DNR crews are posting new Walk-In Access lands over the next two weeks, and 30,000 acres of additional hunting ground will be open to public hunting this fall.

Walk-In Access provides hunting opportunities on private land that is already enrolled in existing conservation programs or on lands with natural cover.

The WIA program pays landowners to allow hunter access. Hunters with a $3 Walk-In Access validation may hunt a half-hour before sunrise until a half-hour after sunset during open hunting seasons from Sept. 1 to May 31. No additional landowner contact is necessary.

The program began in 2011 when the state received a grant from the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture's Voluntary Public Access Program. Another grant of $1.67 million was awarded to help fund the program from 2015 to 2018, by the Natural Resources Conservation Service and USDA.

Additional funding sources include:

  • A one-time appropriation from the Minnesota State Legislature in 2012
  • A $5.00 surcharge on nonresident hunting licenses
  • Donations of $1, $3, or $5 made by hunters purchasing deer and small game licenses

To locate Walk-In Access land, visit: https://www.dnr.state.mn.us/walkin/find.html.