Great Outdoors

Birkie Preparations Underway

Full installation of the infamous American Birkebeiner International Bridge will begin next week.

DULUTH, Minn.- Northern Wisconsin is preparing for the American Birkebeiner. Racers are anxious for trail condition updates and nearly 25 hundred volunteers are working to make it happen. “I think it’s beyond anybody’s wildest dreams, certainly we know the impact for Hayward, we know the impact for Cable,” executive director Ben Popp said. “We also know what it means to…

Great Outdoors: Snowshoeing at Glensheen Mansion

DULUTH, Minn. – Moonlight Snowshoes at Glensheen was hugely popular last year, and it is back this year. Visitors to the historic estate tour the grounds after dark and experience the Glensheen and Congdon story. There is a bonfire afterwards with s’mores afterword. The snowshoe hikes at Glensheen are happening every Wednesday in January.  It’s free.  You just need to…

Great Outdoors: Bentleyville Tour of Lights 2017 Finale

Attraction Saw Bigger Crowds Than 2016

Exciting news for Bentleyville Tour of Lights 2017, attendance was way up compared to last year. Nathan Bentley tells us that in 2016, 292,000 people visited Bentleyville in Duluth’s Bayfront Park. In 2017, that number is about 330,000 people. Bentley says it takes a lot of people to make the holiday attraction come together each year, and they are now…

Great Outdoors: Visit Cook County, Lutsen Mountains

Visit Cook County Executive Director Linda Jurek Explains Why Now is Such a Vital Time to Venture North

COOK COUNTY, Minn. – Staff at Lutsen Mountains are busy preparing for a non-stop holiday season of fun right now. From maintenance on the mountains, to answering phones at Caribou Highlands Lodge and Resort, it’s all hands on deck before thousands ring in the new year. Officials with Caribou Highlands say Christmas and New Year’s is a popular time for…

Great Outdoors: Dog Parks

A New Dog Park Opened Tuesday in Gary-New Duluth

DULUTH, Minn. – There’s a new dog park at the Gary-New Duluth Community Center. There are now four dog parks across Duluth. “Not everybody wants to walk five miles, not everybody wants to walk around the block, but they love coming to the dog park and hanging out and meeting other people and then watching the dogs’ interaction, it’s a…

Great Outdoors: Wisconsin Firearm Deer Season Opening Saturday

WISCONSIN – Rifle deer hunting season opens this Saturday and hunters across the state are gearing up. “I love being outdoors,” said Dale Kuhlman of Custom Archery and Outdoors in Superior. “I love being in the woods. Scenery, sounds, smells, and when you see animals, it’s just that much more of a bonus.” Deer season is huge in Wisconsin. “Everybody…

Wisconsin Adopts New Bill Eliminating Hunting Age Restriction

The state's gun deer season runs until Nov. 26.

SUPERIOR, Wis. – It doesn’t matter if you’re six or 60. If you live in Wisconsin, you can hunt in Wisconsin without an age restriction. On Saturday, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker signed a bill that eliminates the minimum age requirement. Hunters previously had to be at least 10-years-old to hunt with an adult. Parents will now determine at what age…

Snow Is Flying At Mont du Lac Ski Resort

This Weeks Great Outdoors

  Just last year on this date, temperatures were soaring 20 to 30 degrees above normal. For the ski hills making snow was weeks away. In this week’s great outdoors we head to Mont du Lac Ski Resort in superior where the snow is already flying. “The last two years, everybody had a tough time getting open before Christmas,” says…

Great Outdoors: North Country Trail

The Longest Trail In The Nation Runs Right Through The Northland

NORTH COUNTRY TRAIL, Minn. & Wisc. — The North Country Trail is the longest trail in the Nation! It was created back in 1980 and it passes through 12 National Forests. Did you know that this historic trail winds right through our backyard, Northland? 4,600 miles it spans from Vermont to North Dakota, while passing through both Minnesota and Wisconsin….

City Snow Plow Training Underway

The city is prepping workers for the winter months during snow plow training.

DULUTH, Minn.- On Tuesday city workers in Duluth prepared for the upcoming snow during a training session at Spirit Mountain. The course gives workers an opportunity to operate the machinery, before work will be in full swing during winter in the Northland.  City employees are practicing maneuvering graters and plows for snow removal.  “What we do here is we get them…

Great Outdoors: Bird Watching at Hawk Ridge

Research Done at Hawk Ridge Bird Observatory Is Important to Understanding the Ecosystem

DULUTH, Minn. – Birds are migrating to their winter homes in Central and South America, and Hawk Ridge Bird Observatory in Duluth is a fantastic place to watch them fly overhead. In this weeks’s Great Outdoors, we take you to Hawk Ridge where a lot of work is being done to study migratory birds. “Birds are everywhere and so I…

