News release: DNR Fish and Wildlife Almanac

September 27, 2021

Hunter walking trails provide access to public hunting in northern Minnesota
The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources maintains hunter walking trails as easy ways to travel by foot through wildlife management areas, state and federal forests, and other public hunting lands.

Hunter walking trails wind through prime habitat for ruffed grouse, American woodcock, wild turkey and white tailed deer. There are more than 600 miles of hunter walking trails meandering throughout the northern half of the state. Many of the trails are gated, allowing foot traffic only, and offer easy access to parking lots.

The DNR offers a hunter walking trail tool that provides information on trail locations by name and county. Hunters can also call area wildlife offices for information about the trails, as well as hunting and wildlife viewing opportunities and tips.

Ways people with disabilities can search for hunting opportunities
Hunters with disabilities have a variety of ways to learn more about hunting opportunities by visiting the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources website.

  • Information about hunting, fishing, camping and more is available on the Accessible Outdoors page.
  • Public land open to hunting includes wildlife management areas (WMAs). A subset of WMAs have an online Accessibility Sheet that provides greater detail on available services and facilities for people with disabilities, including photos and maps. We encourage interested hunters to call the area wildlife manager for current conditions WMAs of interest.    
  • Hunters can also go online to find information about how to get a permit to use “other power-driven mobility devices” (OPDMDs) on state-administered lands, including on WMAs. 

Fall turkey hunting opens soon
The Minnesota fall turkey hunting season offers hunters a challenge and another way to experience the outdoors in October. Fall turkey season is open from Saturday, Oct. 2, through Sunday, Oct. 31.

Hunters are allowed to take one turkey of either sex during the fall season. Fall turkey hunters may use a crossbow, firearm or archery equipment afield; however, hunters who are hunting both turkey and deer with archery equipment must observe the deer archery season restrictions on their equipment. Only hunters age 60 or older, or hunters who have a valid crossbow permit, may use crossbows during the deer archery season with an archery license.  Youth may use a crossbow on a firearms license during the youth deer season.

Fall turkey licenses are available for purchase online, by telephone by calling
888-665-4236 or in person anywhere DNR licenses are sold. More information about fall turkey hunting is available on the DNR website.

Statewide youth deer season returns Oct. 21-24
Minnesota’s youth deer season will continue statewide for its third year, starting Thursday, Oct. 21, through Sunday, Oct. 24. The season coincides with statewide teacher workshops, so many Minnesota students don’t have school during the youth season.

To participate, youth must be 10-17 years old and have a deer license. Participant numbers are not limited and there is no special permit, so parents should purchase or obtain a regular deer hunting license for the youth who will be hunting.

An adult parent, guardian, or mentor must accompany youth ages 10-13. All youth hunters and mentors must follow blaze orange/pink clothing requirements. Adults may not hunt, unless they are in an area open during the early antlerless season and have the corresponding license. Complete youth season details are available on the DNR youth deer hunting page.

Early antlerless-only deer season is Oct. 21-24
Hunters can participate in an early antlerless-only deer season from Thursday, Oct. 21, through Sunday, Oct. 24. The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has expanded the early antlerless deer season to include more deer permit areas in central and southeastern Minnesota. The season increases opportunities for hunters in areas where deer populations are above population goals or where there is an increased risk of CWD spreading.

Permit areas open during the hunt are 213, 214, 215, 221, 227, 236, 277, 341, 342, 343, 604, 605, 643, 645, 646, 647, 648, 649, 655 and 701. The DNR offers this opportunity to hunters in an effort to manage local deer herds. Hunters need an early antlerless permit to participate and the limit is five deer, which is in addition to the statewide bag limit. Deer hunting regulations are available on the DNR early antlerless hunt page.

Join this webinar on fall bass fishing
Anyone curious about fall bass fishing, including tackle and techniques for catching this fun sportfish during the fall, is invited to join tournament angler Mandy Uhrich for a DNR webinar at noon on Wednesday, Sept. 29. The webinar is part of the DNR’s Minnesota Outdoor Skills and Stewardship Series, which aims to give participants quick, relevant information on upcoming seasons and events, and skills to help enjoy these opportunities. Registration and more information are available on the DNR website.