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Ruffed Grouse Society clears, mows hunter walking trail

CASS LAKE — On AUG. 25, members of the Ruffed Grouse Society donated equipment and effort to clear and mow the Jingo Lake Hunter Walking Trail north of Talmoon.

Marty Niewind, head of the Grand Rapids chapter, supplied the ASV mower, trailer and transport vehicle. The crew put in about 13 hours.

“We have great grouse hunting here and several active RGS chapters,” Niewind said. “We want to help make hunting better for our neighbors and the businesses that benefit from grouse hunter tourism.”

Although there was some RGS money available to offset fuel costs, Niewind picked up the tab for that, too.

The Jingo Lake trail system is on U.S. Forest Service Chippewa National Forest land, which is affected by sharply reduced budgets for maintaining hunter walking trails in recent years, said Todd Tisler of the U.S. Forest Service said.

“We really appreciate the efforts of these volunteers, and we would like to work with RGS in the future on more projects that benefit grouse hunters and habitat,” Tisler said.

Ted Dick, grouse coordinator for the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources also hopes to expand these cooperative projects in the future.

“I work with biologists from across the country, our grouse habitat and public land availability is as good as anywhere and we want to keep it the best in the country by helping wherever we can,” Dick said.

The Ruffed Grouse Society and the Forest Service are working to cooperate on more trails in the Bemidji, Blackduck and Walker areas.