CPR

The team behind Minnesota Steelheader

My Steelheading life started at the age 17 with my first steelhead caught on what is still one of my most coveted fishing holes.  Since that day of addiction I have worked the retail side of the fishing industry, served on the Board of Directors for the Lake Superior Steelhead Association, fishing guide, and all around North Shore fishing enthusiast.

Bryan - Minnesota Steelheader - Director
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Birdog - Minnesota Steelheader - Director

Born and raised in NE Minnesota, trout fishing on the North Shore has been one of Birdogs passions since his early childhood when his Dad would take him to get "trout for breakfast". He has been a fly fisherman since the mid 80's, and a dedicated Steelheader a short while after. Though he enjoys using a variety of techniques to catch fish, his favorite technique is swinging flies for steelies, whether with single handed or Spey rods.  He has also assisted as a special Guest with DB on a Steelhead episode of Kent Hrbek Outdoors

Birdog is currently serving as an Instructor Pilot and the Operations Support Flight Commander, 133rd Airlift Wing, MNANG. He has an awesome wife and 2 great kids. Other interests include; Grouse hunting, canoeing, model railroading, and playing hockey.

Todd - Minnesota Steelheader - Treasurer | Director

I owe my fishing heritage to my grandfather. My earliest memories are of salmon eggs under bobbers for stocked rainbows, but Gramps quickly moved me to more interesting environments and presentations. He was a dry fly fisherman and I spent my formative fishing years in the mountain streams of Wyoming and Montana. Fast forward to my adult years and those streams still draw me as do the wild rivers of Alaska, Canada, and Lake Superior.

When I'm not fishing, you can find me with a shotgun chasing pheasants, ducks and geese.

Pete - Minnesota Steelheader - Director

Being a true blue Minnesotan who grew up hunting and fishing I always felt like something was missing. Then one day my good buddy DB talked me into going up to the North Shore for a little Steelhead fishing. Ever since that day I have been hooked!! Of course it helped that I caught a fresh steelie on my 8th drift. My steelheading adventures have since spanned to the waters of British Columbia. 

Fishing the rivers of the North Shore with buddies is what life is all about.

NMF - Minnesota Steelheader - VP | Director

Our Mission Statement:

The lack of North Shore fishing information readily available to Minnesota steelhead anglers had been a frustrating issue for many in the past.  In 2005 Minnesota Steelheader (MNST) was formed with a goal to change that.  This website was developed and with the help from a few bright volunteers, we  created an in-depth resource for veterans and newcomers alike. Here you will find interesting information, fisheries data, maps, pictures, fishing reports, fishing guides, custom data charts and more all in one easy to navigate website. We also have some very informative information on our social media. 

As a non profit, we plan to build upon Minnesota Steelheader with, cooperative research programs, more organized angler involvement, volunteer opportunities, and more in-depth personalized steelhead, salmon, and trout related information.

We are comprised of a volunteer Board of Directors, field staff, and ambassadors that live along the North Shore and throughout greater Minnesota.  Regardless of where we call home, we are all passionate, and experienced North Shore anglers who wish to share the resources and pass on this fishery to other generations.

My steelhead mania began towards the tail end of the North Shore hay-days of the 1960's. If I close my eyes I can still see (and hear!) the swollen, roiling waters of the Knife as I stared wide-eyed out of a sleeping bag perched on the tailgate of my Dad's 1949 Willy's Overland 4x4. At 4 years old though, I didn't have much patience or tolerance for the cold… Fortunately my Dad would always figure out a way to get me into fish, even if it wasn't a steelhead, which was how I was introduced to stream trout.

From there I spent virtually all of my free time exploring Northwest Wisconsin, Southeast Minnesota, and eventually Southeast Wisconsin for trout, steelhead and salmon.

