DNR Report: March 3
Conservation Officer Anthony Bermel (Babbitt) primarily checked anglers and recreational vehicles. Anglers are reminded to use caution with the ice, especially in areas of current. Bermel was loading up his ATV at the Kawishiwi River after checking anglers on Saturday when several kids ran ahead of their dad as they were going back to the parking lot from fishing north of the bridge. The kids decided to go under the bridge and towards the south side where one young girl broke through the ice and went into the deep water. Officer Bermel grabbed a throw bag and ran toward the girl. The girl's father got there first and was able to slide up to the edge of the hole and get her out of the water and to their vehicle to warm up. A ride along was also given to a college student.
Conservation Officer Sean Williams (Ely 1) reports a slow close to the walleye and northern pike season. Angler success has been poor and cooler weather did not improve things. Snowmobile activity continues to be extremely low after the loss of most of the snow. Violations included angling without a license in possession.
Conservation Officer Marty Stage (Ely 2) worked on snowmobile and angling activity. Recent rains and then the following cold snap have made snow conditions unfavorable for travel by snowmobiles on the area lakes and trails. Some creeks and rivers now have spots that began to open up, but now have refrozen thus hiding their danger, so be careful.
Conservation Officer Darin Fagerman (Grand Marais) reports lots of angling and snowmobile activity during the week. The snowmobile trails could use some snow but they are still in fair to good condition. One group of trout anglers ended up on a snowmobile trail with a pickup truck. Lucky for them, they didn't get buried up to their axles as most in that situation do. Angling, snowmobile and Boundary Water Canoe Area Wilderness violations were encountered.
Conservation Officer Mary Manning (Grand Marais East) watched as the rain opened up creeks and rivers along snowmobile routes, making some treacherous if not impassable. Groomed sled trails were somewhat better and traffic on them was light. The officer spoke with a party concerned about his neighbor feeding deer near the shore of Lake Superior. While not illegal, feeding does concentrate deer near a major highway increasing vehicle crashes, results in deforestation of the area, and makes it easy for wolves to travel on the icy snow crust to prey on them.
Conservation Officer Keith Olson (Lake Superior Marine Unit) checked anglers on area reservoir lakes north of Duluth. Island Lake has produced some nice sized crappies in deeper depths. Snowmobilers were also worked on the lakes, area trails are in fair to poor condition due to the warmer temps. Olson investigated a dumping complaint in the parking area for Canosia Wildlife Management Area and assisted the St. Louis Sheriff's Department with a call in Rice Lake. A TIP complaint was also received on a possible abandoned fish shelter on Caribou Lake.
Conservation Officer Matt Miller (Lake Superior Marine Unit) checked shore anglers and trollers targeting salmon on the big lake. Changes in wind and weather really affect the fish with a day or two of good fishing intermixed with several days of no fish. A quick spat of snow covered trail surfaces again, but there is quite a layer of ice underneath in some spots increasing the need for extra care by snowmobiling riders. Enforcement action was taken for angling violations.