Michigan U.P. Trappers Association August 2012 Report


President — John Gunville, N 125 Co. Rd. 577, Vulcan, MI 49892; 906-563-5940; jgunville@hotmail.com

Vice President — Luke Tomasoski, W 7705 E Bar D Dr, Iron Mountain, MI 49801; 906-212-8946; tski350@yahoo.com

Secretary — Mike Lewis, N 5246 M-95, Iron Mountain, MI; 906-774-3592; Louie.builds@live.com

Treasurer — Dan Absolon, 598 Premo Creek Road, Crystal Falls, MI 49920; phone 906-822-7764; elkhunterdan97@yahoo.com

NTA Director — Bob Steinmetz, 4984 Karen 17.25 St, Escanaba, MI 49829; 906-786-6265;

FTA Affiliate 10-D (District 3) — Duane Halvas, W5623 River Meadow Lane, Norway, MI 49870; 906-563-9559; lutefisk642@hotmail.com

Website — Russ Brittain, 7321 Lake Bluff 19.4 Rd, Gladstone, MI 49837; 906-428-1429; rbrittain@chartermi.net; www.uptrappers.com


Membership Options:

• One-year membership including subscription to Trapper & Predator Caller — $27

• One-year membership without magazine — $15

• One-year junior membership (16 & under) including subscription to Trapper & Predator Caller — $27

• Junior membership without the magazine — $3

Complete the membership application on the first page of association section and send dues to:

Dan Absolon, Secretary

598 Premo Creek Road

Crystal Falls, MI 49920


Please specify which district you want to join: District 1 (Keweenaw, Houghton and Baraga counties); District 2 (Ontonagon, Gogebic and Iron counties); District 3 (Delta, Menominee and Dickinson counties); District 5 (Marquette, Alger and Schoolcraft counties).



The Antis are out in force and they are using every tool in their large arsenals to shut us down. Their latest tactic is really scary. They are using what trappers say and do to attack trapping!!!! That’s guys like you and me — providing them with ammunition! The case getting the most publicity is an incident where an individual caught a wolf (legally) and then hunters (poachers) shot and wounded the animal. Then the trapper posted photos on a trapping forum. The pictures showed the wolf in a bloody fight circle caused by the wounds. The Antis then took the photos and went viral with articles and postings on Anti websites. POSTING COMMENTS AND PICTURES THAT CAN BE SPREAD FAR AND WIDE IS EXTREMELY DANGEROUS – because we KNOW the facts WILL GET DISTORTED!!!!!! So, be careful what you say and do — and be careful what you post on the internet.

Also make sure you don’t set traps where pets are likely to be caught. Minnesota is presently fighting to minimize restrictions on 220’s because of an incident in that state. We trappers have enough enemies without becoming “our own worst enemies” by not exercising some common sense and using safe, ethical, and humane trapping methods.

The Lynx issue in Maine should have been over a long time ago and thanks to the Herculean efforts of all those great organizations fighting for our rights we have come out pretty good so far. The one remaining “stickler” is that Maine’s Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife has not yet received the Incidental Take Permit from the USFWS despite a well-researched and scientifically sound proposal. And the USFWS (an organization that is supposed to be protecting our resources through sound, scientific management) has seen fit to suggest numerous additional restrictions to the Incidental Take Permit (before the public comment period) that have no scientific basis and that would severely restrict trapping in the State of Maine. It appears that the Feds are actually encouraging the public to comment that they think these additional restrictions should be adopted!!

So, we are fighting the Antis, the Feds, people who simply don’t know what trapping is all about, Antis within our state legislatures and game departments, AND OURSELVES.

Please consider using a few bucks from that “bigger than normal” fur check to support those organizations fighting for your rights. Every trapper in the Upper Peninsula should (at a minimum) be a member of the U.P. Trappers Association AND a member of the National Trappers Association. And anyone who can afford it should also join our other three Michigan trapping organizations: Northern Great Lakes Fur Harvesters, Mid-Michigan Independent Trappers, and the Michigan Trapper and Predator Callers Association. And while I am trying to spend your fur check I would also ask that you consider joining the Fur Takers of America and the United States Sportsman’s Alliance. Every one of these great organizations is doing everything they can to keep you trapping!!!! And they keep us informed on the issues threatening our very existence!

Due to the tight economy some of you may only have the money to join the U.P. Trappers Association (or Northern Great Lakes Fur Harvesters, if you live on the East end of the U.P.). And that’s alright but there are other less costly ways you can help! Attend our convention on July 13 & 14 in Escanaba and get your needed supplies there. Let Mike Lewis know if you can help out at the convention for a couple of hours. (Mike Lewis, N5246 M-95, Iron Mountain, MI 49801, (906) 774-3592, or Louie.builds@live.com) Help us sell some raffle tickets, so we can contribute to those organizations you can’t afford to support. Tickets are available from Jim Engel or can be picked up when you attend your district meetings. (Jim Engel, 44118 Paradise Road, Chassell, MI 49916, (906) 523-4065, (906) 250-5287, or jengel@up.net) The tickets have some great prizes – five great guns and lots of cash – so are easy to sell and are priced at only $5 each or five tickets for $20. And you can help us win the bid to host a National Trappers Association convention in 2014! Winning this bid is on my “bucket list” and I (as you’re NTA Director) will do everything I can to make it happen!!! By offering to help out at the convention for just one day, you can help us win the bid. The NTA wants to know that we will have enough volunteers to assure that the convention runs smoothly. And I want to show them a list of HUNDREDS of volunteers when I submit the bid this August in Minnesota! If you can work for a day get your contact info to me at: Bob Steinmetz, 4984 Karen 17.25 Street, Escanaba, MI 49829, (906) 786-6265, beaverbob@uptrappers.com.

The U.P. Trappers Association was established on January 21, 1962 and is celebrating fifty years of serving area trappers. They are hard at work assuring that this year’s convention in Escanaba is “extra special” to help celebrate their half-century of existence. They already have commitments from vendors including crafters, magazine publishers, taxidermists, a gun dealer, a welder, representatives from two wild fur Auction Houses, quilters, predator hunting and calling suppliers, etc. – AND DOZENS OF TRAPPING SUPPLY DEALERS – that will fill the large Butler Building at the Upper Peninsula State Fairgrounds to capacity – with additional vendors spilling over outside.

The Schedule of Events is already shaping up beyond expectations: One of the demonstrators will be a Predator Caller who was the first and only caller to win all three major calling championships (Midwest, National, and World) – and he won them all in a single year! Les Johnson from Nebraska will be at the Anniversary Convention – doing calling demos both days. Another special treat will be an “old time trapper” who has shown the younger, more energetic trappers that he can still compete with “the best of them.” Trapper Art from Wisconsin will be sharing with area trappers the methods and equipment he used to trap over 8000 muskrats this past season. More great demos will be announced later. In addition area trappers and other outdoor enthusiasts can expect to save money on needed supplies, hone their skills, and have a great time. And even those who don’t hunt or trap can enjoy themselves. There will be raffles, drawings, shopping, jewelry making, and much more – and at the DNR Pocket Park there will be free fishing for the kids – supervised by volunteers for the Normenco Sportsman’s Club – doing everything they can to keep the kids smiling, reeling in fish, and winning prizes.

The Convention and Outdoor Show is open to the public and admission for adults is $2.00. Sixteen and under are admitted free. You can camp right on the grounds for only $20.00 a night—including water, electricity, and available showers. Lots of reasonable motels in Escanaba too! For more information contact Roy Dahlgren at (906) 399-1960. — Bob Steinmetz

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