Archive for May, 2011

So, How’s the Fishing?

May 30, 2011

Hello and welcome back.  On this Memorial Day, we’d like to take time to remember our dads who both fought in WWII as well as our dear friend Rick back in Iowa.  Thank you.

Last week’s fishing was good!  It started a bit slow for some but picked up as the week continued.  Our big group from Green Bay reported catching 500+ walleye, large numbers of smallmouth over 18″, lots of piggy perch and over 30 northern greater than 30″!  They had three northern greater than 40″!  Any fish that qualified for my Conservation Awards Program will be posted on our website later this week:  www.tallpinescamp.com 

Here are a couple of teaser perch photos from Corey:

Four guys brought in 108 one afternoon!

John and Marie are still here.  I hear tales of a 26″ walleye, a 36″ northern, and various smallmouth and perch that also qualify for an award.  They are the only guests who have qualified for an award every year since I started the program!  This will be their 7th consecutive year!  Congratulations you two!  Their photos won’t be posted until their departure–we like to get all their photos at once.  Also, they will be celebrating their 40th wedding anniversary on June 5–that’s almost as good as releasing a big fish;)  The best news is that I have managed to positively influence Marie’s life in an all-new way:

I am honestly suffering shoe-toe envy.

 Aren’t they gorgeous!  The matching effect was almost more than I could take!  I did whip out a new pair of flip-flops for Saturday’s check-in:

Eldon and Sandra were their usual fun and adventuresome selves!  They got into some perch, northerns and whitefish:

Sandra caught the most but Eldon's was pretty darned big!

Today (Monday) is Sandra’s birthday!  Happy Birthday, Girlfriend!  She and I went on our annual moose stomping adventure.  We ran across our usual variety of poop: moose, deer…

definitely wolf...

don't even wanna' know whose this is...

Here was a beautiful area:

Hey, what are those things I see...BLUEBERRY blossoms!

I found a great deer head with antlers and presented it to Sandra for her birthday!  She was ecstatic:)

I would be going moose stomping again next week with Rachel V.  However, she’s going to have a baby boy soon and thought she should forego this year’s trip to Canada.  I never dreamed I’d take a back seat to something so minor as giving birth;)  I know she’ll be here in spirit, though!

I mentioned our Green Bay group earlier.  They had their usual week of fantastic fishing for opener.  They spent the bulk of their time in Gawley’s Bay, 5th Lake and Ruby Lake, but also hit other favorite spots of theirs along the way.  Matt and Justin are two young men who will be celebrating their 5th consecutive year of our Conservation Awards Program.  See their big fish photos on our website later this week.  In the meantime, here are some other pictures they chose to share with us:

Until next year, guys!

 

Matt's younger brother Kevin caught this 34"er.

 

Gotta' keep those younger brothers humble.

Jaws, Canadian style

They said they caught a zillion of these!

Apparently it's been a long, lonely week for Justin!

We've already had many beautiful days like this.

I love this shadow photo.

Season 8 Begins

May 22, 2011

Happy Sunday!

Yesterday was our official opener.  Eldon, Sandra, and Wilma arrived Thursday to just hang out, relax, and give Gruper some grief!  He lost a bet with Sandra and has to wear a Minnesota Vikings shirt all week!  John and Marie hit the campground on Friday, and our big group from the Green Bay area arrived Friday night. 

Let the season begin!

With the return of the season comes some familiar faces…some desirable, others not so desirable.

Eldon assumed his position in the tree above Cabin 4 on Wednesday.  We hadn’t seen him before and we haven’t seen him since(?)  I think he just wanted to make sure things were going OK and he’ll soon be back into his routine.

The northerns have been in their dockside feeding hole for a few days.  No pic (yet).

This little rascal…

"Who, me?"

Yes, you…has been raiding our duck houses.  He’s wearing a collar, so we wonder if he’s being tracked by the MNR?

You can kind of see the collar in this pic.

This morning there was a broken egg outside that duck house.  Right after I took the picture of the egg, Steve said a duck flew into the house.  Hopefully she still has something to sit on in there.

Our deer on the driveway were apparently wandering clear up by Cabins 9 and 10.

The weather’s been cooler this week.  We had a lot of rain yesterday.  Today started out cloudy and cool but ended up quite warm and sunny.  The rhubarb has grown by leaps and bounds.  We’ll try it this year and see if it’s ready. 

