February 9, 2012

Winter is still holding on. We have had no new snow, but what we have is staying with us ………….we have been having fairly seasonal temperatures. Tonight we may see 20 below zero. The past week has been beautiful with lots of sun. The Sun is climbing back north and is intense enough now that a person needs to wear sunblock.  Sun glasses are mandatory to prevent snow blindness.

We started to pack and groom the firewood trails this week. This just involves pulling a wooden drag behind the snowmobile to level the trail so that it is not so rough. We are pulling heavy loads, the smoother the trail the easier it is on the equipment. We will haul in 6′ lengths that we cut last fall and then we will buck the wood into wood stove lengths and then split it. Fun work. We split all the wood by hand, it is faster,  quieter and you can nurse a beer while you work. A person really can’t split wood or burn brush without a beer.

We are getting more birds, numbers and varieties, now that we have a heavier snow cover and colder weather. Whether that is the reason, I don’t know. Still have pine martens coming to Sundew and to Triangle. Wolves have been see near Sundew again and on the Kawishiwi River, south of Triangle cabin.

Friday, another beautiful sunny and  cold day. Days like today make up for all the warm,cloudy and dismal days we have had this winter. Even with wind chills in the minus 30 range, the sun is warm and soothing deep in the woods.

Saw Lynx or Bobcat tracks along the trail to Lark lake again today. We have seen the tracks more frequently during the past couple of years, probably because the Snowshoe Hare numbers are up too. Last week, I almost hit a Lynx (Bobcat) on the way home. Luckily, I was going slow so I missed it and got a good look. There have also been numerous reports of sightings and trail cam pictures in the Ely area.

We had guests arrive today at Triangle Lake. Andy chose not to ski in, but ride his snow bike in. What a way to get around in the winter………..I need to get one!  They do great on trails and hardly leave an imprint on packed trails. The bikes do well also in powder, but you need to reduce the psi so the tires float better. This is really catching on and , I’m sure, we will start seeing a lot more of them.

Katie and Brian were staying at the Triangle Lake cabin with Lynn and Andy, the guy on the bike. Brian and Katy are partners in the new brewery in Minneapolis, the FULTON BREWEREY.  Great beer, got to sample some this past weekend..super. Can’t wait to try their IPA. They are opening their new tap room this coming Saturday at noon! Stop by and sample some great Minnesota beer. www.fultonbeer.com

snow bike 001

snow sculptures 004