By EMMA KUKUK
Michigan Department of Natural Resources
Michigan’s outdoors should be accessible for all people to enjoy. All too often, that isn’t the case. Whether it’s a lack of understanding or inaccessible facilities, outdoor spaces aren’t always welcoming to people with disabilities.
That’s starting to change, thanks in part to groups like the Bays de Noc Gobblers, a chapter of the National Wild Turkey Federation. For years, the Upper Peninsula-based chapter has utilized the federation’s Wheelin’ Sportsmen outreach program, which focuses on making the outdoors more accessible for hunters.
As a result, the Gobblers have become a frontrunner in providing accessible hunting. Specifically, the group developed mobile trailers designed not only to accommodate wheelchair users, but also to ensure a safe, fun hunting experience for people of all mobility levels. These unique trailers make it easier for hunters with disabilities to enjoy the outdoors without barriers.
Michigan anglers Bruce DeShano and Kim Stricker are two of 10 persons inducted into the 2020 class of the National Fresh Water Fishing Hall of Fame.
DeShano owns OffShore Tackle, a trolling board and trolling-orientated company. He got his start many years ago trolling for salmon and trout and later built products that catered to the Great Lakes trolling community that also become popular among walleye anglers. DeShano is an accomplished angler as well and has won many tournaments on the Great Lakes.
By Louie Stout
The Eagle Lake situation has taken another turn that should be of concern to anglers and non-anglers alike awaiting construction of the new boat ramp.
While the proposed public access remains tangled in the DNR/DEQ courts, a developer has petitioned the state for a permit to install a marina-like operation in the southeast corner of Eagle Lake. It would be located on both sides of the existing ramp, and including a re-do of the existing ramp for private use.
Four Lakes Development, LLC hopes to obtain permits and permission to build 12 homes on the old dock property and has petitioned the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy (EGLE) to place six, 40-foot docks, six feet wide, on the shoreline north and south of the existing ramp. The docks would be used by residents in the proposed development.