Safe opener claims one
A Wisconsin man died of natural causes the opening day of the state's deer gun hunting season in Bayfield County. Gerald L. Amdahl, 72, of Oregon, Wis., was found dead on National Forest land in the town of Washburn at 5:30 p.m. Saturday, accordi...
A Wisconsin man died of natural causes the opening day of the state's deer gun hunting season in Bayfield County.
Gerald L. Amdahl, 72, of Oregon, Wis., was found dead on National Forest land in the town of Washburn at 5:30 p.m. Saturday, according to a statement by the Lt. Dan Clark of the Bayfield County Sheriff's Department.
Amdahl was last seen at approximately 5:50 that morning going to his deer stand to hunt. His son found him that evening about 100 feet from the stand, according to Clark.
The Iron River Fire and Ambulance and Bayfield County Sheriff's Department responded to the scene.
Bayfield County Coroner Gary Victorson ruled the cause of death as "sudden cardiac death."
The incident was unusual.
"We have not had many hunters who have died in the woods," Clark said.
Other incidents over the weekend opener were more typical, he said. They included numerous trespassing calls and one report of lost hunters who were found minutes after the call was made.
In Douglas County, no deaths or lost hunters were reported over the weekend, according to Operations Lt. Gary Gulbrandson of the Douglas County Sheriff's Department.
"So far, so good," he said.
The nine-day gun deer hunting season ends Sunday. Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources officials expect as many as 650,000 gun hunters will go afield this year, according to the DNR Web site. The current state whitetail population is estimated to be about 1.8 million animals, according to Jim Bishop, northern region public affairs manager for the DNR.
Numbers coming in this morning showed the deer harvest was up 13 percent in Ashland County and up 12 percent in Iron County, Bishop said. Douglas County numbers had not been posted as of press time. Bishop said no hunting-related accidents had been reported in any of the 12 northern counties of Wisconsin.