Hi. I’m Steve Robertsen, interpretation and education specialist, with the November 6th edition of the National Forest Update - information on conditions affecting travel and recreation here on the east side of the Superior National Forest. For the week of November 6th, here’s what’s going on in the Forest.
Despite the recent warm weather, fall is in fact fading into winter. With that comes a change of this program. We will be changing to an every other week broadcast instead of every week, unless weather or other circumstances call for a special edition of the Update. Keep listening though for updates on when ski and snowmobile trails open or other winter events on the Forest. You can always check our website for trail status too.
Right now though, what is going on in the Forest is the opening of the firearms deer season. Here are a few reminders for everyone headed out into the woods this weekend. You are allowed to use temporary tree stands on National Forest land, but you have to remove them after the hunt is over. Everyone has a right to hunt on Forest land, you can’t attempt to call dibs on an area by putting up a stand and leaving it up. ATVs are allowed only on the routes given on the Motor Vehicle Use Map, available at the district offices. Signs on the ground are not the final word, and may be wrong (vandals have been known to move them)…only the current map gives the correct ATV routes. Cross country ATV use is prohibited. Everyone out in the woods this time of year should be wearing orange. Being on a trail or in an area where you think there is no hunting going on are not good reasons to not wear your orange. By “Everyone” I mean dogs as well - orange dog vests work great. White is a color to avoid, you may look like a whitetail’s white tail. Finally, best of luck to all the hunters…especially those that supply our family with venison!
While driving to your secret hunting location, you may be seeing some log hauling. On the Tofte District, trucks will be hauling on the Sawbill Trail, Trappers Lake Road, the Wanless Road, and on the Timber Frear Loop (Forest Road 348) and the Four Mile Grade. On Gunflint, expect trucks on Greenwood Road, Firebox Road, Shoe Lake Road, the Old Greenwood Road, the South Brule River Road, the Lima Grade, and the Gunflint Trail.
Fire crews are still burning piles as weather permits. You may see smoke from these fires, particularly since much of the wood is now pretty wet after the last few days. Our fire shop thinks that we are about done with the fall wildfire season though, and have come through this year with no major fires.
Our Halloween bat house building events, one in Ely and one in Silver Bay, were both very successful. Ely built 66 houses, but our side of the Forest edged them out with 73 houses. Together, northern Minnesota beat the Twin Cities whose event produced an even 100 houses, but we always knew we were Superior! A special thank you to Hedstrom’s Lumber Mill for the wood, Kenny Dehnhoff and Barry Johnson, our volunteer kit makers, Tettegouche State Park, AmericInn Silver Bay, and all the witches, princesses, Darth Vaders, and zombies that built the houses. We don’t know yet if we made the Guiness Book of World Records, national numbers are still being tallied. If you built a house, please let us know if it is occupied next summer.
Our next update is in two weeks, so until then, have a great time in the woods! This has been Steve Robertsen with the National Forest Update.