You may not find this terribly rewarding unless you're included here, so this is a good time for casual and random browsers to turn back before they get too caught up in the sweep and majesty of the proceedings and can't let go.
Scenes from the lake
Summer 2017 -- so far we've been on our annual study tour with the Wisconsin Wetlands Association and hosted daughters Alison and Marlowe and their nuclear families on the lake. Now for some much less focused additions to the seasonal photo dump.
An impressive rainbow, 23 July, and no wonder -- it's been that kind of summer, lots of rain and lots of sun, always in rapid alternation, sometimes overlapping, as now. Later in the season we got to get inside one of the rainbows, that was cool.
Melvin the Doge, always the centre of attention -- an amiable gathering for . . .
. . . Joellen's birthday.
A voyage down the canal
The canal was dug out in the 1890s to float logs from the larger lake at the far end into this one for sawmilling, but it turned out that this one was at a higher elevation and it never worked well.
Not so long ago, passage between the lakes was open to suitable-sized boats, to be hauled over a spillway at the far end, but for several years a while ago, with lake levels down, it was altogether impassable -- which is a good thing, in a way, because the larger lake has got an infestation of the alien invasive Eurasian millefoil (or milfoil, Myriophyllum spicatum) and who wants that coming through to this side.
Presently, with a few years of higher lake levels, this end of the canal is passable to the little lake midway, but trees down in the second stretch have closed it off, and anyway, a small beaver dam near the far end of the lake complicates matters.
Rob, Elke, and Kristin in the quiet mid-lake, 29 July 2017, with a variety of watercraft
Towards the canal's continuation
A look into the second part of the canal
Here the canal goes under a culvert-overpass for a local roadway, and it's also here that the beaver or beavers have chosen to set up shop. Somebody (with or without authorization) knocked it out earlier this year, to reduce the imbalance of the water levels, but it's back. The water level is about one foot higher on this side.
Majestic peacefulness on the little lake and a corona of dead trees
Catching up on all the news
A relaxing paddle through the back bay
Adjidaumo island, near the centre of the main part of the lake -- to visit the eagles
The juvenile is squeaking up a loud storm, hanging out just above his nest, impatient for his lunch.
A tree that got badly lightninged last year, apparently not yet recovered
And the ton-and-a-half shard blasted into the neighboring tree is still hanging there, improbably.
Don't disturb Melvin.
With Kim in her kayak
Awaiting Kim near the dock at Mussent Point
Kim and Rob charging southward out of the central part of the lake, with a variety of watercraft
Cousin Rob always has one eye on the shoreline looking for mushrooms, and the other eye looking for the alien invasive weed purple loosestrife (Lythrum salicaria).
The highway bridge at the southern end of the lake
Under the bridge to the farthest back bay. The tag alders all along the shoreline grew up under drier conditions, but are dying back now with the higher lake levels.
Disturbing a family of mergansers -- a group of eight and another of nine have been patroling the shorelines all over the lake all summer.
The Group of Nine
A purple loosestrife sighting -- most years there are scattered infestations all round the lake, which need all to be yanked out, but this summer we saw very few. Maybe they won't come back.
A yanked-out loosestrife is still a proliferating monster, and can't be tossed away into the water or bushes. Kim provides the solution.
Crossing the Bar . . .
. . . or not.
"I hope to see my Pilot face to face
When I have crost the bar."
(For 'Pilot', read "Photographer'.)
Purple loosestrife shoreline patrol
The Kim's-eye view
Return to Mussent Point
Melvin the Doge, in good company
3 August 2017, the heavens opened up
We need a quiet place to read, out of the brutal rain -- and here it is.
Now the wind is rising -- head for the house.
Another rainy day on the lake (complain, complain, complain!)
A rare early rising, 5 August -- and the serious people are already out on the lake.
A good place to read, out on the lawn, requiring only to move the chair every ten minutes, chasing the sun.
Melvin's first day out on his own
Melvin's meant to be an indoor cat, and back in our Swiss village he will have to be, but we can't stand his mournful looks spending hours staring out the windows.
He's escaped twice, a flash out the door before anyone could react, and occupied five to seven people chasing him all over the property, some with nets, some endangering themselves with flying tackles, unsuccessfully.
We will see Melvin when he wants to be seen. But not otherwise.
Over the summer, he's passed most of his tests -- never came when called, but so far has always come when he's ready, and only once wandered off the Point.
His hiding techniques are not yet finely honed, but seeing him bears no relation to catching him.
Some cats terrorize the birds, but so far Melvin the Doge cares only about insects -- about which he is obsessively diligent.
Ready to pounce
Exploring the dock . . .
. . . and under the dock.
-- How do you work one of these things, anyway?
Melvin's spotted the hydrobikes
-- How do you work one of these things, anyway?
Melvin's curiosity satisfied, he's getting ready to jump down off this very slippery, hard plastic pontoon . . .
. . . with unforeseen results.
-- Stay calm, it's only water.
Evening approaches, everyone's off the lake.
The Lake in the Wisconsin Northwoods
Mussent Point is at no. 12.