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.
Early August -- some reasonably good fun, one tragic announcement, and a lot more from the cats on site
Anticipating another day of rollicking fun on the lake, 3 August 2023
Like this: untangling somebody's fishing line from a dead or dying tree
Homing in on Mussent Point after a few hours of pedaling all about at random
This aging iPhone 8 camera has no zoom function, so . . .
. . . we have to keep pedaling, and pedaling some more.
That's the clan's original boathouse, built in 1938 and a proud honoree on the National Register of Historic Places (U.S. Dept of Interior).
The ground floor of the vintage boathouse, with the . . . boats. But upstairs . . .
. . . on the first floor, it's party time. By all accounts, the young people of several generations raised the roof (figuratively) in this capacious venue.
In latter years, some of the then youngest generation may have stretched the accepted behavioral limit, bringing large groups of their friends in for late-night bacchanalia, so that firm rules and permissions for the use of the place had to be laid down.
Even so, though, at least once the police had to be called in, searching the nearby swamps for fugitive partygoers. Nowadays the facility is seldom or never used, though we see here that someone has recently tidied it all up very nicely. There is clearly a lot of family history stacked up in here.
For reasons known only to themselves, the cats prefer sitting on septic covers to sitting on the grass, or as in this case, on an unidentified 'control valve'.
Or, when necessary, on a book
Shoreline patrol -- Cousin Rob is vigilant in his search for chanterelle mushrooms, though so far only a single one has been spotted on the lake this year. Some summers, not so long ago, there were quadrillions.
Now what a close view of the shoreline reveals is largely destruction and decay.
Like this shoreline cemetery of trees ringing the canal's mid-lake
It's a nasty swamp back in there, but we have no explanation for why everything's dead or soon to be so.
Overgrown with propeller-grabbing vegetation -- not even any sun-basking turtles anymore
That nasty mess, adorning the entrance to the second section of the canal, has been there for many years, slightly smaller now but still ugly.
The entrance to the second part of the canal from the mid-lake. We're not risking it again - a few weeks ago we got tangled up in the fallen débris and had to resort to prayer to get ourselves back out again.
Not much hope for this fellow anymore
Back across the mid-lake (otherwise, sometimes called the Mirror Lake), and . . .
. . . out towards Tomahawk Bay on our lake.
The canal was built back in the logging days, ca. 1890-1912 or so, to float logs over from the farther lake to the sawmill at Point o' Pines, but though it never worked out as planned, it was maintained by the town for many years.
In more recent years, however, it's all been let go, the spillway at the far end is in bad shape, and the variety of lifts used to get small boats over it are all long gone.
And so, as is often the case, over the years Mother Swampy reclaims her own.
Only a moron would step off his or her hydrobike (Kristin can attest to how awful an experience that can be . . . and that, be it said, was an accident).
A favorite napping place for the cats, both of whom have outgrown it but don't care.
It's 7:30 am, when the cats are insisting on being let out to romp about, despite never have been let out until 9 am (when the nocturnal predators and potential prey have all gone home, and the dew is off the grass).
It's 9 am.
-- Let's head south.
We're back in the South Shore Bay to revisit the little channel manqué that we tried to drill through to a tiny lagoon behind that isthmus on the right.
From here it all looks like a successful effort, and thanks to Cousin Rob it almost was, but . . .
. . . then we hit the underwater rocks. Lined up like the legions of Achilles' Myrmidons.
So once again, we retreat farther along the shore (and more destruction and . . .
. . . woodpecker devastation).
R. I. P.
6 August 2023 -- on this day our very dear friend Dr (John) Joe Pirri passed away in Switzerland. A collection of photos from his long years of laughing along with us is available here, with more to follow.
-- Choupee! CHOUPEE!! . . .
-- There's no privacy in the shower anymore, eh?!?
Here's a collection of seasonal residents and guests at the dock at Point o' Pines.
Another shoreline patrol, carefully investigating everything.
Especially interesting dead things.
A long dead tree that might soon fall into the lake. Not just now, surely.
A long abandoned dock, and one of the 3 or 4 largest erratic boulders in the lake
Another formidable erratic to be added to our count
The shoreline of what we're calling South Shore Bay (better than 'Indian Bay' as on the map below).
Another choice erratic!! Like a giant stony muffin.
And still another -- a veritable graveyard of huge monuments to the last Glacial Age.
This lake is, in some stretches along the shores, home to many lovely vintage cottages and boathouses, etc., but it's also got its own generous chair of multi-million dollar establishments for the friendly folks, some of whom come up to the lake a few times every summer.
Before that ridiculous governor Scott Walker set about dismantling most of the best regulatory functions of the state government, including the DNR, there were pretty strict guidelines about what can be built along the shoreline, and how close to it. Most of that is gone now, but this comfy residence predates even Scott Walker.
Baby Leigh island
The usual lake wind's backed off today, so it might be a welcome opportunity for even someone not particularly adept at canoe mastery to give it another go.
First, an obligatory jaunt through the overcrowded Frog Bay just beyond our boathouse, and then . . .
. . . a pleasant hustle out to Adjidaumo, the main island, with a view to finding a new route to battle our way up to the top for a close-up look at the venerable eagles' nest, which might or might not presently be occupied.
We beach our craft in the crescent cove along the northeast side of the island, past the long rock bar extending off towards the shore. It's the best beaching place on the island.
So let's have a look . . . it's not promising.
We're scouting along the beach for the most likely access point.
That looks like it. An overgrown obstacle course; we're not best dressed for a scratchy battle like that.
So we retreat with no feelings of regret.
(In fact, a month later we went up by another route and got murderously assaulted whilst tying up the hydrobike by a vicious crowd of hornets, and then had to hand-to-hand our way back down to this very place to avoid confronting the tiny beasts again.)
Melvin appears to be toying with the idea, finally, of joining us for a short cruise on the hydrobike . . .
. . . but, being a very hydrophobic cat . . .
. . . he elects to watch us pedal off into the distance. Poor Melvin.
The Lake in Wisconsin
Mussent Point is at the red dot.
Next up: A rich variety of social events, and more cat pix