outdoors column

By mid to late winter more and more bluegills and crappies show up in deeper water and can make for some easy pickins. They’re easy because they show up on good electronics and can usually be caught, as long you’ve got “right stuff.”

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As we head into the early ice period here in central Minnesota, we are faced with some uncertainty such as less than ideal ice conditions and unfortunately a lot of snow to boot. Lots of snow with iffy ice conditions require anglers to pay special attention to ice safety.

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With the last of the deer hunting zones coming to a close it might be time to get back in the woods and chase a few ruffed grouse around. Even though the small game season extends through the end of the year it’s the time between the end of the deer season and the arrival of fresh snow that can be some of the best.

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Now that the firearms season is well under way here in central Minnesota, we bow hunters are now facing the biggest change during the entire bow season…..the gun season. This radical change in the environment of the whitetail deer forces them to change their everyday lifestyle, adapt to different travel areas and re-arrange their feeding schedules.

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Duck hunters in general are an odd lot. Where else can you find a comparison to someone who enjoys sitting outside in a swamp when the temperature is hovering below freezing or the sleet and snow are blowing sideways at hurricane force speeds.

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Every fall in Minnesota is seems the duck situation changes according to weather conditions, rain amounts and air temperatures. Heading into the early season here in central Minnesota, Mother Nature has thrown us some curves and the modern waterfowler needs to adapt accordingly. Here are some insights into our early season and some of my budding strategies.

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