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, woodcock, wild turkey and deer. There are more than 600 miles of hunter walking trails located throughout the northern half of the state. Many of the trails are gated, allowing foot traffic only.
The Minnesota 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, or hunting and wildlife viewing opportunities and tips.
Ways people with disabilities can search for hunting opportunities
Hunters with disabilities can learn more about hunting opportunities by visiting the Minnesota DNR website. Information about accessible hunting, fishing, camping and more is available on the Accessible Outdoors webpage.
Public land open to public hunting includes wildlife management areas. A subset of WMAs have an online accessibility sheet that provides greater detail on the services and facilities for people with disabilities, including photos and maps. Interested hunters are strongly encouraged to call the area wildlife manager for an update on current conditions at WMAs.
Fall turkey hunting opens soon
The Minnesota fall turkey hunting season offers hunters a challenge and another way to experience the outdoors. Fall turkey season is open from Saturday, Sept. 30, through Sunday, Oct. 29.
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. Fall turkey licenses are available for purchase online, by telephone by calling 888-665-4236 or in person anywhere Minnesota DNR licenses are sold.
More information about fall turkey hunting is available on the Minnesota DNR website. People wanting to learn more about fall turkey hunting can register for a webinar on Wednesday, Oct. 4. Ryan Tebo, a Minnesota DNR wildlife manager, will discuss fall turkey hunting. Registration for the webinar is available on the Minnesota DNR website.
Statewide youth deer season returns Oct. 19-22
Minnesota’s youth deer season will take place statewide Thursday, Oct. 19, through Sunday, Oct. 22. 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 each youth who will be hunting. Youth may not tag antlerless deer or legal bucks taken by another individual. Crossbows are allowed for licensed youth hunters. An adult parent, guardian, or mentor must accompany youth ages 10-13.
All hunters and mentors, regardless of whether they are participating in youth deer season, must follow blaze orange/pink clothing requirements. Fabric or synthetic ground blinds on public land must have a blaze orange safety covering on top of the blind that is visible from all directions, or a patch made of blaze orange that is at least 144 square inches (12x12 inches) on each side of the blind.
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 Minnesota DNR youth deer season webpage.
Early antlerless-only deer season is Oct. 19-22
Hunters can participate in an early antlerless-only deer season from Thursday, Oct. 19, through Sunday, Oct. 22. The season increases opportunities for hunters in deer permit areas where deer populations are above population goals or where there is an increased risk of chronic wasting disease. Permit areas open during the hunt are 214, 215, 218, 219, 221, 222, 223, 225, 227, 229, 236, 277, 341, 342, 605, 643, 645, 646, 647, 648, 649, 661 and 701.
The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources offers this opportunity to hunters to manage local deer herds. The bag limit is three antlerless deer and deer taken during the early antlerless-only season do not count against the statewide bag limit. Youth may not tag antlerless deer or legal bucks taken by another individual. Fabric or synthetic ground blinds on public land must have a blaze orange safety covering on top of the blind that is visible from all directions, or a patch made of blaze orange that is at least 144 square inches (12x12 inches) on each side of the blind.
Before participating, hunters should review the specific license and permit requirements available on page 88 of the Minnesota Hunting and Trapping Regulations.
Minnesota DNR webinars focus on planning a bird hunting trip and fall turkey hunting
The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources invites people interested in wildlife and outdoor skills to check out the fall program schedule for the Minnesota Outdoor Skills and Stewardship Series.
In a webinar on Wednesday, Sept. 27, Minnesota DNR biologists and bird hunting experts will cover how to plan an upland bird hunting trip. They will answer questions and talk about helpful resources, must-have items, and everything to consider in planning a successful road trip.
In a webinar on Wednesday, Oct. 4, Ryan Tebo, one of the Minnesota DNR’s turkey research experts, will discuss fall turkey hunting, how the fall hunt differs from spring turkey hunting, and what hunters should know before trying to bag a turkey in the fall.
The Minnesota Outdoor Skills and Stewardship Series webinars are free and offered year-round, though registration is required. Visit the Outdoor Skills and Stewardship webpage of the Minnesota DNR website for the registration portal, more information about upcoming webinars and recordings of past webinars.