DNR Report: July 12
District 6 - Two Harbors area
Conservation Officer Mary Manning (Hovland) worked boating-while-intoxicated enforcement for Operation Dry Water during the pre-holiday weekend. Manning also checked area campgrounds on complaints of permanent campers. All sites were vacant when checked. The officer also used the rainy days to complete office upgrades and year-end paperwork. A local motorcycle operator was stopped and ticketed for popping wheelies on city streets and was advised of better locations for playing on his off-highway motorcycle.
Conservation Officer Darin Fagerman (Grand Marais) reported a very quiet week in the woods and backwaters. People that have ventured out are finding excellent walleye fishing almost anywhere they go in the remote, smaller lakes. Some anglers are reporting the best fishing in many years. Enforcement action was taken for no registration on non-resident canoes.
Conservation Officer Don Murray (Two Harbors) worked fishing, watercraft, and ATV activity over the weekend. The nice stretch of weather filled camping areas along the North Shore and fishing seemed to be good in most areas, with many anglers having some fish. Murray also handled nuisance beaver complaints and worked on a big game investigation.
Conservation Officer Sean Williams (Ely) reported anglers took advantage of the good weather and decreased insects around Ely. Anglers reported good luck with large sunfish, bass, and crappies with most anglers having some luck. Violations included allowing the illegal operation of an off-highway motorcycle by a juvenile, possession of live bait on a designated trout lake, and operating a watercraft without a personal floatation device.
Conservation Officer Anthony Bermel (Babbitt) worked the Operation Dry Water boating safety campaign over the weekend. Violations included no navigational lights after sunset and a personal flotation device violation. Overall compliance was good. Bermel arrested two subjects for warrants as a result of unpaid DNR tickets. One warrant subject was in possession of a controlled substance, resulting in a felony drug charge. Bermel observed two people bobber fishing off a dock one evening. When he turned the boat toward them to check their licenses, one subject left his pole and headed into the woods while the other took his with him and followed suit. Upon making a quick arrival and exit at the dock, the other pole was found in the woods with the minnow still attached. The subjects were soon encountered, with neither having a fishing license. Citations were issued and equipment seized. Other enforcement action was taken for possession of un-measurable northerns on a special regulations lake and aquatic invasive species violations.
Conservation Officer Marty Stage (Ely) spent time working boating and fishing enforcement, both in and outside of the BWCAW. Extra lines and no fishing license were the most common violations encountered. The small, fast mosquitos have arrived with vigor after all the rain. Invasive species enforcement was a priority and compliance was pretty good, especially among trailered boats arriving at the accesses with their plugs removed. There are still people who think the square "throwable" cushions are a legal personal flotation device. They are not. A wearable personal flotation device is a must for each person on board.
Lake Superior Marine Unit
Sergeant Keith Olson (Lake Superior Marine Unit) checked anglers and worked Operation Dry Water on the St. Louis River and bay. He checked anglers on inland lakes. He also worked ATV and off-highway vehicle enforcement in the state forest area north of Duluth. Some nuisance bear calls were fielded.
Conservation Officer Matt Miller (Lake Superior Marine Unit) checked anglers and boaters on Lake Superior. A local law enforcement student joined the officer one day for a ride along. Trout and salmon are starting to show up in Minnesota waters near Duluth, but a few weeks later than usual. Enforcement action was taken for angling and ATV violations.