I was about 12 when I caught my first trout on the white water river in Altura MN. I was on a hunting trip, but I was immediately hooked on trout fishing. Once I returned home the search was on. I started fishing steelhead at 16, most of my days were unsuccessful but the passion was already there and when I finally landed my first fish my addiction had paid off. When I finally got a hang of it I just wanted more knowledge, you never have enough. But being on the water isn't just about the fishing for me, just listening to the water washes any stress off me and instantly puts me in extreme relaxation. I love trying new spots, new rivers, new techniques, and I get out on the water as much as possible all year. I was born and raised 10 min from Duluth, and have fished the shore since 2006. If you see me out there come say Hi!!

Adam - Minnesota Steelheader - Legacy Director

I grew up in Roseau, MN fishing the beautiful Canadian Shield lake named, Lake of the Woods. Over the last 8 years I’ve fished the rivers of the Northwest and call the torrent streams of the North Shore home.

Chasing Steelhead has become a lifestyle and tremendously rewarding, not only from the fish but from the friends and family I've gained along the way. I haven’t found a better way to articulate why I love to fish better than John Voelkner did, so why reinvent the wheel when his prose is perfectly round. “I fish because I love to; because I love the environs where trout are found, which are invariably beautiful, and hate the environs where crowds of people are found, which are invariably ugly; because of the television commercials, cocktail parties and assorted social posturing I thus escape; because, in a world where most men seem to spend their lives doing things they hate, my fishing is at once an endless source of delight and an act of small rebellion; because trout do not lie or cheat but respond only to quietude and humility and endless patience; because I suspect that men are going along this way for the last time, and I for one don't want to waste the trip; because mercifully there are no telephones on trout waters; because only in the woods can I find solitude without loneliness; because bourbon out of an old tin cup tastes better out there; because maybe someday I will catch a mermaid; and, finally, not because I regard fishing as being so terribly important but because I suspect that so many of the other concerns of men are equally unimportant - and not nearly so much fun.”

Get out there, have fun and hang on!

Lisa - Minnesota Steelheader - Secretary  |  Membership Director

Whether it's out on a boat on the "Big Lake", drifting a river or casting from shore with her preschooler in tow, where there's open water you can bet Lisa is fishing it. Not your typical stay-at-home mom, Lisa is a Northshore resident with a passion for Steelheading.
"I love every aspect of this sport but am especially intrigued by the constant challenge of having to adapt to the elements. No matter if it's water levels, the weather, flies/bait, or just navigating terrain at times (I'm not exactly the most graceful person on earth), there's always something new to learn and that's simply awesome. And whenever the opportunity to educate others is presented, I love to do so and think the future of our sport depends on it."

Meet the MNST Team:

The MNST team are passionate, un-paid volunteers who donate time and talent working together with a common goal: to conserve and protect the natural steelhead, trout and salmon fisheries while, informing, inspiring, and entertaining veterans and new-comers alike to North Shore trout and salmon fishery.

Drop us a line sometime and let us know how we are doing. What you would like to see?  What would you like to share? Do you want to get envolved? 
mnsteelheader@gmailDOTcom

My fishing adventures have spanned from the rivers of Alaska and BC to the blue waters of Florida and the Virgin Islands and a bunch of wonderful locations in-between. Most of my steelhead fishing has been in Minnesota and Wisconsin, with my largest steelhead out of Lake Michigan back in '91. That 37.5" beauty is still looking good on a wall today, but my most memorable steelhead angling experiences come from the rushing rivers and streams of Minnesota's beautiful North Shore of Lake Superior.

Aaron - Minnesota Steelheader - Director

I started fishing when I was old enough to stand. From there on every moment I had free was spent on the water. When I was 15 years old I discovered steelhead fishing on the North Shore of Lake Superior and have since made it my passion. Living a few minutes from Duluth MN enables me spend more time on the shore than I probably should but with the fantastic fishery we have it's hard to stay away!  Whether it be targeting salmon and kamloops during the winter months shore casting, drift fishing the rivers during the awesome spring run or even chasing fall run powerhouse steelhead as the leaves start to fall I take advantage of every oppurtunity to wet a line. If the fish have taught me anything over the years it would be that I need to always stay humble. Rivers change, new tactics develop and I have grown to realize that I myself must do the same to be succesful. That's what I love about steelhead fishing. Every day is different and you never know what may be around the bend or hiding in that next "perfect drift".

