Well, I have no ice testing pictures. Don went out last Thursday and forgot to call me. I can give you the results from the about 30 holes that he made. Out in the middle of Gunflint the ice ranged from 10-14 inches thick. Generally it was a solid blue ice. Surprisingly just in front of the dock the ice was only about 6 inches thick. That is a safe thickness for walking but we won’t be driving vehicles on the ice for a bit yet. I also wish to make the point that this in no way declares that the ice is safe all over Gunflint Lake. Ice changes all the time during the winter. Whenever you go on the ice, be sure to check the local conditions where you are going. Bruce fell through the ice once as a boy and he says it is not something you wish to experience.
As with everyone, our life has changed a bit in the past week. We bought a house on Tucker Lake which is about 5 miles from the lodge. One day we may not be running Gunflint (not anytime soon) and it would be nice to have a place to live. Our friends Tom and Melissa were selling their beautiful home and we could not resist. The two of them will continue to live on Tucker Lake until remodeling is done on their new home near the Cities. Then in March Bruce and I will make the big move. Many of you have lived all over the country but this is the first time (except for college and the military) that Bruce will not live on Gunflint Lake. For me, I have only lived here for 44 years so it is not as big a change for me.
The next question is what will happen to the house we are presently living in? It will become Cabin #12 or the Pow Wow Lodge. With 5 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, a large living room with fireplace and a good size kitchen, we hope that many of you will enjoy a stay in it. The remodeled unit will be available starting Memorial Day. Since most of our large cabins are already booked for the summer, keep track of the progress on the Pow Wow Lodge at our regular website at www.gunflint.com. In fact, that website will give you all the current information about what is going on at Gunflint.
With more guests around this January, the deer are getting fed more regularly and their numbers have increased. This has just attracted more wolves. We see them on the lake most every day. You never know when they are going to appear.
This fall there have been several articles in the Minneapolis paper about how the DNR thinks the moose population is going down. We personally have not seen as many moose this past couple of years. Starting with the holidays, however, our guests are seeing lots more moose as they drive up. My guess is that 50% of our guests are seeing moose on the road either coming or going. Hopefully this means a real increase in the population.