We're coming around on the time of year when everything emerges from its winter slumber, and even those animals that haven't retreated for the winter begin to show signs of excitement for spring. We love seeing the wild creatures as much as you do, so we're laying out the best places for you to observe animals in their natural habitat. Sure there will be a little luck involved, but regardless of how many animals you see, you'll still get to experience the beauty of the area.
Here on the Whitefish Chain of Minnesota we're lucky to have a wide variety of animals call the area home. Our backyard is their backyard, and their presence is what helps make the area so magical.
One great spot to see wildlife is at Uppgaard Wildlife Managment Area, an area that was gifted to the public by resident Bob Uppgaard. When it was first turned into a WMA, the area was landscaped specifically to allow wildlife to thrive. The right plants were planted or encouraged to grow to provide both food and habitat for all kinds of wild animals. Then, benches, gazebos and blinds were strategically placed to allow visitors to watch that wildlife. The trails wind around a couple of small ponds where you have a chance at seeing beavers, and the surrounding forest is filled with deer and bird life. Keep your eyes peeled.
It's totally free to visit Uppgaard WMA and you'll find maps of the area at the entrance.
Over at the Veterans Memorial Walking Trail, there's lots of land to check out. On one route you can follow a boardwalk over a wetland to an island. In the summer the wetland flourishes with dragonflies, frogs, turtles and bird life, while the island can be home to wild blueberries. This spring, watch for turtles emerging from hibernation and keep an eye out for migratory waterfowl.
You might otherwise choose to take the north loop of the walking trail, which will lead to a bridge over Hay Creek. The paths at this site are nice and wide and travel through a variety of landscapes. It's totally free to visit the Veteran's Memorial Walking Trails.
If you want to make the most of the snow while you look for wildlife, head over to the Crosslake Community Center. For a small fee you can rent a set of snowshoes, or bring your own cross-country skis- there's trails for either mode of transportation! You can also simply hike, if you prefer. The area is free to visit. Pick up a map of the trails in the community center or view it online. Plenty of deer live in this area and visitors are often counting to see who can spot the most.
These are just a few of the places you can check out to get out in the woods in hopes of seeing some wildlife. The Whitefish Chain Area still has its wild side; simply keep your eyes peeled as you drive the area and you have a chance of seeing all kinds of wild animals. With our abundant water and woods, who knows what you might see?