Northern Minnesota Adventure

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A quick northern Minnesota adventure for a bit of rest and relaxation. The trip was initially for a bit of Musky fishing and grouse hunting but the first morning we awoke to the first snowfall of the season, about 6 inches, which slowed the fishing down a bit and made the roadways a bit of a battle to trudge for birds. Fortunately, the snow-covered birch trees and abundant Chippewa National Forest wildlife made it a perfect setting for the camera instead.

Midday Friday the snow and wind had finally slowed to a tolerable level and the Bald Eagles and Whitetail deer seemed to appear out of nowhere for some great snowscape wildlife photos.....not to mention while the rest of the party hiked around the grouse trails I was able to find a ruffed grouse tolerant enough to let me get a few quick photos while it foraged through the trees; & just a couple more miles down the road, a friendly porcupine that I spent some time with as he lazily chewed the branches away.

Saturday I went back to fishing and managed to spot a couple muskies that followed to the boat, to no avail. They were moving pretty slow due to the plummeting temperatures of late October. But the fishing loons and diving osprey kept me birding even with the fishing pole in my hands.

As I wrap up this post I realize it sounded like it all went as planned in the end with the weather and the camera.....but I suppose with my haphazard writing style I can probably give you the rest of the bullet points here at the end instead of conveniently tucked above. So while it seemed that all the wildlife magically appeared Friday afternoon, that is solely because  Friday morning we managed to get the first vehicle stranded on a trail 5 miles from camp because we didn't have the (push button vehicle) key with, and shut the car off for a squirrel photo.....welcome to traveling with a photographer......O and simultaneously while we were stranded the other vehicle from camp got stuck on a grouse trail, leaving us to make the hike to push them out.....to get back to camp.....to get our keys.....to move us from the middle of the road. O, yes, and by the middle of the road, I mean we were blocking traffic and had now stopped 2 more vehicles of hunters because they could not pass to leave the dead end of the lake. All in all, the unpredictability is exactly why I love this game though.

Enjoy.

Bald Eagle in paper birch tree
Bald Eagle in paper birch trees - Minnesota
Porcupine in the tree
Minnesota Porcupine
Porcupine chewing tree bark
Porcupine Chewing Bark
Bald Eagle in flight
Bald Eagle in flight
Third eagle incoming for landing in tree
Third Eagle landing
Whitetail deer in the first snowfall
Whitetail deer in first Minnesota Snowfall
Magpie in flight - Minnesota
Magpie in flight - Minnesota
Magpie Perched
Magpie perched in Northern Minnesota
Ruffed grouse in the trees
Ruffed Grouse in the trees

Bill Van der Hagen

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