Davin - Minnesota Steelheader - P | Director

Copyright © 2005 - 2020 Minnesota Steelheader   •   PO Box 10848   •   White Bear Lake, MN   55110   •   All rights Reserved

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About us:

Matt - Minnesota Steelheader - Field Staff

I was a naive teenager with absolutely zero experience when I first picked up an 8 wt Sage DS2 and tried my luck at bottom bouncing a stonefly. Waiting in angst for a steelhead to choose my fly to eat for breakfast I became eternally bored until I hooked my first migratory trout in white foam below a 15' waterfall. Ever since that moment close to the Canadian border, whether I fought the fish for less than five seconds or less I was addicted. What really for lack of a better term "floats my boat" is after so many years now of learning this country, rivers and fish, it's really something to give it back to the people.

This could be you - Minnesota Steelheader - 

DO you have the drive and passion to become part of the MNST team? If so, reach out to one of our team members or send us an email.  We are always interested to learn more about the anglers in our community and their desires and passion to become part of the MNST team of instructors, mentors, writers, photographers, speakers, and fisheries advocates.  Contact us today we would enjoy talking with you.

My trout fishing adventures began when I was five years old with my father. I grew up fishing the trout streams of St. Louis and Carlton counties, as well as the inland trout lakes of Northeastern Minnesota. As I grew older, I began to explore the tributaries of Lake Superior's North Shore. I then discovered what migratory fish were. Since those days, I have had quite a few lucky days chasing coaster brook trout and steelhead. I now spend 12 months of the year chasing migratory fish along the North Shore. The ups and downs of migratory trout fishing is what I enjoy. Everything is earned by time on the water. I have a strong passion for helping new anglers who are curious to see what the North Shore has to offer, as I too was once a novice angler. Good luck fishing!

Trevor - Minnesota Steelheader - Instructor / clinic guide

Minnesota Steelheader is a MN nonprofit organization driven by volunteers who share a common interest of conserving the Lake Superior steelhead, trout, and salmon fisheries on Minnesota's North Shore tributaries while informing, inspiring, and educating on the water, on-line, and in our communities.

A renewed interest in the North Shore brought me back, but I soon discovered that information about actually fishing the Shore was in short supply; and a new obsession took hold: That of putting together as much statistical data on the Shore as I could lay my grubby little hands on.

Since then I've been lucky enough to have traveled and fished all over North America, parts of South America and a fair chunk of Europe; but I am still drawn like iron to a magnet back to the North Shore. I've also been party to various conservation organizations and run a few websites.

I would briefly like to acknowledge my Dad, "The General" at this point: Teacher, Fishing Partner and Chief Rival. You could drop that S.O.B. in the middle of the dang Sahara and he'd come out with fish. GEEZE that gets annoying! I hope to become 1/64th the steelhead fisherman he is. Thanks Dad for teaching me everything I know about fishing, now quit holding out!

Realizing that fish have tails, and they use them to move all over the river has helped me use my own legs to really explore the North Shore of Lake Superior for myself to chase trout; that is where preparation and luck really meet. The phrase "I'd rather be lucky than skilled" becomes morphed into this world where both skill and luck join together in perfect harmony. And that to me is the epitome of steelhead fishing. It's a dream I chase and a passion I choose to share with others because I am not only driven to expand my knowledge, I'm also driven by the memories I make every single time I take a step into a beautifully, and glacially cut riverbed. The desire to share what I have experienced with others is insatiable. Whether I am trolling in my boat on the second largest freshwater lake in the world, or fishing it's gorgeous and cavernous trout tributaries, I am willfully at the demise of what the day has in store for me as long as I'm on the water. I implore you to go exploring to see what the outdoors has in store for you. I am grateful to be apart of a group with a large outreach to help you achieve what I have done, and hopefully get you there in a safe, ethical, and enjoyable manner.

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