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Minnesota Deer Hunters Association gifts 160 acres to Park Rapids DNR

Outdoor recreationists can now benefit from four, 40-acre parcels in the Badoura State Forest that border Mucky Creek, a designated trout stream, in Hubbard County.

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From left, Lee Olson, Melvin Hemerick and Russ Johnsrud, local MDHA chapter members; Mike Lichter, DNR Park Rapids area forester; and Tom Stursa, retired DNR Park Rapids area wildlife technician.

Outdoor recreationists can now benefit from four, 40-acre parcels in the Badoura State Forest that border Mucky Creek, a designated trout stream, in Hubbard County.

“These parcels were the missing pieces that now connect public access to several square miles of public lands for hunting, fishing and wildlife viewing as well as additional miles of forest roads and snowmobile trails,” said Mike Lichter, DNR Park Rapids area forester.

The land was purchased by the Minnesota Deer Hunters Association (MDHA) from the Potlatch Corporation in 2018 and gifted to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources in 2019. It is adjacent to other state and county forest lands and offers an array of benefits to the public, including outdoor recreation, water quality protection, wildlife habitat management and timber production.

“We are pleased that through our partnership with MDHA, Hubbard County and other partners we were able to permanently secure access to these additional lands for local and visiting users alike,” Lichter said.

Tom Stursa, retired Park Rapids DNR wildlife technician and local committee member of MDHA and National Wildlife Turkey Federation (NWTF), was instrumental in securing and coordinating funding for these parcels.

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“His knowledge of the Hubbard County land base, including access and water quality issues, played a critical role in identifying these valuable parcels,” said Lichter.

Funding for the $233,000 acquisition by MDHA was provided by a Conservation Partners Legacy grant through the Lessard-Sams Outdoor Heritage Council as well as $25,000 in matching grant funds from Enbridge. Local chapters of the NWTF and MDHA supported the acquisition.

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