in which they won a pick-up truck, cash and an ice auger.
Stephan Lyogky (left) and his father, Ivan Lyogky (right), of Hartville, Ohio, bagged first and third place, respectively, in last weekend’s Brainer

Brainerd Jaycees investigate possible cheating at ice fishing tournament

A major investigation is underway to determine whether some of this year's competing anglers, including the winner of a new pickup truck, deceived Brainerd Jaycees Ice Fishing Extravaganza organizers.
Thaw The Bwel Gyi, left, of St. Paul, and his nephew, Sahloa Moa Eh, 14, fished on Lake Owasso last weekend as part of an outdoors event Jan. 27 spons

Anderson: Helping a refugee community learn, one hook at a time

DNR reaches out to group of Burmese refugees.
Bud Grant’s Bloomington basement reveals his life’s passion: the outdoors. Hunting stories, not football memories, have dominated the former Vikin

At age 90, Grant still wonders: 'How did I get here?'

Never one to look back — 90-year-old Hall of Fame coach Bud Grant doesn't dwell on the Vikings' Super Bowl losses — he nonetheless at times entertains the introspection that advancing age nurtures.

Anderson: Placid getaway in nature can ease many stings

So, OK, the Vikings aren't in the Super Bowl. But measured by the amount of open space this state provides its residents Minnesota remains a winner.

Great outdoors: Comparing Super Bowl states and Minnesota

A look at how Minnesota outdoors stacks up with Massachusetts and Pennsylvania
Sibley mine headframe, 1906, in Ely.

Anderson: Let's remember that mining and Ely have a long, tangled history

Early job Up North introduced the depth of the long-standing drama.
Anderson: Will millennials step up as hunting and angling continue decline?

Anderson: Will millennials step up as hunting and angling continue decline?

Many millennials aren't hunters and anglers like their forebears — and that spells trouble.
Land Tawney is president and chief executive officer of Backcountry Hunters and Anglers. The Missoula, Mont.-based conservation group is young compare

Anderson: Tawney is the face of young, passionate conservation group

Land Tawney's Montana group is creative in its approach but no less dedicated to protecting land
K-Drill Auger, for Outdoors Weekend.

Anderson: Minnesotan bores deeper into market with his electric drill auger

While many Minnesotans were huddled inside their homes over the holidays, hiding from subzero temperatures, ice fishing guru Steve Baumann had a crew on a frozen Twin Cities lake.
Dick “Griz’’ Grzywinski of St. Paul pulled a sled full of fishing gear onto Chisago Lake last week, where between 5 and 7 inches of ice was foun

Anderson: For now, ice fishing mostly on foot

Conditions vary, but good ice has been late to form on area lakes
This photograph, of lunch on the sands of Sand Pointe Lake during a Rainy River trip in 1910, typifies the hand-bound chronicles compiled in a new boo

Anderson: Northern wilderness traveler's journals are window into another world

Compiled in a new book, one man's meticulous journals into border country are a rich snapshot of early adventure.
A ruffed grouse fed on crabapples during a winter snowstorm. Snow is critical for these birds in winter, helping them to stay warm while protecting th

Ruffed grouse need snow for warmth, protection

To avoid presenting themselves as easy pickings for predators, ruffed grouse burrow into snow — when it's available — and disappear. This also allows grouse to "thermo-regulate,'' or stay warm.
Surrounded by a late-autumn formation of ice, a small patch of open water was the final landing place for this retrieved December goose.

Anderson: Narrow scope helps hunters keep fruitful bird fields intact

By hunting small flocks and bringing less noise, fruitful bird fields remain so
Nancy Burkes quickly took to "cutting" horses, placing sixth last year in the amateur finals of a world championship event.

Anderson: Hunting maybe be first love, but horse riding is current one for Minnesotan

Minnesota woman balances wide range of outdoors pursuits.
Jim Staricha owns Northland Towing in Isle, Minn., on the shores of Mille Lacs, where he is busy every winter recovering vehicles that have fallen thr

Anderson: Take it from an expert, 'No fish is worth dying for'

Jim Staricha gives survival advice to anglers and others unfortunate enough to break through winter ice.
Wolves are likely to associated hunters' gunfire with an easy meal.

Anderson: Wolves known to stalk hunter's kill scene for an easy meal

Wolves likely can readily associate the sound of gunfire with an easy meal in the form of the gut pile that remains after hunters field-dress their quarry, says a wolf expert.
Hunters who vary the stands they use during deer season might have the best chance of leaving the woods with their quarry, according to one expert who

Anderson: Study tries to answer what makes a deer tick

An intensive study sheds useful light on why whitetails act like they do
Give hunters some credit, writes Dennis Anderson: They don't hunt drunk.

Anderson: No, hunters don't drink and hunt

Some things in this world are beyond debate. One of them: Hunters don't hunt drunk.

