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Dusty Takes Family, Friends Fishing in Saskatchewan; Bear Almost Eats Him

In his most profound political observation, Dennis Daugaard said that, after the primary, most voters just want to go to the lake.

Congressman Dusty Johnson and his family agree. After he won his primary last month, the Johnson went to the lake—but instead of just heading up the street to Lake Mitchell, they took three pals 1,600+ kilometers north to Keefe Lake in northern Saskatchewan. Kevin Woster reports on this fishing expedition:

Keefe Lake in northern Saskatchewan, 1,600 km north of Lake Mitchell. From Google Maps, annotated 2022.07.15.
Keefe Lake in northern Saskatchewan, 1,600 km north of Lake Mitchell. From Google Maps, annotated 2022.07.15.

“It’s really remote, incredible. And it’s really not about the fishing. It’s about spending time together. It’s about reminding yourself that your soul is not in your cell phone,” says the 45-year-old Republican U.S. representative from Mitchell. “And for me, it’s also about looking around at a pristine part of the world to remind myself that there are things more important than politics.”

…“At least for me, there’s a religious flavor to this,” he says. “I can’t, after five days of that experience, I can’t help but come away with more of a sense of a higher power than I can when I’m bustling around in the concrete jungle of Washington, D.C.” [Kevin Woster, “Congressman Seeks True Soul Far from the Concrete Jungle,” SDPB Radio, 2022.07.14]

A black bear sought to join the expedition, perhaps to get a little Dusty flavor:

A black bear had paid the camp a visit while the previous fishing group was there. The camp manager went out with a gun and fired a round or two to scare it away. He fired another warning shot on the second day Johnson and the family were there. When the bear returned on the third day, the camp manager peppered the bear with a round of light bird shot, which encouraged a grudging departure.

“The bird shot did it,” Johnson says [Woster, 2022.07.14].

Funny—Johnson’s colleague Senator John Thune says South Dakotans need assault rifles to dispatch prairie dogs. Yet all Saskatchewanians need to save South Dakota’s lone Congressman from becoming a bear d’œuvre is a shotgun.


  1. 96Tears 2022-07-15 07:15

    Dusty was in no danger from a bear. Not enough meat on those bones to make the effort worthwhile.

  2. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2022-07-15 08:11

    96, I’m not convinced that “I’m skinny!” has been tested as a reliable bear repellent. Black bears do eat young elk and deer.

    Then again, I’ve met two black bears—one Albertan, one Minnesotan—and neither took a chomp out of me. Maybe black bears prefer slower, meatier game… or maybe the ones I met already had tummies full of berries and bugs.

  3. grudznick 2022-07-15 08:28

    After dispatching with Ms. Taffy, we should not begrudge Mr. Dusty some tasty Canadian fish.

  4. cibvet 2022-07-15 09:00

    I’m quite sure their own bear dung would be more palatable than a politician.

  5. Loren 2022-07-15 09:27

    I’m sure Dusty was looking at all that pristine, quiet beauty and wondering how much better it would be with a pipeline run thru the forrest or an oil rig in the middle of the lake. Just imagine the money in all that timber! Republicans have a unique view of “beauty.”

  6. Arlo Blundt 2022-07-15 15:06

    Well…a fishing trip to Canada is the best idea credited to Congressman Johnson in my memory. Glad he got centered in the woods. He did vote for the Jan.6 Committee and for that he should be thanked…that committee is revealing the naked, ugly truth of Trump’s sedition.

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