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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
Anderson: Dirt poor? Not this farmer near Northfield

Anderson: Dirt poor? Not this farmer near Northfield

Special care keeps the Legvold farm rich and productive. Dave Legvold was honored recently by Gov. Mark Dayton for his innovative and persistent conservation efforts on the approximately 800 acres he farms

Anderson: Group pushes for DNR to stock bigger walleyes in Lake Minnetonka

Lake Minnetonka is stocked by the DNR with walleye fingerlings measuring about 6 inches long but reproduction is minimal.
Anderson: North Shore smelt outings of past aren't forgotten

Anderson: North Shore smelt outings of past aren't forgotten

Fish were plentiful, as was camaraderie, during the erstwhile North Shore ritual.
Anderson: It's Earth Day, but people should care every day

Anderson: It's Earth Day, but people should care every day

Worry, if you will, about the big picture — say global warming. But act locally. Join a conservation or environmental group. Get outside more. And take a friend or family member along.
Anderson: Readiness, not result, is big in turkey pursuit

Anderson: Readiness, not result, is big in turkey pursuit

It doesn't happen very often, but sometimes you set up for a big tom roosted nearby and at daybreak he flies down to within shooting range. So you want to be on time.
Anderson: Tough-to-beat weather enhances turkey opener

Anderson: Tough-to-beat weather enhances turkey opener

Wednesday morning, just as the weather turned for the better, turkey hunting began anew in Minnesota.
Judge tosses poaching case over use of tracking device

Judge tosses poaching case over use of tracking device

A judge has tossed out the Minnesota DNR's highest-profile deer-poaching bust in recent memory, saying a GPS device that conservation officers attached to the suspect's pickup was illegal.
Anderson: Lake Vermilion is complicated - and it's familiar

Anderson: Lake Vermilion is complicated - and it's familiar

Concern about Lake Vermilion's walleyes is focused on the west end, where sufficient numbers of big fish exist, but fewer small ones.

Anderson: Mille Lacs bait flip-flop fraught with peril

Given Monday's DNR flip-flop, even the most naïve Minnesotans can no longer believe science is the prime consideration in management of the state's resources.
Anderson: Grzywinski and the Mississippi go hand-in-hand

Anderson: Grzywinski and the Mississippi go hand-in-hand

Most everybody knows to fish the Mississippi this time of year, but not everybody knows how
Anderson: With great waters come great anglers

Anderson: With great waters come great anglers

Minnesota not only has more people fishing than all or virtually all other states, but it has better anglers, too. The average angler growing up hereabouts is anything but average.
Anderson: Seasoned outfitters exemplify long tradition of Northwest Sportshow

Anderson: Seasoned outfitters exemplify long tradition of Northwest Sportshow

The long-running show begins Wednesday at the Minneapolis Convention Center.
Anderson: DNR, Chippewa talks on Mille Lacs should be public

Anderson: DNR, Chippewa talks on Mille Lacs should be public

An agreement forged more than a quarter-century ago between the state and the Mille Lacs band appears to be the last time the DNR and the Chippewa in this state publicly agreed on anything significant about Mille Lacs.
Anderson: One day, Mille Lacs might be bass mecca, too

Anderson: One day, Mille Lacs might be bass mecca, too

Most state anglers, especially its bass specialists, consider Mille Lacs a trophy bass destination — and want to see it stay that way.
New walleye season on Mille Lacs will be catch-and-release

New walleye season on Mille Lacs will be catch-and-release

Policy will be catch-and-release only, with no live bait, this season.
Anderson: Conflicts of conservation near and far

Anderson: Conflicts of conservation near and far

Two cases, one nearby, the other roiling Montana, indicate that money retains its long-held role.

