The DNR is hosting a series of public hearings on the Deer Trustee report and changes proposed for hunters. But one possibility is concerning Northwoods snowmobilers.
Part of the package is a special holiday gun deer hunt south of Wisconsin 64. While this hunt wouldn't have an effect in the Northwoods as it sits now, President Ken Storms from the Sno-Eagles Snowmobile Club says there's a movement among the hunting community to extend the season also NORTH of Highway 64. He says this change, if enacted, could have a negative effect on snowmobiling around the holidays. He says 11 snowmobile clubs work together, with Vilas county, to get the trails up and running around the busy time. Storms says after inspection, trails should open around December 17, Mother Nature permitting.
"...the period between Christmas and New Year's is a critical time, assuming there's snow, for the businesses in the Northwoods. Many of them rely on snowmobile trails being opened to make a difference between profit and loss...."
He says the time the hunt would be held would impede the inspection and use of the trails. He says they set up the trails after the last gun-hunters leave the woods.
There's a Deer Trustee public hearing set for October 22 at Northland Pines High School in Eagle River beginning at 6 p.m. There's another public hearing in Rhinelander, at James Williams Middle School, October 23 at 6 p.m. Storms encouraged people with concerns about not extending the holiday deer hunt statewide to attend the meeting.