Great Outdoors – DWP Trail Undergoing Repairs

Old Railroad Corridor Isn't Officially Open for Public Use

DULUTH, Minn. – The DWP trail provides beautiful views along West Duluth’s hillside, but the old railroad bed isn’t officially open for public use. The DWP, a city owned abandoned railroad corridor, runs ten miles along Duluth’s hillside. “This trail is beautiful and I say that and, if you put this on the news, people are going to show up,…

Great Outdoors – Medical Students Hike to Destress

Getting Outside for a Walk Can Bring Much Needed Relaxation

DULUTH, Minn. – Getting outside for a walk can be a great way to relieve stress after a long day. We take a look at how some medical students are using nature to get some much needed relaxation. “Something I do for destressing is just walking outside and enjoying nature,” says Christopher Wiger, a first year medical student at UMD….

Great Outdoors: Lakeside Community Walk/Run

Group Meets Every Wednesday at 4:00 p.m.

DULUTH, Minn. – Walking or running along Duluth’s lakewalk can be a great way to get outside, but it can sometimes be lonely going by yourself. In this week’s Great Outdoors, we tell you about a group who walks and runs as a community. “Sometimes the biggest challenge of getting out and being active is just having a time and…

Great Outdoors: 4-H Fishing

DULUTH, Minn. – Throughout the year, 4-H offers a variety of community learning programs designed to help kids explore something new. In this week’s Great Outdoors, FOX 21’s Matt Van Winkle takes us to the St. Louis River for the club’s first hooked-on-fishing event. Categories: Great Outdoors, News, News – Latest News

Digging Deeper with Northern Harvest CSA Farm

With CSA Farms Growing in Popularity in Recent Years, Local Crops are Selling Out for the Season

WRENSHALL, Minn. – The Northland is receiving ample amounts of rain this season, causing some local farmers to wish for higher ground. CSA farming is much more than freshly picked produce on your table. “You’re never going to master nature; you’re never going to master Mother Nature,” said Farmer Rick Dalen, Northern Harvest Farm. It’s almost time for books and…

Inside the Boundary Waters

Meteorologist Brittney Merlot Takes Us Deep Into The Vast Wilderness To Prepare For All Types Of Weather.

The vast wilderness of the Boundary Waters  is in our backyard with thousands of visitors a year. It has the highest point in Minnesota and some of the oldest rock on Earth. But what about the weather when you head into the wilderness? How can you prepare? Our very own Meteorologist Brittney Merlot recently spent a lot of time in…

Great Outdoors: Lake Superior Sea Kayaking

Guided Trips All Around the Lake Offer Many Chances to Give Sea Kayaking a Try

BAYFIELD, Wis. – What better way to get outside than paddling in a boat just inches above the world’s biggest freshwater lake? In this week’s Great Outdoors, we take you sea kayaking on Lake Superior. “Kayaking is just a really neat adventure with getting to actually use your own body to propel yourself across the water,” says sea kayaker Molly…

Great Outdoors: Grilling on the 4th of July

Many local businesses spent lots of time preparing for the big rush of the holiday

From burgers and brats to pork and chicken kabobs,  grills across the country were filled with a variety of food for the 4th of July. FOX 21’s Matt Van Winkle shows us how some local businesses prepared for the holiday. Categories: Business, Great Outdoors, News

Island Lake Gearing Up For Big Holiday Weekend

This Weeks Great Outdoors

ISLAND LAKE, Minn. – In this week’s Great Outdoors we head to Island Lake where they’re gearing up for a busy 4th of July weekend. Summer is officially here so a few things come to mind like cabins, lakes, your grill, family and friends and of course your favorite beverages. Island Lake sits just 20 miles north of Duluth. With…

Great Outdoors: Minnesota Wildfire Academy

The week-long course is designed to give future firefighters an introduction to the basic practices of combating wildfire situations

GRAND RAPIDS, Minn. – Last week more than 700 students from all across the country came together for the 17th annual Wildfire Academy in Grand Rapids. For Dan Kibat, the academy at Itasca Community College has been about taking in as much information as he can before he starts his first job with the Conservation Corps in Grand Rapids. “Being…

Great Outdoors: Roger Peterson Little League Tournament

26 teams from across the region came together in Duluth to take part in the annual West Duluth tournament

DULUTH, Minn. – Hundreds of youth baseball players from across the Northland were in Duluth this past weekend for Western Duluth Little League’s annual Roger Peterson Baseball Tournament. In tonight’s Great Outdoors, Fox 21’s Matt Van Winkle shows us to the sights and sounds from the diamonds. Categories: Community, Great Outdoors, News, News – Latest News

Great Outdoors: Duluth Women Mountain Bike 101

The class was created to help get more women interested in the growing sport

DULUTH, Minn. – As the popularity of mountain biking continues to grow in Duluth, more and more women are starting to get involved with the sport. At Spirit Mountain, a full class is on hand for a “Ladies Only” Mountain Bike 101 class. “We’re just going to go over balance on your bike, braking, shifting a little bit,” said Dee…