Fishing yesterday produced a variety of results.  Sandra caught a bunch of whitefish!  She was also getting plucked a lot, probably by perch.  Eldon got into the northerns.  John and Marie caught walleye, perch, and smallmouth.  Gruper caught three nice perch, a smallmouth and a good northern.  Max and I had a perch omelet for breakfast today; Gruper had bacon;)  One of our Green Bay guys released a 45″ northern!  Watch for that on the website.  Maybe I’ll post here as well(?)  Max caught a couple of 20″ northerns earlier in the week.  He kept them because he wants to become an expert Y-boner.  He determined these to be too small:

I’ll close with a super sunset!  Talk to you next Sunday if not sooner.  Have a great week!

Almost Show Time

May 16, 2011

Hi again.  Well, we’re within a week of opener.  The pace has definitely picked up around here this week.  The guys put the docks in on Tuesday.  I’ve been a cabin-cleaning fool (at least half right, eh).  It’s one of my least favorite jobs but has to get done.  If cleanliness really is next to Godliness, I’m sitting pretty good right now;)  Here’s a sure sign of a nearing opener:

That old Toyota is the first thing to get up and running every year.  It must have nine lives!  Speaking of which…remember in last week’s post…Stinky LaRue’s driver’s side hip was totally out of whack?  Well, I got up Monday morning to feed her and she came striding–all normal and all–up to me as if nothing had been wrong!!!!  No kidding.  I cancelled her vet appointment.  I think she’s walking better than before it was out of place.  She has had a slight limp for years as she apparently took some shrapnel (a pellet is lodged in her hip) before I found her a zillion years ago.  What a survivor she is.  We should call her Timex…

She followed me all around this evening:)

Anyway, I digress.  The guys have been very, very busy.  Max is a quick learner and very eager to work.  Yes, he’s still here!  I think he may stay all season;)  They put a new floor in Cabin 3:

They painted the fish-cleaning facility’s floor with a funky paint of some kind:

Yes, that's sunshine coming in the door!!!

They finished the walkway and put some new steps going onto the second dock:

See that bird on the very end of the dock?  I was trying to figure out what it was.  Finally, I consulted our bird book and the resident expert, ole’ Gruper.  He quickly pointed out that the mate to that golden eye was floating nearby.  We got very quiet and could hear the male calling to the female–it was cool.  He made a clicking type noise and tipped his head back.  She, of course, seemed to ignore him…

That's him...way over on the left.

My point is this:  imagine it being so still that you can hear a duck talking.  That peacefulness is so rare, and we get to experience it.  I need those gentle reminders each year…

We took a drive this afternoon as well.  The weather is unbelievably gorgeous!  Granted, we had flurries Friday; however, yesterday and today have been beautiful and tomorrow’s supposed to hit 70!  On our drive we encountered this young fella’:

probably a yearling, definitely a bull (see his spikes?)

In the driveway we spotted a grouse.  We’ve been seeing them quite a bit.  Steve saw some contemplating a fling yesterday–right near the driveway!

Max has been taking photos around Camp as well.  He saw this out his cabin window:

and he watched this mature eagle for a couple of days:

Wish us luck!  We’ll be officially under way in less than a week.  Stay tuned…

Happy Mother’s Day

May 8, 2011

to all you mothers out there!  I don’t have a lot to say but thought I’d better do an entry or bear the wrath of some frequent readers.

Max has survived his first week with us.  He and Steve have been busy all week.   They’ve waited patiently for the ice to clear this week.  It was 100% off our part of the lake yesterday.  Now they can wait for a just-right day and put the docks into place and begin getting boats ready.  Here’s a look at the ice’s progress:

This was Tuesday-ish. Of course the reflections caught my eye.

 

It was still more solid (not hard, but whole) in the distance.

Here’s a sunset where you can see the ice still in the distance:

By the way, that snow that began while I did last week’s entry…did stick.  Here’s how things looked the evening of May 1:

MAY 1!!!!!!!

 Despite the snow, there are signs of spring’s arrival:

John and Sonny--taste treats ahead!

While the guys busy themselves around Camp, I’ve been spring-cleaning cabins.  It is hard work!  I dropped a box springs on my big toe yesterday (I called the box spring a lot of not-nice names):

Steve has a multi-colored bruise on his forearm and can’t figure out how/where he got it.  It looks like one that you’d remember!  Neither of us is complaining much, though, ’cause our other family member has bigger problems.  Stinky LaRue has a dislocated hip!  She was fine Friday morning but had a hitch in her giddyup by Friday evening.  She is not in pain, just inconvenienced.  She lets me move it all over and asks me to give her a lift after she’s walked a while.  We still play–just more carefully.  We’ll visit the doctor in Dryden on Tues. and get it put back.  I can’t imagine how she did it(?) 

