If a road trip to watch wildlife, or perhaps wet a line from shore, is in your future, you might want to consider a drive to the Roseau River Wildlife Management Area.
Beginning July 14 and continue through July 22, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources will open the WMA’s 29-mile wildlife drive to highway-licensed vehicles. After July 22, the route will be open weekends through Aug. 19.
The DNR began opening the wildlife drive for temporary vehicle access a few years ago. The road wasn’t open last summer because of the month-long state government shutdown.
The entrance to the wildlife drive is located 1½ miles south of WMA headquarters on County Road 3. The gravel road goes through wetland, wetland, woodland, brushland and farmland habitats and cuts through the northern portion of the “Juneberry” wildfire that burned more than 30,000 acres last October.
According to the DNR, nearly 150 bird species breed within the Roseau River WMA, including yellow rails, horned grebes and Western grebes. The drive also offers the potential for encountering trumpeter swans, loons, white pelicans, sandhill cranes, great blue herons, eagles, a variety of ducks and other water birds, sedge wrens, yellow warblers, Nelson’s sharp-tailed sparrows, black bears, deer, beaver, otter, muskrat, red fox, gray wolf and the occasional moose, the DNR said.
The managed water pools within the WMA offer northern pike fishing, and anglers typically fish from shore along the dike roads or along the water control structures.
In a news release, the DNR says motorists should be careful on the narrow road, and the speed limit is 20 mph. The DNR may close the drive in case of inclement weather.
For more information on the WMA, call (218) 463-1130 or click here: