Brad Dokken is a reporter and editor of the Herald's Sunday Northland Outdoors pages. Dokken joined the Herald company in November 1985 as a copy editor for Agweek magazine and joined the Herald staff in 1989. He worked as a copy editor in the features and news departments before becoming outdoors editor in 1998. He also writes a blog called Compass Points. A Roseau, Minn., native, Dokken is a graduate of Bemidji State University.
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EAST GRAND FORKS, Minn.—Rob Horken might best be remembered as "Ernie the Angler," his longtime alter ego who did weekly summer fishing reports on WDAZ-TV Channel 8 in Grand Forks, but in retirement, Horken keeps his feet in the fishing waters by building custom fishing rods. Any size, any color, Horken probably can build it. The retirement gig is keeping the owner of Rob's Rod Repair and Custom Built Fishing Rods busy in his East Grand Forks shop. As busy as he wants to be, at least, and that's just the way Horken likes it.
BAUDETTE, Minn. — This is a rant — about those new-style gas containers equipped with safety features that make it impossible for most of us to dispense the gasoline they're designed to hold. How do I hate them? Let me count the ways. Someday, I'd like to find the people who developed these safety features and turn them loose on a remote northern Minnesota highway. Then, I'd like to see them try to pour fuel from one of their devil cans into a car that has run out of gas.
ON LAKE OF THE WOODS, Minn. — Anyone who says walleye fishing — or any kind of fishing, for that matter — is an equal opportunity pastime wasn't in Jason's Laumb's boat on the opening weekend of Minnesota's 2018 walleye season. Despite weather that was about as close to perfect as you could ask for on a Minnesota Fishing Opener, the Black Cloud loomed large, at times, for a couple of fishermen in our crew. I was one of them.
LANCASTER, Minn.—A wildfire that broke out early Tuesday afternoon in Clow Township about 10 miles northwest of Lancaster and later jumped the border into Manitoba was about 70 percent contained as of Wednesday morning, officials said. According to Christi Powers, an information officer for the Minnesota Interagency Fire Center in Grand Rapids, air crews Wednesday morning, May 16, estimated the size of the fire at 1,300 acres in an area that's about half forest and half grasslands. A cabin was confirmed destroyed by the fire, Powers said.
If there was such a thing as a perfect weather forecast going into the Minnesota Fishing Opener, it would look a lot like the predictions on tap for Saturday and Sunday across northern Minnesota from the National Weather Service. Fishing season for walleyes and northern pike officially gets underway at 12:01 a.m. Saturday, and some 500,000 anglers are expected to hit their favorite lake or stream in pursuit of Minnesota's state fish, the walleye. Walleyes and pike have been off-limits on Minnesota inland waters since late February.
ROSS, Minn.—Two months after winning the lottery, Debbie Kujava and her brother, Dennis Kujava, are adjusting to their new lives as millionaires. The winning Lotto America ticket Debbie bought as part of a Jackpot Bundle on Tuesday, March 13, at Holiday Stationstores in Roseau, Minn., was worth $22.8 million, and the $13.5 million cash option she chose was whittled down to $9.4 million after the required tax withholding. The odds of winning were about 1 in 24 million, Debbie Kujava says. She kept it quiet until March 19, when Lotto America made it official.
BEMIDJI, Minn. — If just the thought of forest tent caterpillars is enough to make your skin crawl, there's favorable news in the woods this spring as trees begin leafing out across the region. This year's tent caterpillar season looks pretty meek across Minnesota, forest experts say. "It's hard to know exactly, as it is every year, but we're not poised for a major outbreak or anything like that," said Mike Parisio, forest health specialist for the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources in Bemidji. "I'd say we're in for a pretty typical year."
BEMIDJI, Minn. — If you're one of those goofball anglers thinking it would be fun to go ice fishing on Minnesota's fishing opener, prepare to be disappointed. There very likely will be ice floating around some northern Minnesota lakes come opening day, but you'll need a boat to reach it. That annual rite of spring known as the Minnesota walleye opener kicks off at 12:01 a.m. Saturday, May 12.
GREENBUSH, Minn.—A fire that broke out Sunday night in western Roseau County in far northern Minnesota was 90 percent contained as of Tuesday morning, officials say. Known as the "County Road 7 Fire," the wildfire burned about 4,000 acres of mostly grass and swampland habitat north of Roseau County Road 7 about 15 miles northwest of Greenbush, Minn., said Christi Powers, an information officer for the Minnesota Interagency Fire Center in Grand Rapids, Minn.
GREENBUSH, Minn. -- Firefighters are working to control a large grass fire that started Sunday night about 15 miles northwest of Greenbush in western Roseau County. Known as the “County Road 7 Fire,” the fire had burned about 5,800 acres of grass and brushland as of Monday afternoon, said Adam Munstenteiger, area forestry supervisor for the Department of Natural Resources in Warroad, Minn.