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Deer hunting season in Minnesota is on!

A family of deers come out of the wilderness to eat rose bushes in a Southern California garden.

One of the most fun things to do in Minnesota is to take part in the deer hunting season. Hunters in Minnesota have the chance to bag other animals too, such as wolves, bobcats, and small game, but the big draw has always been the deer.

Residents and non-residents alike are permitted to purchase hunting licenses. The cost of a license varies depending on the season and the animal in question. Anyone living in Minnesota can purchase their pass from the Department of Natural Resources; either through an agent, through their office in St. Paul (which is among the best places to visit in Minnesota, by the way), online, or over the phone. Make sure you get yours before heading out.

Rules, Regulations, and Tips for Hunters

  • Stay Safe
    The Department of Natural Resources (DNR) would like to remind hunters that they should follow the three principles of firearm safety when hunting;

    • Treat every firearm as if it was loaded with solid trigger discipline
    • Stay in control of the muzzle of the firearm
    • Verify your target, including what is behind – and around – it

    Another tip on staying safe is to beware of tree-stand accidents. They are the leading cause of hunter injury. Take a safety harness with you, and be sure to unload any guns before using a stand. It’s the easiest and simplest way to avoid any potential accidents.

  • Blaze Pink and Blaze Pink
    Hunters and trappers participating in open firearms deer season are required to display either blaze orange or blaze pink on the visible part of their cap and on the waist of their clothing, with the exception of gloves and sleeves.
  • Watch out for the Wet
    Hunters can help themselves by preparing to deal with wet conditions when hunting in Minnesota. The fall was particularly wet this past year, to the point that low areas have seen standing water. It may be difficult to access previously accessible spots because of the weather. The lower the spot, the more likely it is to be inaccessible. Plan ahead for a safe and successful hunt.

What to Put in a Deer Hunting Day Pack

It never hurts to be prepared. Hunters should take a day pack with them that includes everything they might need for the day, including;

  • A sharp knife
  • A thin rope to haul deer and a heavier rope to drag deer out
  • Headlamp and fresh batteries
  • Compass and GPS (and the knowledge to use them!)
  • Safety harness
  • Hunting license
  • Toilet paper
  • Rubber gloves to field dress deer
  • A small survival kit with garbage bags, waterproof matches, whistle, and energy bar (at the very least)
  • Deer haul line and harness
  • Foldable saw to clear brush
  • Pelvic saw to field dress deer
  • Plastic tape to mark and track deer in harsh conditions
  • Cough drops
  • Water bottle
  • Grunt call
  • A cellphone – charged but turned off – for emergencies

The DNR Can Answer Your Questions

If you have any more questions about deer season or hunting in general, then the DNR has you covered. Their website is packed full of information, including an FAQ section. They can also be contacted via telephone during the week on 651-296-6157. If you spot any poaching or hunting violations, then you should contact Turn in Poachers on 800-652-9093. There’s a big difference between hunting and poaching. Remember, not every animal is up for grabs. Thanks to declining numbers, moose are off-limits and shouldn’t be hunted, for example.

The rules and regulations for hunting seasons can vary between seasons. Be sure to get the appropriate information and obtain your license well ahead of time. Hunting season is one of the biggest activities in Minnesota, so you want to make sure that you do it right and don’t break any laws in the process!

Final Thoughts

Hunting season is always a big deal in Minnesota. Anyone living in Minnesota can tell you that. If you’re in town for a hunt, though, why not check out what else Minnesota has to offer? The Best restaurants in Minnesota serve up some of the finest food in the country, and activities to do in Minnesota can be found everywhere.