Anderson: Conservation begs for fresh faces

Lately in Minnesota, it's most of the same conservation advocates making the same pleas to the ever-fewer elected officials at conservation events.
A veteran hunter talks wild turkey

A veteran hunter talks wild turkey

Dick Alford has written five books about wild turkeys. Three are sold out. Two, including a wild-turkey cookbook and his most recent, "Up Close and Personal" — a how-to guide to turkey hunting — are available.
March 5: Bass fishing's Super Bowl coming to Mille Lacs next fall

March 5: Bass fishing's Super Bowl coming to Mille Lacs next fall

Bass Angler of the Year event is set to bring positive attention to the troubled lake

50 anglers at B.A.S.S. championship to split $1 million

The angler with the highest yearlong points after the Mille Lacs tournament in September will win $100,000, with the remainder split among the other 49 anglers.
Minnesota fishing champ in hot pursuit of fame – and big bass

Minnesota fishing champ in hot pursuit of fame – and big bass

Trevor Lo, a champion for the Gophers, heads to Oklahoma to compete with fishing's big dogs.

Anderson: Deer hunters group opposes expanding crossbow hunting

Bow hunters worry the quality of Minnesota archery deer hunting could decline if inexperienced hunters — perhaps lots of them — go afield in the fall.
Anderson: DNR proposes holding deer numbers down in NE Minn. to help moose

Anderson: DNR proposes holding deer numbers down in NE Minn. to help moose

The proposal to hold deer numbers down in northeast Minnesota came as a surprise considering many hunters across that area have had trouble finding deer there.

Anderson: Long-awaited project to restore Marsh Lake finally arrives

Throughout most of recorded time, Marsh Lake was an oasis for all manner of migratory birds. That is, until the 1930s.
Bighead carp caught in Minnesota River near New Ulm

Bighead carp caught in Minnesota River near New Ulm

A bighead carp has been caught in the Minnesota River, the species’ first confirmed capture there and a sign that aggressive invasive fish continue their…
Anderson: Scalia's death symbolizes the fight ahead for outdoorsmen

Anderson: Scalia's death symbolizes the fight ahead for outdoorsmen

The recent death of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia while on a hunting trip to Texas is reason again for Minnesotans to consider societal changes that are fast accelerating here.

Anderson: Mille Lacs walleye numbers are 'off the charts'

But most won't be big enough to keep under the DNR's proposal.
Anderson: Wisdom flows on the St. Croix as fishermen monitor thin ice

Anderson: Wisdom flows on the St. Croix as fishermen monitor thin ice

A winter that began with thin ice nonetheless entrances St. Croix River anglers.
Anderson: Market sees greater interest, just in time for Twin Cities RV show

Anderson: Market sees greater interest, just in time for Twin Cities RV show

With gas prices falling below $1.50 a gallon in some parts of the metro, dealers at the 48th Minneapolis/St. Paul RV, Vacation and Camping Show smiled Thursday when doors to the Minneapolis Convention Center opened .
Anderson: Brainerd ice fishing extravaganza blends fishing, fun and prizes

Anderson: Brainerd ice fishing extravaganza blends fishing, fun and prizes

Many trek to Brainerd Jaycees contest to win, but the party welcomes all comers.

Anderson: When snowstorms beckon, not threaten

This week's snowfall was cause for celebration.
Legality of evidence questioned in deer poacher case

Legality of evidence questioned in deer poacher case

The defense says the DNR got access through illegal methods.
Anderson: Ice fishing keeps drawing Hoosier to Mille Lacs every year

Anderson: Ice fishing keeps drawing Hoosier to Mille Lacs every year

Dreaming of a winter escape, some call Lake Mille Lacs home for a week. For Willy Adkins of Indiana, every year since 1975.

Anderson: Cold, hard cash is quarry as ice fishing becomes competition

Competitive ice fishermen — yes, there is such a thing — will be on Chisago Lake on Sunday, vying for thousands in cash and other prizes in a North American Ice Fishing Circuit (NAIFC) contest.
Q&A: DNR fish and wildlife director Ed Boggess

Q&A: DNR fish and wildlife director Ed Boggess

An Iowa native who grew up on a small farm, Ed Boggess talks about hunting, fishing and, especially, conservation, past and present in this Q&A weeks before his retirement.

Anderson: Price range at Boat Show goes from free to very pricey

As much money as you have — or can borrow — you can spend at the Minneapolis Boat Show, but some of the best takeaways at the show are free, including four publications produced by the DNR.
Anderson: Conservation leader paints bleak picture of future

Anderson: Conservation leader paints bleak picture of future

To avoid environmental catastrophe, conservationists must envision the future, based on current land and water management trends.
Dayton proposes some poachers be charged with felonies

Dayton proposes some poachers be charged with felonies

Tougher penalties would apply to illegal taking of wildlife valued at $2,000 or more.
Anderson: Technology enhances chilly thrill of ice fishing

Anderson: Technology enhances chilly thrill of ice fishing

Most modern winter fishing shacks, whether portable or hard-sided, are wired for entertainment and productivity.
Anderson: Outdoors artist adds another award to esteemed career

Anderson: Outdoors artist adds another award to esteemed career

David Maass, 86, keeps going, earning more awards and fanfare.

Anderson: Pine Island couple plants roots in shooting preserve they run

Butch and Nancy Owens have run Hidden Valley Gamebirds since 1988 but an end is in sight.
Ex-Vikings coach Bud Grant crash-landed plane in October

Ex-Vikings coach Bud Grant crash-landed plane in October

Retired Vikings coach Bud Grant and a friend crash-landed a plane in Canada this fall while in pursuit of mallards and other fowl.
Anderson: Fillmore County farmers understand conservation

Anderson: Fillmore County farmers understand conservation

The Goldsmiths of southeast Minnesota are honored for a century and a half of care for land and animals
Despite best efforts of hunters, coyote numbers continue to expand

Despite best efforts of hunters, coyote numbers continue to expand

Their numbers have significantly expanded, farmyards to suburbs.
DNR losing two key officials to retirement

DNR losing two key officials to retirement

Ed Boggess will leave in February on the heels of Ken Soring's departure.
Anderson: Hunt for Christmas goose is a walk in park

Anderson: Hunt for Christmas goose is a walk in park

Instead of the usual trek on treacherous ice, the route to success was over open water.
Anderson: New breed of anglers releases big fish

Anderson: New breed of anglers releases big fish

Recent muskie news illuminates the evolution of outdoors ethics.
Happy 75th to state's oldest sportsman's club

Happy 75th to state's oldest sportsman's club

The Fur Fin & Feather Club was a social outfit founded on the principle that fraternity once a week among hunters and anglers is a good thing

Deer harvest numbers climb in Minnesota, Wisconsin

Minnesota firearms deer hunters have registered 128,174 deer as of Tuesday, according to the Department of Natural Resources, compared to 112,715 last year for the same period
Anderson: Shacked up, happily, for Wisconsin deer opener

Anderson: Shacked up, happily, for Wisconsin deer opener

The start of a new season means a trip to an undisclosed location in Wisconsin for deer hunting and camaraderie.

Anderson: You can weigh in on the Great Muskie Stocking Debate

Note to walleye anglers and northern pike spearers: Your chance to be heard regarding muskie stocking will occur in the next few weeks.Show up —…

Anderson: Popular Ducks Unlimited columnist runs afoul of his bosses

Don Thomas dared to criticize a wealthy donor, and was fired.
Anderson: New Brighton woman made deer opener a success despite injury

Anderson: New Brighton woman made deer opener a success despite injury

Jane Heinks didn't let an injured arm stop her from bagging a buck.
Possible world-record muskie caught on Mille Lacs

Possible world-record muskie caught on Mille Lacs

Robert Hawkins hooked a 57-inch muskie estimated to weigh more than 50 pounds.
Anderson: During Armistice Day Blizzard of 1940, it 'seemed too nice to hunt'

Anderson: During Armistice Day Blizzard of 1940, it 'seemed too nice to hunt'

The snow came first, beginning in early afternoon, with big flakes covering the ground. The wind — up to 80 miles an hour — and precipitous temperature drops of as much as 50 degrees followed.
Anderson: Firearms deer opener takes party to familiar perch

Anderson: Firearms deer opener takes party to familiar perch

The pull of the woods stoked optimism, even as prospects of bagging a buck faded Saturday for the deer opener.