Field report: Annual early-season warnings about thin ice going unheeded

Ice conditions last weekend varied on Upper Red Lake, with several unsafe areas on the lake even for foot travel.
STOKING THE FIRE: After dinner, the group departs to various barns and shacks, hoping for sleep before rising early Saturday to hunt. Here Dennis Ande

Anderson: Wisconsin tradition remains as deer season begins

Change inevitably comes, but just as inevitably much stays comfortably the same
A smattering of signs like this are appearing in Minnesota farmlands this fall as a protest by some farmers over implementation of Gov. Mark Dayton's

Anderson: Hunters don't deserve some farmers' ire over buffer law

Some farmers are taking their gripes out on hunters, believing hunters' interests in pheasant habitat, and not the public's aspiration for cleaner lakes and rivers, are what's behind the governor's desire to improve state waters.
Brian Anderson, left, of Oak Grove, Nathan Hilson of Duluth and Dick Anderson of Eveleth gathered for lunch Saturday on a snowy, slow deer opener near

Anderson: Even when deer are absent, alertness required by hunting is satisfying

An estimated 500,000 Minnesotans participated in the 2017 firearms deer season opener.
Floyd Lavallee, center, and members of his family clean ducks at the Sports Afield Duck Club in St. Ambroise, Manitoba. At left is Floyd's wife, Noell

Anderson: Into the vintage rhythms of an old-time duck hunting lodge in Manitoba

Jimmy Robinson is gone, but his duck camp clings to rhythms of the season.
Moody late October days prevailed last week in southern Manitoba in advance of a big blow Thursday that saw daylong winds gust to 50 mph. But the hunt

Anderson: Feeling the true north of Canada in wet, cold duck hunting adventure

Duck hunting on a Canadian marsh is a sensory experience.
A Korean War-era tent now serves as base, duct tape and all.

Anderson: 100 years on, Minnesota family's deer camp endures

The Malvig camp still sticks to its foundation: Eating, playing, sleeping is done in a tent, as it has been for generations.
A group of hunters look for pheasants while hiking a state wildlife management area on Saturday near Marshall. Gov. Mark Dayton was a few hundred yard

Anderson: Use of Italian ammo at pheasant opener triggers a kerfuffle

A kerfuffle has arisen over the brand of shotgun shells gifted to the hunters and guides at the governor's opener. The steel shells were made by Fiocchi, an Italian ammunition manufacturer.

Anderson: No getting around link between forests, grouse health

The birds and sensible state forest management are intertwined.
DNR conservation officer Lt. Gary Nordseth checks Gov. Mark Dayton’s license before he went afield Saturday, first day of the 2017 ringneck season.

Anderson: Pheasant season begins at governor's invitation, Marshall's hospitality

Marshall was chosen to host 153 hunters from near and far who, accompanied by Gov. Mark Dayton and some 50 guides, on Saturday morning scattered into the hinterlands.
Southwestern Minnesota embraces its pheasant hunt traditions.

Anderson: In southwest Minnesota, community leaders know pheasants mean opportunity

Witness the efforts by nine southwest Minnesota counties to enhance the bottom lines of area businesses by marketing the region as the state's go-to place to hunt.
Hunters drawing down on ducks in the air is part of Minnesota tradition, but change is needed to keep it that way.

Anderson: Lack of ducks, pheasants reflects neglect of conservation

Just about everything to do with the state's farmland wildlife has, in the aggregate, gotten worse.
John Latimer records seasonal observations about birds, trees and mammals. He was first introduced to phenology in 1979.

Anderson: Minnesota's phenologists see the natural world in a new way

An interesting bunch, phenologists, about whom most people know nothing — including the thousands of Minnesotans who in autumn scatter into the hinterlands.
Willy Smith, left, of Willmar, and his son Matthew, tracked a pair of Canada geese that flew over their blind in the Minnesota River Valley backwaters

Anderson: Ducks scarce at Minnesota River hunting reunion

Season's first duck hunt meant venturing back to west-central town with decades of fond memories
Many memories have been made at the shack of the Kasota Kan Klub near Willmar, Minn.

Anderson: Minnesota duck hunters always are ready for one more flight

Duck hunting is on hard times, but traditions at the shacks are steadfast.
The tools carried by the traveling boat and motor mechanics assigned to the Mille Lacs bass tournament help keep anglers’ boats in the water anfd co

Anderson: Skilled hands of technicians keep major fishing tournaments afloat

With their pickups and trailers stuffed with tools, and their mechanical prowess on a par with NASCAR'S best pit bosses, they play a vital role in the success of big-time fishing tournaments.
Idaho bass pro Brandon Palaniuk was named Toyota Bassmaster Angler of the Year late Sunday afternoon, winning $100,000 after three days of competition

Palaniuk wins BASS tournament on Mille Lacs

Brandon Palaniuk found bass worth $100,000.
Minnesota bass pro Seth Feider caught five smallmouth bass weighing 22 pounds, 1 ounce, on Friday, giving him a two-day bag of 44-9 in the Toyota Bass

Idaho fishing pro Palaniuk lands 6-pounder to keep Bassmaster points lead

The late catch - four minutes before the end of fishing for the day - nearly kept him from returning to the tournament check-in on time.
Brandon Palaniuk of Hayden, Idaho, was the leading Elite Series angler heading into the three-day Toyota Bassmaster Angler of the Year Championship on

