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.
Minnesota Steelheader - Director
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.
Minnesota Steelheader - Treasurer
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.
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.
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.
Meet the MNST Team:
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 - 2021 Minnesota Steelheader • PO Box 10848 • White Bear Lake, MN 55110 • All rights Reserved
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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.
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.