DNR/CO Encounters

G

Guest

Guest
Canotrouge’s 4x140x1000 No-Moose hunt trip report got me thinking.

then we hear a chopper going over and around us to vanish below tree line.... hmmmm... and then around the bend there they are landed on a small gravel bar, 3 CO’s and a pilot waiting for us! We stoped and chat a bit, pulled out my paper work for them to sign off and we are on our way.... it was a first for me to get pulled over in my canoe by an helicopter lol!!

I have never been chopper stopped (I have had a chopper searching for the multiple-cyalume lighted, tinfoil radar-signature “UFO” I was flying several hundred feet above Miami Beach), but have been inspected by the DNR dozens of times. All good, or at least memorable, interactions. It helps that I am legal as a beagle in every way when hunting.

Had two DNR guys, long-hike miles from any road crossing, motion me over while sneakboating a river for ducks. After the usual see-your-license-and-permits “conversation”* they spent most of the time admiring my sneakboat-outfitted, camo-covered canoe.

Got stopped by two DNR guys while taking out near dusk after a day of duckhunting in the marsh. After the usual “conversation”* I spent some time with them identifying a female Fulvous Tree duck , using a Field Guide I had in the truck.

As we are inspecting the bird and the markings in the Field Guide a motorized boat with three camoed guys and a retriever comes flying up the river to the launch, sees us, does an immediate 180 and roars away in the other direction.

Thought but not said “Maybe y’all stopped the wrong hunter eh”.

* About the usual “conversation”. Seems like we’re just chatting friendly like. DNR guys are particularly skilled at that conversational tone, but the questions often disguise intent.

What time did you paddle out this morning?” actually means “Before dawn? Show me your lights”, and “So, did you come back for lunch?” actually means “Mind if I have a look inside your truck or cooler for additional birds?” It is more enjoyable if I can cut to the chase and answer “Light’s in the bow under the spray cover” or “No birds in my truck, but you are welcome to look”

I kind of enjoy those DNR interactions, in part because I have nothing to hide, in part because I truly appreciate the conservation aspect of their job, and in part because it takes more courage than I possess to enforcement-approach someone I know to be armed.

Best (or worst) DNR/CO stories?
 
Joined
Sep 20, 2019
Messages
201
Reaction score
151
Location
Godmanchester, Quebec
Not DNR/Game Warden, but RCMP. We used to hunt a true section that had about a mile of Canadian/US border as its southern boundary. All kinds of neat stuff: tiny antennae sticking out of rock piles, optics embedded in fence posts...

Anyway, we are doing some pre-season upkeep on the stands - chain saw and hammer-type work (a while before cordless tools). Next thing we know we are surrounded by dudes in black, sidearms drawn. I'm guessing they don't get out much. Uneventful once they figured out that we weren't a highly organized cartel of scrap lumber smugglers, but still kind of startling. Enough to write about 25 years later, I suppose.
 
Joined
Jun 12, 2012
Messages
3,886
Reaction score
1,525
Location
Appleton, Maine
I was pumping gas in the small town of Ashland, Maine recently when a Maine Forester Ranger approached me and asked me about my wood canvas canoe. He also noticed my wannigan in the bed of the truck and we got into a pretty interesting discussion about traditional gear (ha ha, not this again). He asked me questions and was truly interested in what I had to say.
He was young, in his twenty’s, very well spoken and looking crisp and clean in his uniform.
I came away very impressed by this young man and considered it the high point of my trip.
 
Joined
Mar 20, 2013
Messages
3,355
Reaction score
455
We get stoped often by CO’s, when we come back from our usual hunting area we usually stop in a small community and go to the First Nation store/gas station and offer the moose head to the first taker, it takes all but ten minutes and we have some one that is interested for there grand ma or some elders in the community! There is often a co in the area and he usually just take license #, tag info and verifies that the moose is an actual
male :rolleyes:...
never ask for fire arm check etc!!
 
Joined
Sep 2, 2011
Messages
6,796
Reaction score
790
Location
Raymond, ME
A few times. Once coming off a trip in Quetico I was stopped and asked for my permit. For some reason it was still readable ( paper permits and two week canoe trips are sometimes a challenging mix). I had to dig it out of my barrel which seemed to annoy him. Then he asked why I was coming off a day early after looking at my permit.