Anderson: Abundance of deer hunting info only a click away

Deer hunters will find very useful a Department of Natural Resources interactive map released Thursday afternoon.
Anderson: Get to know Minnesota deer laws

Anderson: Get to know Minnesota deer laws

Staying legal while deer hunting in Minnesota can be tricky. Laws and regulations governing everything from tagging a downed deer to registering and transporting it must be followed.

Anderson: Justice wheels grind slowly in poaching case

The poaching case against Joshua Liebl led Gov. Mark Dayton in the last legislative session to urge lawmakers to toughen the state's penalties in serious poaching cases — a request that was largely ignored.
Anderson: Hunters with gadgets not shooting game any easier

Anderson: Hunters with gadgets not shooting game any easier

The notion that modern gadget-laden hunters have an easier time than their forbears doesn't hold up
Anderson: From father to daughter, love of the hunt passes down

Anderson: From father to daughter, love of the hunt passes down

Kyle Larson never had an opportunity to hunt with his dad but is making memories with daughter Lydia.
Walleye ice fishing on Mille Lacs is assured with deal on limit

Walleye ice fishing on Mille Lacs is assured with deal on limit

Anglers and businesses relieved after DNR sets harvest limit for Mille Lacs.
Anderson: Hunters ask where Camp Ripley's big bucks have gone

Anderson: Hunters ask where Camp Ripley's big bucks have gone

Hunters ask why Camp Ripley's deer, once the stuff of legend, no longer measure up

Anderson: Chippewa gain right to hunt deer at night in Wisconsin

A federal court this week ruled that Chippewa in northern Wisconsin can hunt deer at night with high-powered rifles. Hunting at night with torches is a Chippewa tradition, their attorney said.
Anderson: SE Minnesota sees a ringneck revival

Anderson: SE Minnesota sees a ringneck revival

Not typically a part of Minnesota's prime pheasant range, southeast Minnesota has seen a resurgence of the birds in recent years.
Anderson: Pheasants Forever still intent on helping beautiful birds thrive

Anderson: Pheasants Forever still intent on helping beautiful birds thrive

The number of fundraising banquets the national group holds are likely to grow in 2016.
Anderson: Exhilaration takes flight on duck opener

Anderson: Exhilaration takes flight on duck opener

Sometimes ducks make it for the opener; the thrill of the hunt always does. Traditions remain a satisfying part of that annual gathering of optimists
Anderson: Six still enough for Minnesota's duck hunting season

Anderson: Six still enough for Minnesota's duck hunting season

DNR rejected ideas for bonus teal or teal-only early season.
Anderson: Local gloom amid national duck boom

Anderson: Local gloom amid national duck boom

Record duck numbers are reported nationally, but that's not true in Minnesota
Anderson: Behold, a governor with conservation in mind

Anderson: Behold, a governor with conservation in mind

Suit and tie aside, Mark Dayton has shown his dedication to protecting regional wildlife.
Anderson: Here's how we'll pay for replenishing pheasants

Anderson: Here's how we'll pay for replenishing pheasants

State, federal agencies likely will share the cost in acquiring land needed for repopulation.
Anderson: Longtime guide Marv Koep still has it

Anderson: Longtime guide Marv Koep still has it

A get-together with longtime fishing guide Marv Koep establishes clearly that he's not slipping one bit.
Anderson: Hunting survives as a safe haven for individualism

Anderson: Hunting survives as a safe haven for individualism

Voluntary disconnect from society, often viewed as self-serving, is the perk that outdoorsmen live for.
Anderson: The road out west beckons, just as it always has

Anderson: The road out west beckons, just as it always has

Open country and its treasures call to the west, as they did even back when driving was work.
Anderson: Casting a line for muskies is a unique challenge

Anderson: Casting a line for muskies is a unique challenge

Getting prized muskies to respond requires an ability to read the water, and plenty of patience.
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