Saturday, March 23, 2013

It Is Only Unpacking Now

We are moved to Tucker Lake! At any rate almost everything was transferred from one house to the other by 4:00 Monday (18th). Unpacking is a little different story. Monday night was our first night in the new house. I got the bed made okay. Then it was time to work on dinner. I had planned on brats and mac and cheese. The brats were going to be cooked on the George Foreman grill. It was the mac and cheese that was the problem. I couldn’t find any sauce pans. So I ended up cooking the pasta in a frying pan. By then I was so tired that I really didn’t care. Bruce was just as tired as I so both of us tossed and turned together all night. One of the items missing in action was our alarm clock. Neither of us wanted to oversleep the next morning. The alarm clock didn’t surface until Thursday.

At this point it is a matter of unpacking boxes and remembering where everything got put. One of the more painful aspects of the move is that our old house was on one floor. This house has a basement and a second story. I have only fallen once on the steps. It was more embarrassing than painful. Lee and Eva and the kids are coming to visit next weekend. Most everything should at least be out of boxes by then.

In spite of how busy this move is, life around us seems to continue on. Bonnie has been seeing a lynx around the outfitters. Last weekend one of the guests was on the sliding hill with his son. The lynx ran past him chasing a snowshoe hare. What an exciting thing to see! I am afraid that all the snowshoe hares around us have fallen prey to the lynx.

Sheryl sent me this picture to remind me of what our ice was like last year at this time. Right now you can drive cars on the lake and the ice is about 30 inches thick. The picture was taken on March 12, 2012. She and Bonnie left from the Cross River bridge to canoe to Magnetic Lake which they thought had open water. When they got to the narrows, they saw that Magnetic was filled with rotten ice. You couldn’t walk on it and you couldn’t paddle though it.

Right now it looks like the ice could be off Gunflint sometime during the beginning of May. That is a bit of a guess on my part but nothing has even started to melt on the ice. The Gunflint Trail is bare and dry. Some side roads have most of their snow off while others still have a covering of snow and ice. We are getting melting on sunny days but there is still a lot of snow in the woods. All our cross country ski trails are in excellent shape.

My neighbor, Fred, tells me that we have received just over 65 inches of snow this winter. Combine that with our cold weather (down to minus 30 and more) and it was a much more normal winter for us.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

The Move is Coming

Last night we got about 4 inches of new snow. Suddenly everything looks white and fresh. I usually don’t think that the first night of Daylight Saving Time will give us more snow but what can we do. After all the activity between the Trout Derby and the Mush for the Cure, this snowfall makes the entire lake look white and new. It will also make all the trails sparkle with new snow.

As Bruce mentioned on our homepage, he did get a close haircut. It looks pretty good and we were amazed at how much it has grown out even in a couple of days. He went to town yesterday for a talk at the ACA. It was funny how many people did not recognize him.

Of course, the races are the big thing for the Mush for the Cure. This year they had 16 mushers in the short course and 24 mushers in the long course. Teams came from New Jersey, Los Angeles, and Idaho just to name a few.

Bruce and I walked down to see the dogs take off. Occasionally, I have people mention to me how cruel it is for the dogs to have to pull the sleds. I wish everyone could see the dogs waiting to take off for the race. Every single dog was barking and straining to start going. No dog wanted to be left behind. They all just shot out when the race started.

Part of the deal is for the mushers to dress in pink. Here is a picture of our guide and musher Adam. He came in third in the race and won the ribbon for the best costume. He also raised over $900 in donations. We are all very proud of him. All the mushers devote a lot of time and work to participate in this event.

You may be wondering about our big move. It’s coming. On the 18th we will start to take stuff over to Tucker Lake. Meanwhile our house looks awful. I am not an immaculate housekeeper but we do like things picked up. Well, this house is filled with boxes – both empty and full. Bruce and I are wondering how we managed to accumulate so much stuff. The move is forcing us to get rid of a bunch of stuff either through the thrift store or the garbage. It is almost embarrassing how much stuff there is.

The only saving thought is that Tom and Melissa’s stuff in our new house is just as overpowering as ours is. They will be moving out on the 15th and going down near the Twin Cities. The pull of grandchildren was just too strong for them to ignore.

Living on Tucker Lake is going to be a new experience for us. We are going to have to commute to work. All these years you people have told us about the joys of commuting. Now we are going to experience. Of course, I can’t complain too much. Our commute is only five miles.

Monday, March 04, 2013

March Pops In

March has popped in on us and it feels just a tad bit warmer.  We can still get below zero but it warms up into the twenties almost every day.  Of course, the days are also getting longer.  It is the kind of weather where people are more interested in getting outside.
With that in mind, Sunday (the 3rd) was the snowmobile club’s annual trout derby on Gunflint Lake.  It appeared to be one of the best attended in several years.  Bruce and I went over for just a moment.  It looked like at least 100 people were gathered around.  It is a great family even with all ages finding something to do.  The winning fish weighed about 6 ½ pounds.  It was a good enough for the $500 first prize.  That’s not a bad reward for a morning’s fishing.  Gunflint looks rather barren this morning with everyone cleared off.  I have a small picture for you.  The main lodge at Gunflint is just barely visible in the background.
Bonnie from the outfitters also felt the urge to get outside for a bit this past week.  She met Janice from the Quetico Park at the gate to the Chik-Wauk Museum.  The two of them were going to snowshoe up to the top of Blueberry Hill.  Starting at the gate it is about 1 ½ miles up to the top of the hill.  Once on top you get a wonderful view down the Saganaga Channel.  Bonnie figured the up and down took about 2 hours total time.  By the time they got to the top she was ready to die but it was worth it.  On the top is a beautiful bench that Bob Baker Sr. built.  He is assembled it, then disassembled it, and a group of guys carried the pieces up where Bob put it back together again.  It is a great spot from which to absorb the forest and lakes spreading out in front of you.
Our dog musher, Adam, has been very busy giving rides to everyone around.  The warm days (up here daytime temperatures in the twenties are considered warm) have tempted lots of people to take a ride.  Last Saturday Adam was giving rides on the lake as he usually does.  A couple was in the sled and they all took off as planned.  Suddenly Adams was distracted for just a minute.  At the same time the sled’s runners went over a runted area.  In just a flash, Adam was off the sled and in the snow.  He jumped up and ran after the dogs yelling for them to stop.  They slowed down a bit and he tried to get the guests to use their feet as brakes.  Finally all the dogs stopped and Adam caught up to them.  It is a good reminder that Adam is not just along for the ride.  He has to concentrate all the time to keep control over everything.
Reservations for the summer are really coming in.  Every day we are surprised at how many people are calling to reserve their favorite cabin.  If you are thinking about coming our way this summer, give us a call so that we can hold your special cabin.