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Kurt Krueger

In the Outdoors


Kurt Krueger can be reached at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
or P.O. Box 1929, Eagle River, WI 54521.


The best-job debate has no easy answers

By Kurt Krueger

SITTING around the campstove on a brisk evening last weekend, the boys having trekked northward for some archery deer hunting, we got to talking about that age-old question of what job is best for a hunter to have.

I thought we had settled this several years ago when old Kettlehole proclaimed that driving a Schwan’s ice-cream truck was the hands-down best job on Earth, a claim refuted by no one.

Even Lard-dog and Jackpine couldn’t argue with the combination of rural miles for scouting, flexible schedule for hunting in only the best weather, and freezer truck for bringing home the venison on warm nights. 

Tuesday, October 09, 2012 3:01 PM
 
Can each of us mentor a new hunter?

By Kurt Krueger

CRITICISM from those who don’t have the experience to know better won’t keep me from being a cheerleader for Wisconsin’s mentored hunting program and other initiatives for recruiting new hunters.

I hear people talking down the program that allows 10- and 11-year-olds without a hunter’s safety certificate to go afield with a mentor. Critics don’t give any credit to parents who know their kids best or to the strict rules, which specify the youngster be “at arm’s length” from their trained guardian and that only the child be allowed to have a weapon.

Tuesday, October 02, 2012 6:27 PM
 
Celebrating America’s greatest sports

By Kurt Krueger

I WAS pulling in crappies on a rainy Saturday morning in the middle of September, the woods too wet for chasing grouse, when it dawned on me that the day was set aside to celebrate National Hunting and Fishing Day.

How appropriate it was that, without giving it much thought, the scribbler actually participated in both of these outdoor sports on that special day — also the official start of fall.

We found time, my black Lab Gracie and I, to chase some grouse in the afternoon and jumpshoot some ducks toward evening. It’s one of the few times of the year that you can pursue both sports in the same day.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012 2:53 PM
 
Frost, birds make for memorable opener
Gracie poses with five grouse she flushed and retrieved in the early morning hours of opening day last Saturday.         —Photo By The Author

By Kurt Krueger

THE?GRACE of God was shining on grouse hunters last Saturday morning as the first frost of the season blanketed the uplands, a perfect opening morning to be walking in the woods.

There’s just something about frost-covered ferns and grass in the clearings that sends a message about the changing seasons even before the calendar shows fall has arrived.

The winds were still and you could hear certain sounds from miles away — what sounded like bear hounds on the chase, a lone rifle shot, coyotes yipping and, from time to time, a shotgun blast or two.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012 6:29 PM
 
Bass fishing: It’s never too late to learn

By Kurt Krueger

IT?WAS a perfect evening for my 3-year-old grandson to catch some really big fish — a couple of little bluegills, that is — for the sport we call fishing was once again proving to be a great way to get some quality time together.

There’s nothing like time in a boat to provide a sense of unity and camaraderie that is hard to mimic elsewhere. Part of it might be that there’s no escape for an hour or two once you leave the landing.

But giving credit where it’s due, fishing is great for a sense of team adventure. For a kid, the excitement starts with hauling a small rod and tackle box to the boat, and doesn’t end until the last story is told before bedtime.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012 2:40 PM
 
Sylvania’s wilds make for a great escape

By Kurt Krueger

ONLY THE sound of a trolling motor and the screech of an eagle broke the still morning air as we slowly floated our way into the Sylvania Wilderness just north of the border.
It was?pegged as a day to escape to a wild and tranquil place with the hope of catching some fish and taking in some of the best scenery the North Woods has to offer.
The scribbler was taking his turn at some informal guiding for the guy who led me to years of great pheasant hunting in the fields of South Dakota, avid outdoorsman Jon Olsen.
Now a Florida resident and seasonal visitor to Three Lakes, Olsen is an active retiree who is always ready for a new adventure as long as it involves fishing rods, guns, hunting dogs or golf clubs.

Tuesday, September 04, 2012 3:32 PM
 
Ducks Unlimited: the legacy continues

By Kurt Krueger

NOT?MANY charitable conservation groups can say they’ve experienced double-digit growth in back-to-back years during this recession, but then, there’s something exceptional about the commitment of Ducks Unlimited (DU) and its volunteers to preserving wetland habitat.
DU fundraising efforts grew by well over 10% in each of the past two years, a testament to the organization’s reputation for frugality, employing the best science and producing results on the ground.
Much has changed since the drought-plagued Dust Bowl threatened waterfowl populations in 1937, but DU has remained up to the challenges — one of the few groups that puts more than 80% of its revenues directly into habitat projects.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012 2:30 PM
 
Time to support the grouse habitat experts
By Kurt Krueger

GROUSE and the young forest habitat this elusive game bird needs to survive will get a boost next week as the organization that does so much for bird hunters holds its sixth annual Sportsmen’s Banquet at Whitetail Inn in St. Germain.
The continued resurgence of the Ruffed Grouse Society (RGS) in Wisconsin can be seen on several fronts these days and, locally, it’s the Chain O’ Lakes Chapter that keeps the effort moving forward.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012 3:26 PM
 
The glory days of autumn are coming fast
Gracie’s favorite water exercise is plowing through a foot or two of water on a sandy beach, even if only to retrieve a stick. She’s a speed demon with only one gear. The anticipation is high for her third season in the grouse woods. After two incredible years, it’s hard to imagine she can get any better.   —Photo By The Author

By Kurt Krueger

AUGUST visitors probably deserved some warmer weather than what they got last week, but the cooler temperatures were a blessing to some.
There are hunters living among us, you see, who cherish those first 40-degree nights of late summer as a sign of grand things to come.
It was hard to comprehend that suddenly, after months of hot, dry weather, there was good reason to put on a long-sleeved shirt or

Tuesday, August 14, 2012 5:49 PM
 
Gouging on wolf fees should be overturned
There is no reason why the DNR?needs another $300,000 in annual revenue from the new wolf hunt, which starts this fall.    —Contributed Photo

By Kurt Krueger

EVERYTHING about the state’s new wolf hunt and enhanced population control plan makes sense, except the part about gouging Wisconsin hunters and trappers with outrageous fees for licenses and permit applications.
If you think $24 is too much to pay for a deer license or $12 is too much for an extra antlerless deer tag, what about $100 for a wolf license or $10 every year just to make application for a wolf tag?

Tuesday, August 07, 2012 6:29 PM
 
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