Had several with Rangers in Maine.. One came by to warn us of bad weather coming which was nice ( We had the weather figured out but no matter). Had several stop by while we have been eating lunch. They ate with us and told us some wonderful Allagash tales that you would never hear about otherwise.

The very best was when we did a short three nighter based off the campsite at Lock Dam on Chamberlain Lake. It was a sour and sometimes windy October weekend. We paddled the ten miles back to Chamberlain Bridge in a drizzle just above freezing. Ranger met us at the take out. His cabin was on the other side of the parking lot and he invited us in for coffee. We thanked him and said "first we gotta pack the car and strap down the canoe" ( first things first before we get lazy). When we entered his cabin no only was there coffee but hot pea soup and crackers. What a wonderful lunch!
 
Joined
Apr 21, 2015
Messages
731
Reaction score
282
Location
Livingston, Montana
We had a chopper stop by border patrol in the boot heel of New Mexico. A friend drove us to this really remote area of the border to start hiking north on the Continental Divide Trail. We were standing next to the 2 strands of barbed wire separating the US from Mexico when the chopper swept down, landed and a fellow jumps out. He ran over and told us they had been "monitoring" us since the day before. He asked if we were carrying firearms, which we said no and thought was the "right" answer, but apparently he thought we should have had something due to bears being in the area. Being from Montana, we had a good laugh at that comment later on. Other than us volunteering that we were hiking to Canada, no other information was exchanged.

Mark
 
Joined
Jan 8, 2014
Messages
1,291
Reaction score
283
Location
Minden, NV
I rarely see any law enforcement in the bush. In 50 years there have been a handful of encounters. A few years ago we were followed by an inflatable military drone for 2 days on the Colorado River in Feb. . I found out later it was a Border Patrol unit testing out a model they borrowed from the US Army for border surveillance. It was very creepy in a remote section of the river north of Yuma to be tailed like that. They were never closer than about 1/4 mile. A couple of days later a single Blue Angel Navy jet flew right over our campfire and rocked his wings.
 
Joined
Jul 31, 2011
Messages
518
Reaction score
237
Location
Dodgeville, Wi
One trip to WCPP I was about 6 days into a solo trip, traveling to meet up with a group For a gathering about 15 days later, I had a float plane land and taxi up me. Fires were in the area and Claire had sent them to locate me and give me a map with an alternate route so as to avoid the burn. It is an odd feeling watching a plane Taxi to your canoe and call out your name when in the middle of nowhere. That said, I was mighty glad Claire was looking out for me.
 
Joined
Feb 1, 2013
Messages
3,583
Reaction score
1,009
Location
Geraldton, Ontario
My wife was ice fishing with a bunch of girls on a lake quite bit north of here. It was a girl's weekend, and one of the gals had never ice fished before. Some of the girls engaged her in a discussion to distract her, while one of the other ladies hooked an enormous dildo on to her line and dropped it back down the hole. They started yelling at the girl to check her line, that she had a fish on. She was apparently pretty excited to be pulling in this big fish, then equally flummoxed and disturbed when it turned out to be a dildo. They all had a good laugh afterward, and casually through the dildo in a cooler on the ice.
About a half hour later a CO showed up. We all know the CO's up here, this guy was a decent sort. Anyway, he asked if they had caught any fish. One of the girls waved him toward the cooler and said "They are in there". The CO opened the cooler, stared in it for a full minute, then closed it and said "You girls have a good weekend", and then he hopped on his skidoo and took off. Didn't ask to see any licences or nuthin.
 
Joined
Jun 3, 2015
Messages
1,489
Reaction score
662
Location
Anchorage Alaska / Pocono Mts.
My wife was ice fishing with a bunch of girls on a lake quite bit north of here. It was a girl's weekend, and one of the gals had never ice fished before. Some of the girls engaged her in a discussion to distract her, while one of the other ladies hooked an enormous dildo on to her line and dropped it back down the hole. They started yelling at the girl to check her line, that she had a fish on. She was apparently pretty excited to be pulling in this big fish, then equally flummoxed and disturbed when it turned out to be a dildo. They all had a good laugh afterward, and casually through the dildo in a cooler on the ice.
About a half hour later a CO showed up. We all know the CO's up here, this guy was a decent sort. Anyway, he asked if they had caught any fish. One of the girls waved him toward the cooler and said "They are in there". The CO opened the cooler, stared in it for a full minute, then closed it and said "You girls have a good weekend", and then he hopped on his skidoo and took off. Didn't ask to see any licences or nuthin.