Great Outdoors: Bike Rodeo

Kids Learned Bike Safety While Having a Lot of Fun

PROCTOR, Minn. – Biking can be one of the most fun ways to enjoy summer in the Northland for kids and for adults. In this week’s Great Outdoors, we take you to Proctor for their first ever Bike Rodeo. “It’s fun for doing stunts and getting the air in your face and have fresh air,” said Isaac Bogatzki, who was…

Great Outdoors: Minnesota Fishing Opener

Northland Youth Learns The Lure of The Lake

ISLAND LAKE, Minn- It’s the pursuit of the catch, that has so many of Minnesota’s anxious anglers up well before dawn and hitting the water at first light. Youth Angler, Keegan Charnley says, “We had to wake up pretty early to get here, but, well we’ve had a few bites.” For Keegan Charnley and is father Richie, they look forward…

Great Outdoors: Mosquito Season is Coming

Get Rid of Standing Water, and Get the Bug Spray Ready

DULUTH, Minn.- The recent cold weather is delaying the hatching of mosquito eggs, but that doesn’t mean they’re not coming. And it doesn’t even mean there will be fewer mosquitoes. “Every time there is a freeze or a frost, it’s going to knock down most of the mosquitoes that are out there,” said Mark Fenlason, Owner of Mosquito Squad. In fact, the…

Great Outdoors: Smelt Fry

Smelt Are Running and Northlanders are Getting Their Seasonal Fix

DULUTH, Minn. – It’s that time of year. Smelt are running through the waters of the Northland. In this week’s Great Outdoors, we explore the smelting tradition and how much people love to eat these small, silver fish. “I love smelt and haven’t had any for a long time.” The smelt are running and Northlanders are casting their nets to…

Great Outdoors: Gearing Up For Camping Season

Great Outdoors: Local Experts Give Camping Tips

Although it’s been rainy and chilly to start the week, Spring is here and many are gearing up for the camping season. Local outdoor experts spoke with FOX 21 to give some tips on having a successful trip. “As soon as the weather begins to warm up and the days get longer you start thinking about camping,” said Greg Pinther,…

Great Outdoors: UMD’s Clean Snowmobile Team Takes 3rd in National Competition

A busted engine was no problem for this experienced group of engineering students

DULUTH, Minn. – Living in the Northland, most people have seen and heard snowmobiles buzzing through the snow during the winter months. Over at UMD, a group of students has been working hard, designing a new, cleaner sled and they’re already seeing the results pay off. “When we first started we were just barely trying to get something to work,”…

Great Outdoors – St. Louis River Offers Many Opportunities to Get Outside

Summit at UW-Superior Addressed How Northlanders Can Improve and Protect River Corridor

SUPERIOR, Wis. – The St. Louis River Summit is happening at UW-Superior. We’ll take a look at how important the St. Louis River is to our region and how Northlanders use it for all kinds of outdoor recreation. “Once I was out kayaking in the St. Louis River on opening day of fishing.” says Deanna Erickson, the Education Coordinator for…

Business is Booming at Local Bait Shops

A Mid-Winter Warmup Has Not Impacted Ice Fishing, According to Local Businesses

DULUTH, Minn. – We’re learning the recent mid-winter warm-up has not impacted business at local bait shops in the Northland. Store owners at Chalstrom’s Bait and Tackle, and Fisherman’s Corner tell FOX 21 it’s been the best year for ice fishing business in the past five years. It’s a passion for many, only Mother Nature can deny. “Once you’re into…

2017 American Birkebeiner Cancelled

Birkie Fever Continues Despite the Cancellation

For only the second time in 44 years all ski races set for this weekend’s Annual American Birkebeiner have been cancelled. The only other time this happened was in 2000. Organizers for North America’s largest cross country ski race held out hope for this weekend as a potential snow storm was on the horizon. Last minute efforts started early as…

Great Outdoors: Ice Climbing

Ice Climbing With UMD Ice Climbing Instructors

DULUTH, Minn. – Ice climbing in the Northland is a sport that’s always popular during the winter. In this week’s edition of FOX 21’s Great Outdoors, we tag along with UMD ice climbing instructors to a relatively unknown ice climbing spot in Chester Park. For UMD ice climbing instructor Kevin Taralseth having ice to climb just minutes away from campus is a…

Runners, Bikers, and Skiers Travel 135 Miles in the Snow

It's an Extreme Race from International Falls to Tower

DULUTH, Minn.- Joe Stiller has been competing in the Arrowhead Ultra for 4 years, and says the 135 mile race is one of his favorites. “This has a real tight family community, more than any other race that I do,” says Stiller. The race starts in International Falls Minnesota, and Ends in Tower. Competitors pack gear like sleeping bags, extra…