Anderson: Bassmaster Elite leader Brandon Palaniuk takes to Lake Mille Lacs this weekend

The Idaho native has recorded six top 12 Bassmaster Elite Series finishes this season, and it's taken a hard-driving work ethic and the support of others.
Seth Feider landed a plump largemouth bass while practice fishing on Lake Minnetonka in advance of the big Bassmaster tournament that begins Thursday

Anderson: Feider returns to defend big Bassmaster win on Mille Lacs

To earn his win last year on Mille Lacs, Seth Feider stunned the likes of famed bass anglers Kevin VanDam and Mike Iaconelli, among others, by dominating the three-day tournament, beginning to end.
Muskie fishing on Lake of the Woods’ Big Narrows — which lies about halfway between Minnesota’s Northwest Angle and Kenora, Ontario — can quic

Anderson: Lake of the Woods, Ontario bring out best muskie fishing

Muskie fishing is its own kind of addiction, and most who are afflicted relapse happily, cast after cast.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife waterfowl surveys show a disconnect from the realities on the ground in the Dakotas and eastern Montana.

Anderson: Optimistic duck numbers from our professional wildlife managers don't add up

FWS officials apparently were somehow oblivious this summer to one of the worst droughts in history gripping the Dakotas and eastern Montana.
“First Wave’’ by Robert Hautman

Anderson: Hautman brothers paint wonderful art

The three Hautman brothers, all gifted artists, were made by Minnesota.

Nature's finest: The artistry of the Hautman Brothers

An exhibit of 50 new waterfowl, wildlife and landscape paintings by three brothers titled "Nature's Finest: The Artistry of the Hautman brothers," will run from Sept. 8 through Nov. 5
Trailered boats are not allowed in Glacier National Park beginning this summer to avoid contaminating park waters with zebra mussels or other invasive

Anderson: Want to see invasives prevention plan with teeth? Head out West.

Minnesota's early attempts in recent decades to prevent infiltration by the invasive species appear lame next to what I witnessed in Montana and parts of British Columbia.
Twin Cities fishing guide Josh Stevenson, left, with Kid Rock and a northern pike he caught Sunday after appearing at Grand Casino in Hinckley and bef

Anderson: Multitalented Kid Rock can also fish

Detroit rocker Kid Rock squeezed in a fishing session after his show at Grand Casino in Hinckley last weekend and before headlining the Iowa State Fair.
Rick Van Bergen’s field trial champion Labrador retriever, “Plug,’’ is one example of why the veteran trainer was inducted into the National R

Anderson: State has long been a hotbed for field dogs

Decades before retrievers were the most popular canines in America, they were Minnesota's top dogs. Labradors have long been No. 1 in this state, with golden retrievers, Chesapeake Bay retrievers and flat-coated retrievers commonplace here, as well.
Nora Ross is one of the most celebrated trapshooters of all time. She'll be at GameFair for six days when the annual outdoor festival opens Friday at

Anderson: Master trap shooter Nora Ross to share insights at Game Fair

Her intent during her 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. seminars at the outdoor extravaganza is to teach trapshooting to shotgunners eager to learn from a master.
Ted Capra was in his life obsessed by all things fishing. He died Wednesday, Aug. 2, in the Twin Cities at age 80.

Ted Capra made fishing his business and his life

Ted Capra, whose victories as a competitive angler span an unsurpassed five decades in Minnesota, died Wednesday after a long history of heart problems. He was 80.
The Star Tribune's Dennis Anderson will spend part of a day with the Twins and Joe Mauer on Saturday when the columnist tosses out the first pitch.

Anderson: Pheasants Forever merits my best pitch at Target Field

Star Tribune columnist will throw out the first pitch Saturday because it's the 35th anniversary of the bird group -- an idea he proposed long ago.
Maren Kesselhon, 11, was bitten while dangling from a paddle board on Island Lake north of Duluth.

Anderson: In this Minnesota whodunit, chomp on girl's foot points to muskie

Taking stock of the biting incident on Island Lake: Signs point to the work of a muskie or northern pike.
A walleye is netted, caught on the Twin Pines Resort boat at sunset Wednesday, July 29, 2015, during an evening excursion on Lake Mille Lacs.

Anderson: Limits being pushed for walleye fishing on Mille Lacs

Chances seem good the 11,000-pound allocation will be sufficient to carry anglers through Labor Day, after which Mille Lacs walleye fishing is closed for the open-water season.
Courtesy of Lindner Media Productions
Al Lindner as a kid dreamed of making a living in the fishing industry. The Brainerd area resident, along with h

Anderson: Lindner family to share secrets on making a living fishing

The Lindners have caught tens of thousands of fish. They've written countless fishing books and articles and filmed even more countless television shows, culminating in 1974 with the founding of In-Fisherman, the parent company for the sport fishing magazine and nationally syndicated radio and TV shows of the same name that they sold to Primedia in 1998.
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