outdoors

Dale Bowman biography

Outdoors columnist Dale Bowman began his reporting career as a correspondent covering state government for WTAJ-TV in 1982. While in graduate school in 1984, he …

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  • Drumming up another fishery on Lake Michigan

    David Allevato faced a good problem on the morning of July 11: He battled a fish so big that there was no way to lift it up at 31st Street Harbor. ‘‘Actually, I had to climb down the ladder on the side and reach down …Read More

  • 7/23: Midwest Fishing Report

    MIDWEST FISHING REPORT LAKEFRONT PERCH: CHICAGO: Soft shells best. Mike Repa, Park Bait: Some limits Tuesday at Montrose. John Saban: Only boat out Sunday morning. Caught 28 perch 10 inches or longer by the filtration plant. David Allevato: Numbers and size of perch at 31st. …

  • Waterfowl seasons set

    WATERFOWL SEASONS SET The proposed waterfowl seasons for Illinois are out in time for the public blind draws this weekend. No changes are expected from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The blind draws at northern Illinois public sites are Saturday. Most of the draws …Read More

  • Windquest beats Il Mostro in Race to Mackinac

    In a battle stretching the north-south length of Lake Michigan, Windquest outdueled Il Mostro for first-to-finish honors in the Chicago Yacht Club Race to ­Mackinac. The Max Z86, owned by Dick and Doug DeVos of Macatawa, Michigan, crossed the finish at Mackinac Island, Michigan, at …

    No alligator gar, but trip certainly not a waste

    CANTON, Ill. — I hollered out to Ben Cantrell, ‘‘How do I get out there?’’ From the camp chair he was sitting on under a canopy on a pile of gravel at a pit at Rice Lake State Fish and Wildlife Area, he yelled back, …

  • Mackinac: This year’s problem is cold water will killwinds in the middle

    The Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac projects to be uneventful by the weather models up and down Lake Michigan. So it’s probably a good thing that there’s the matter of the America’s Cup being considered briefly for Chicago. The 106th Mac had 333 boats …Read More

  • Here’s a fish story for you

    Doug Busch stands in his Eddie Olczyk Blackhawks cap, holding a big smallmouth bass — the glamor fish on the lakefront — at an iconic Chicago location beside Monroe Harbor south of Buckingham Fountain. But was it the Illinois-record smallmouth? There is no fish to …

    07/16: Midwest Fishing Report & Fish of the Week

    MIDWEST FISHING REPORT LAKEFRONT PERCH: CHICAGO: Weather slowed bite and fishermen. Should rebound with stable conditions. INDIANA: When boaters can get out, they’re catching good perch at Cal Park. Mik-Lurch guys are doing best with spinners and soft shells. Others are using baby roaches and …

    A tip to be tankful for when you’re at Bears camp

    KANKAKEE — Emilie Janes and Christina Di Monte lugged nets of fish up from the electroshocking boat Monday at Bird Park. The Olivet Nazarene University seniors handed the nets to members of the Northern Illinois Anglers Association inside a panel truck with aerated tanks. Sometimes …

  • Pond-hopping with Ken ‘Husker’ O’Malley

    At our first pond, Ken ‘‘Husker’’ O’Malley and I parked in a dead-end turnaround and walked in on a path, which dog-walkers, strollers and exercisers used regularly while we fished. It was a big-fish spot, which is why O’Malley wanted to hit it first. Once …Read More

  • 07/09: Midwest Fishing Report 07/09: Fish of the Week

    Midwest fishing report LAKEFRONT PERCH: CHICAGO: Park Bait: ‘‘Killed them’’ Tuesday morning with both minnows and soft shells. Montrose and Belmont are good. Henry’s: Good around most harbors; best is pipe at Burnham. Look for weed beds, then do drop-shotting. INDIANA: Mik-Lurch: Good catches at …Read More

  • Increase in duck numbers are good news for hunters

    For the third consecutive year, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service released a promising report last week on trends in duck-breeding populations. The 2014 report estimated there were 49.2 million breeding ducks in the surveyed area, up 8 percent from last year and 43 percent …

    Celebrating the perch of July

    It figures a small seiche surged around dawn Tuesday as three of us launched at Burnham Harbor. Even Mother Nature doesn’t give perch fishermen in Chicago a break. They finally caught a break from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources when director Marc Miller announced …

    7/2: Midwest Fishing Report & Fish of the Week

    MIDWEST FISHING REPORT LAKEFRONT PERCH: CHICAGO: Park Bait: Montrose remains best from shore, but Belmont good, too. Bite shifted to soft shells. Henry’s: Best downtown south is pipe at Burnham. Boat fishing has been tough, a few in the harbors. WAUKEGAN: Lori Ralph, Salmon Stop: …

  • Chicago out of running for America’s Cup, possible for 2015 or 2016

    Chicago will not host the 35th America’s Cup. The prestigious yacht-racing event got a little closer to finding a new home Tuesday, with San Diego and Bermuda shortlisted as candidates to host. Chicago was in the running but now looks more likely to contend in …Read More

  • Chicago a good place to explore the urban wild

    The junkyard along the Calumet system is what drove home to me the overwhelming oddity of beauty in the modern urban wilds. Around the turn of the millennium, I did a lot of running around the Calumet system with John Farmer and Rich Pinkowski in …

  • Meet Dick Phelps, the walleye master of the Kankakee River

    Dick ‘‘Flip’’ Phelps knows walleye on the Kankakee River. He was at it again this month before the high water came with another pair of big ones on the Indiana side. Phelps, who has fished the Kankakee system since 1946, has a history with walleye …Read More