New Heritage Story tells about fishing in the 1950s


A recently posted story in our website’s growing database tells about exploring the St. Croix River’s braided channels above Stillwater starting in 1958, searching for big northern pike that were rumored to dwell there. (You can easily share your own story or stories here.) Dick Ugland shared the following:

Big game hunting on the St. Croix River

I have caught Amberjack in the Gulf of Mexico, walleye, northern pike, bass and panfish all over the Midwest, and now my wife and I are happy catching the sunfish and crappies from our dock on Ward Lake near Frederic, Wisconsin.

But by far my greatest fishing thrills came from my “secret fishing spot” on the St. Croix River. This small segment of the river became so amazingly productive that in my family it was soon classified BRALBO, which means the location would be revealed to “Blood Relatives and the Legally Blind Only.”

Well, there were to be a few BRALBO exceptions, like friends Herb and Jim. I enjoyed this place on a great river along with my son Erik, my father, Arthur, and other visiting relatives over a period of about 20 years. We took a lot of pictures. Then I moved away from the area for several years. It started like this.

In 1958, while in graduate school at the University of Minnesota and working part time at the U of M Hospital’s Rehabilitation Department, I learned that a couple of the staff therapists had happened upon good northern pike fishing spot on the St. Croix River. If we had any doubt, their claim was proven by their pictures in the Minneapolis Star Newspaper on July 28. Their fabulous catch of three northern pike weighed, respectively, 17 pounds, 6 ounces; 16 pounds, 8 ounces; and 10 pounds, 4 ounces. The report in the Minneapolis Star cited the Boy Scout Camp as the location of their good luck.

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