Welcome to Northwest Iowa Outdoors

  • Life can be so fleeting
  • Walleye Opener around corner; good walleye population expected
  • Muskie Study to Look at Yearling Muskie Survival on Big Spirit Lake
  • Frank Wesson 1870 Pocket Rifle
  • Spirit Lake Hatchery now open “for business”
  • Giving back to others
  • Gotta love this time of year
  • Kabele’s Trading Post: a One-Stop Destination
  • Iowa DNR looking for hunter feedback
  • Angell, Sansgaald Take 4th annual Yellow Bass Bonanza
  • Hillview Snow Scamper draws 43 runners
  • Capturing the Beauty of Nature Through a Lense
  • In Search of Redfish
  • A look at tungsten
  • Big Buck Contest Feb. 6th!
  • IGLFC to Host Fishing Seminar Thursday, February 11
  • Attracting a Shy Feathered Visitor: the Indigo Bunting

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Recent NWIO Articles

  • Life can be so fleeting
    Life can be so fleeting

    By Steve Weisman Wow, 12 years can pass by so quickly. Back in 2004, I had the privilege of interviewing the famous Americana and wildlife artist, Terry Redlin. My wife and I actually went to Watertown and spent two hours visiting with Terry, his wife, son and Julie Ranum, the director of the Redlin Art Museum. Having grown up in South Dakota, I guess you could say we had a common bond: love for the beauty of the great outdoors. However, he had the ability to capture those images and bring them to life on canvas. My wife and I Read more →

  • Walleye Opener around corner; good walleye population expected
    Walleye Opener around corner; good walleye population expected

    By Steve Weisman It’s almost show time! The time is drawing nearer and nearer. The Annual Great Walleye Weekend is just around the corner. This year will be the 34th Annual Great Walleye Weekend, May 7 and 8. This two-day fishing tournament brings thousands of anglers to the Iowa Great Lakes to see if they can catch one of the specially tagged walleye. This year’s event includes an increase in the number of tagged walleyes to 10 versus the normal 6-tagged walleyes. Plus, the grand prize for this year is $34,000 to commemorate the 34th anniversary of the tournament. In Read more →

  • Muskie Study to Look at Yearling Muskie Survival on Big Spirit Lake
    Muskie Study to Look at Yearling Muskie Survival on Big Spirit Lake

    By Steve Weisman The local chapter of Upper Great Plains Muskie Inc. Chapter 29 (Iowa Great Lakes), along with a donation from the national chapter’s Hugh Becker Foundation and the Heartland Muskies Inc. chapter from Clear Lake, have donated a combined total of nearly $15,500 to help the Iowa Department of Natural Resources and Iowa State University fund a study of yearling muskie survival on Big Spirit Lake. Once muskies hatch they are held in the hatchery the first summer and then sent to the Lake Rathbun Hatchery in September and held in cement lined ponds until the following spring, Read more →

  • Frank Wesson 1870 Pocket Rifle
    Frank Wesson 1870 Pocket Rifle

    By: John Hackett The Wesson name is no stranger to historic firearms. Most laymen know of Daniel Wesson of Smith & Wesson fame, but few know of his younger brother Frank Wesson. But most serious collectors of vintage firearms do know of Frank Wesson’s guns, and that an early partnership forged by him still exists in today’s gun manufacturing landscape. Frank Wesson established his gun factory in 1854 in Worcester MA. In 1871 Wesson entered into a partnership with his nephew Gilbert Harrington under the name Wesson & Harrington. The partnership dissolved in 1874, and Wesson went back into his Read more →

  • Spirit Lake Hatchery now open “for business”
    Spirit Lake Hatchery now open “for business”

    By Steve Weisman Slowly and steadily, the netting crews have been making progress in their walleye seining efforts. According to Kim Hawkins, Natural Resources Biologist and the Spirit Lake Hatchery Manager, two sample crews went out on East Okoboji Sunday, April 3 and collected 114 walleyes (male and female combined). That number increased to 176 on the next night. On Tuesday, a total of seven crews netted on both East Okoboji and Big Spirit with 131 walleyes brought to the hatchery from East Okoboji and 282 from Big Spirit. Things went down dramatically on East Okoboji after that, but last Read more →

  • Giving back to others
    Giving back to others

    By Steve Weisman Easter week is such a powerful week bringing together all elements of human life: birth, life’s struggles and death, culminating with the victory over death through the Resurrection. It has always been an inspirational week for our family. This past week was even more impactful for our entire family as my wife’s 91-year-old father, Dr. Alvin Scheffel passed away. It was so hard for the entire family as we watched him slowly slipping away before our eyes. Yet, it was also uplifting for us because we knew he was going to a far, far better place. His Read more →

  • Gotta love this time of year
    Gotta love this time of year

    By Steve Weisman This is one of those times of the year that I really get antsy…ice is still on (barely) the Iowa Great Lakes but slowly fading away, waterfowl are pushing the snowline, open water walleye is only a day trip away and we’re at the end of the outdoor shows! The colder temperatures the first week of March actually firmed up the shorelines and gave us at least another weak of ice fishing. This past weekend anglers were all over the lakes – West Okoboji, East Okoboji and Big Spirit – kind of like a last fling! I Read more →

  • Kabele’s Trading Post: a One-Stop Destination
    Kabele’s Trading Post: a One-Stop Destination

    By Steve Weisman Kabele’s Trading Post has been a popular baitshop in Spirit Lake since Ed and Alice Kabele opened it in 1968. In 2004, Thane Johnson purchased the baitshop from Ed and Alice and over the past 11 years has built and grown the business based on the foundation that had been established. Thane says he and his wife Tanya still believe that Kabele’s “is a mom and pop baitshop, but we are working very hard to make Kabele’s a must stop destination for families coming to the Iowa Great Lakes. We can really be their one-stop destination. The Read more →

  • Iowa DNR looking for hunter feedback
    Iowa DNR looking for hunter feedback

    Hello Iowa Hunters, The DNR invites you to provide your feedback about Iowa’s hunting and trapping regulations at upcoming public listening sessions.The sessions will take place February 24, 2016 from 6-9 p.m. at 17 locations across the state. At each meeting, hunters can share what went well last fall, what didn’t, and changes they would like to see. These discussions, along with the data collected by the DNR Wildlife Bureau on harvest and population numbers, will be used to develop recommendations for any hunting regulation changes this fall. Meetings will be held in Boone, Calmar, Clinton, Council Bluffs, Creston, Iowa Read more →

  • Angell, Sansgaald Take 4th annual Yellow Bass Bonanza
    Angell, Sansgaald Take 4th annual Yellow Bass Bonanza

    By Steve Weisman The fourth annual Yellow Bass Bonanza (YBB) presented by Mason City Power Sports was once again a huge success according to tournament directors Kevan Paul and Chris Scholl. Held at Clear Lake on Sunday, February 14, the team of Chad Angell from Colo and Josh Sansgaald from Collins led the way with a 50-fish limit weight of 19.91 pounds. For their efforts, they took home two Vexilar FLX 28 flashers and a Clam prize package totaling over $1500 retail value. Second place and two Clam Kenai Pro shelters valued at over $700 went to the team of Read more →


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