He must have thought they were having a really wild time if they had to cool off their dildo on ice. Funny story.
 
Joined
Aug 29, 2020
Messages
197
Reaction score
120
Mike wrote: "I kind of enjoy those DNR interactions, in part because I have nothing to hide, in part because I truly appreciate the conservation aspect of their job, and in part because it takes more courage than I possess to enforcement-approach someone I know to be armed." I could not agree more. Don't forget other public service aspects of the job, like search and rescue, and having to deal with knuckleheads and also occasionally assist in handling the more serious brands of criminal behaviors.

I don't have any outdoor officer tales worth telling, or that I can tell. I worked with them for years.
 
Joined
Jul 11, 2014
Messages
4,489
Reaction score
789
Location
Ontario Canada
My wife was ice fishing with a bunch of girls on a lake quite bit north of here. It was a girl's weekend, and one of the gals had never ice fished before. Some of the girls engaged her in a discussion to distract her, while one of the other ladies hooked an enormous dildo on to her line and dropped it back down the hole. They started yelling at the girl to check her line, that she had a fish on. She was apparently pretty excited to be pulling in this big fish, then equally flummoxed and disturbed when it turned out to be a dildo. They all had a good laugh afterward, and casually through the dildo in a cooler on the ice.
About a half hour later a CO showed up. We all know the CO's up here, this guy was a decent sort. Anyway, he asked if they had caught any fish. One of the girls waved him toward the cooler and said "They are in there". The CO opened the cooler, stared in it for a full minute, then closed it and said "You girls have a good weekend", and then he hopped on his skidoo and took off. Didn't ask to see any licences or nuthin.

Fishing for prickerel no doubt. (Sorry)

I've never had any encounters with such authority but would have no problem with their sudden appearance. I appreciate their efforts.

I always thought ice fishing was cold and boring. Boy am I ever out of touch. I'd better just keep the home-fires burning and not check the fish locker.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Sep 2, 2011
Messages
6,796
Reaction score
790
Location
Raymond, ME
Ice fishing is big here. Cold yes sometimes but when the sun is out the beach chairs come out! The kids have a great time and sometimes will shovel a nearby patch of ice free of snow to play hockey. BBQ's come out. And my dog steals fish.. She is gone now but she ran over and stole a fish ( it was laying on the ice not in a cooler) and skedaddled with it with my neighbor in hot pursuit. She did drop the fish and I was glad she was a soft mouth dog.
 
G

Guest

Guest
Thinking about all of the DRN/CO encounters I have had only one weirded me out. I was following my hunting partner and his son downriver while sneakboating ducks. When I came to a straight section of river and saw two DRN officers on the bank who had motioned Ron and Ronnie over.

I knew we were all legal; hunting licenses, duck stamps, sneaking boating permits, under the limit, etc. I was using a sentimental old single shot 12g laid across a thwart gun rest, and opened the chamber as a safety/courtesy. All good.

As one officer was inspecting my license and permit the other suddenly reached down and extracted the shell from my shot gun, no doubt looking for lead shot.

My first (unspoken) thought was “Woah there brotherman, just ask and I’ll hand you the gun, or the shell”.

I don’t know why, but that don’t-even-ask action really put me off.
 
Joined
Aug 10, 2018
Messages
277
Reaction score
188
Location
Blairsville, PA (about 30 mi E of PGH)
“... just ask and I’ll hand you the gun...”

I don't think that would have gone unspoken (I often lack a filter) but one never knows until in the moment. I know I had a State cop a bit peeved when he was leaning in my window pretty hard and I asked if I should move over so he could sit down. (yeah, I got the ticket but I figured that was going to happen any way) :cool:
 
Top