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.
A few slightly exciting events, and the cats again
Melvin's favorite pose and venue in the predawn hours
Fishermen in small boats throng onto the lake at sunup, 21 July 2023 (and every day).
Sun's up, time to plan the day's agenda
Another hydrobike expedition (like almost-literally every day), this one past the bridge into the South Bay . . .
. . . peeking into the hidden niches and mini-coves (hydrobike traps)
Close-up: the point of Mussent Point
Close-up: the tail of Tigertail (with its sadly undercut shoreline)
There's a new eagle's nest on the Tigertail, overlooking South Shore Bay [awkwardly called 'Indian Bay' below],
25 July 2023
The Mussent Point FunShip arrives to join the Fun.
Brief conversations ensue (eagles' nest, new babies, and what not).
Eventually, though, we must begin our long pedal home.
The FunShip remains behind, later fails to start, and has to be towed home by a skiboat.
The canoe is poised for convenient use, 'sooner rather than later' . . .
. . . in an exploration of Frog Bay, in fact (27 July 2023)
Frog Bay is the little overgrown swampy thing nestled swampily between Mussent Point and the next door neighbors to the north.
Canoes rule here -- hydrobike propellers would be disabled three feet into the green stuff, all wrapped up in lilypad stems.
With a frisson of dread, we realize that we've run out of floaty room and are effectively grounded. (Walking out is a nonstarter, yuck.)
The canoe paddle must be put to better use, poling us off whatever's grabbed at us from below.
We're free at last and paddling madly out of here.
Back to more or less open water, and the skeletal tree that met its undignified end some years ago, as seen here . . .
The fateful day, 23 August 2010, when this was all (at that time) dry land
Free at last! What further adventures await us?
Next, the northwest cove (between cottages 13 & 14 on the map), which is sadly . . .
. . . more and more vegetatively choked up every year.
-- Oh look, some fool left a drawer half open!
Don't get stuck in there.
Joellen's birthday do
The high point of the season's social calendar, 27 July every year
Two wee young fellows swell the invitation list this year.
-- Make a wish!
At 7 a.m. every morning, the cats line up at the door to be let out (promptly at 9 a.m. every morning).
We're sneaking all round the home of some good friends on a nearby lake.
It's an extremely nice house and location, with fine views of the lake . . .
. . . but our friends happen presently to be absent. We're really here, to be honest . . .
. . . because we've heard that the mushrooms are proliferating here -- despite having not yet appeared anywhere on our lake.
Whilst Kristin pokes about in the forest for mushrooms, the rest of our party will just quietly admire the location . . .
. . . and the view of the lake.
A good old traditional well, but surely, that's potentially a death trap.
Oh, that's all right then.
There were, by the way, no mushrooms to be found here at all.
Wave-boat freaks aren't normally too considerate of our shorelines.
So . . . double security -- haul it up onto the land, and tie it up anyway.
The return of Oscar
Oscar and Cathy have returned to the lake from Chicago, for three weeks this time, and we need to produce another hydrobike tout de suite.
Luckily, here's one up on blocks.
Checking out the present state of the thing, and . . .
. . . making some personalized adjustments. Never entirely easy.
So they're off (the cameraperson trailing along behind).
Enthusiastic hydrobikers are voting on where we'll be pedaling to today. There are not a great lot of options.
Tomatoes are finally coming in, we're told. The patriotic flag's still hanging on valiantly up there.
One can never predict when the god Morpheus will overtake a cat. Imagine the dreams.
There are two huge black dogs visiting at the other end of the property, and Choupette remains alert at this end.
Another fine day. No crasher-boomer thunder claps today, nor the clatter of hailstones on the car's roof.
We've just discovered one of Melvin's hideouts behind the woodshed. He's taken lately to behaving admirably all day, but going to ground when it's time to come in. The other night, we gave up hunting the grounds at 11:30 p.m., and he was waiting on the back porch at dawn, shivering a little.
In the meantime, this has become temporarily his favorite crashing site when he's properly inside of an evening.
The little cove adventure
Gazing at the new eagles' nest, for no real reason -- they're either all asleep in there, or all out hunting for dead fish on the lake.
We're back into the little cove on the southern side of the Tigertail, along the northwestern shore of South Shore Bay.
There's a deadend swampy thing back behind this mini-isthmus, and we've been listlessly trying over the past few summers to force a way to pedal the hydrobikes in there for exciting explorations.
Cousin Rob is our designated lead on this project, and already he's hauled out a great lot of the dying and dead tag alders (Alnus serrulata) still hanging on by their roots since the water level rose a few years ago.
Cousin Rob even carries a pointy stick hanging off his bike frame for battering the poor things with . . .
. . . but the water surface finally appears to present a clear way in.
The problem now, however, is big rocks in the channel.
Another member of our party has decided to cut out the 'middleman', as it were, and climb over à pied.
It's hard to imagine why this has been our goal for so long.
It's frankly disgusting, to be honest (spoken as a former propagandist for wetlands).
And it appears to be about an inch and a half deep anyway.
Bag it. Let's get out of here.
Amongst some sizable rocks, here's another considered look of surrender.
Let's go somewhere else, and not come back.
Another day ends with Choupette settled into her happy catball sleep pose.
The Lake in Wisconsin
Mussent Point is at the red dot.
Next up: Early August -- some reasonably good fun, one tragic announcement, and
lot more from the cats on site