Well, I want to watch the President’s interview on 60 Minutes.  I’m very excited about this week’s events. 

I do need to do a sad shout-out to my friend Rose.  We were expecting Rose to visit last Sunday.  I had made up her bed and was ready to have a drink with her.  However, Rose died Saturday evening.  We got word Sunday after I’d done our entry.  It was very sad.  We met Rose three years ago and became fast friends!  Mike Quigley, who worked for us at that time, fondly referred to her as “Mrs. Magoo.”  That was very fitting, and even Rose would agree.  We’ll miss her a bunch.  She enjoyed tall Luckys, country music, and keeping her hands busy.  She was my first true, full-on Canadian friend.  She’d call during the off-season just to say “hey.”  Steve will very much miss what I called “heart attack chicken,” a dish she delighted in preparing for him.  Rest easy, Rose:)

Happy New Year!

May 1, 2011

OK, already!  I’ve heard from several people that it’s time to start blogging again.  May 1 seems like a good time to start up again for the 2011 season.  Thanks for your patience (as well as your impatience).  Welcome back.

We arrived at Camp Friday evening.  It was actually quite beautiful–close to 60 and sunny.  I saw a moose on my way up 105.  She looked very round and I suspect she’s pregnant.  Steve saw two moose and a grouse.  I pulled my trailer without incident. 

My sister is laughing out loud as she reads this ’cause she knows how much I LOVE pulling that trailer.  I tried to kill it on my way back to Iowa last fall, literally pulling in the driveway with sparks flying, etc.  I’ll be darned if it isn’t all well again:(  Anyway, did you see what I saw in that picture?  Sure, there’s snow but we’ll get to that later.  Here, look again:

there...on the right

 Who’s that????

Stinky LaRue!
Some of you may remember that she was diagnosed with congestive heart failure last August.  She was gravely ill.  I wouldn’t have given you a nickel that she’d make it to winter–even with her twice-daily pills.  Not only did she survive the winter, she made it clear that she wanted to see Canada again.  She has gotten perkier and perkier over the last couple of weeks.  When we arrived at Camp, she was climbing on the trailer (trying to help me kill it again no doubt) and walking about like a youngster!  She is so good:)  Our Iowa vet said to keep doing whatever we’re going ’cause he can’t believe she’s alive.  My girl is so good:)
 
So, the good weather ended when we arrived.  It rained and was cold all day yesterday.  Today we’ve had much the same and even got a bit of snow.
 
 
We still had some patches in the driveway but I figured it was all done.  Granted, today’s won’t stick but it’s quite cold and very windy.  Days like these make me nuts. 
 
The thaw is well under way.  We have a huge hole from the falls to the front of Camp.  Ducks are enjoying the big hole.  We watched an eagle try to get a merganser just a bit ago.  Nasty.  Here’s the hole:
 

There will be no problem making this year’s late opener.  It’s nice not to be worrying ’bout that.  Steve can wait patiently for the ice to clear, then grab his helper and put the docks in.  What’s that???  Did I say helper? 

Meet Max!  Today is his official starting day.  He comes to us from way, way east in Sudbury.  He has a buddy who works at a camp on Perrault Lake, so he knows what he’s getting into!  He’s a right friendly guy who looks forward to meeting our guests and working hard.  He may offer an evening fish-cleaning service as well!

OK, folks, that’s about it for Camp news.  I’ll share a few winter photos with you.  We vacationed in Puerto Vallarta but I’m not sure where the photos are(?)  I did a lot of substitute teaching and even took one five-week assignment of 27 third graders!  I was a tired teacher.  It’s just plain hard work.  Luckily I had a nice group and we had a good time together. 

Stinky and I were goofing around with some antlers and the camera just before Christmas:

Isn't she adorable!

 

She insisted on taking my photo as well.

 

Kayla wore them to visit Santa.

 

She chose a ladybug hat for hanging with the Easter Bunny.

 I got to spend a bit of time with those two babies that joined our family last summer.  They are incredible:)

Two of the happiest babies I've ever met!

 Well, spring cleaning of cabins starts tomorrow.  I need to make sure I’ve got things in order.  I’ll carry my camera around and get you some good spring fodder.  It’s supposed to be nicer weather-wise starting tomorrow so I’ll venture out more.  Thanks for coming back.