Outdoor news briefs, 7-23

Hamburg Reporter

New state park trails app available

The Iowa DNR has developed an online mapping application to help visitors navigate trails in state parks.

Through GPS and mobile data, the application can be accessed on mobile phones and helps the user identify trail names, trail heads, acceptable trail use (i.e. hiking, biking, etc.), and distances. 

The application is web-based rather than downloadable from an app store, so data service availability could be a factor when using the trail map application. 

To access trail maps, go to iowadnr.gov/stateparks and click on Iowa State Park Trails.

State parks photos sought for national contest

If you enjoy photographing Iowa state parks, the Iowa DNR invites you to enter your photos in the America’s State Parks 2021 Photo Contest, hosted by the National Association of State Park Directors. 

Photos will feature state parks from Iowa and other states, and could be included in calendars and other publications. 

Participating photographers can showcase Iowa’s beauty while winning prizes and earning national recognition for photo entries. 

Photos categories include: friends and family, camping, scenic and seasons, wildlife and activities. Participants must be aged 18 or older; the easy-to-enter contest ends on July 31. 

Visit https://stateparksphotocontest.org/ to learn more and submit your photos.

Learn To Hunt series to offer dove hunting class

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is offering a program to teach skills needed to hunt, field dress and cook mourning doves to individuals who have little to no dove hunting experience.

The Aug. 14 workshop will feature a mourning dove knowledge and skills building session with instructors that will provide hands-on learning as well as a live-fire wingshooting clinic.

“For those interested in the challenge of dove hunting as a means of sourcing their own protein, this program provides the opportunity to learn the skills and knowledge it takes to do it all yourself,” said Jamie Cook, program coordinator with the Iowa DNR.

Participants will learn basic strategies for hunting mourning doves such as proper equipment, where to hunt, safe shooting practices, and how to field dress, butcher and cook. 

The wingshooting course will provide lessons on shooting techniques and range time for those looking to improve their shooting skills.

The courses are designed for participants 16 years of age and older. The cost is $15 for the two-hour mourning dove course, $35 for the two-hour wingshooting course or a $45 combination registration is available for both courses. Space is limited so register early.

For more information and to begin the registration process, visit: http://events.constantcontact.com/register/event?llr=dep4qyuab&oeidk=a07ei7hv18r339bada2

The program is provided through a partnership with the Iowa DNR and Backcountry Hunters and Anglers. It is part of a national effort to recruit, retain and reactivate hunters due to the overall decline in hunting and outdoor recreation.