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  • March 2012
    from www.CustomCabins.com
    14663 Vosburgh Rd. Ely, Minnesota 55731
    email: info@customcabins.com

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Exactly one year ago today there were of seven inches of snow on the ground. The lakes were frozen solid, the woods were quiet, and the pesky of hum of insects only lingered as a memory or an early sign of ringing in the ears. Skiers, fishermen, and snowmobilers were out catching the last few sparkles of winter before spring crept out from underneath the snow.

    But this year spring didn't creep. Instead it popped into existence. With a warm spell of several consecutive days in the high seventies, it made anyone escaping to warmer climes reconsider the money spent on airline tickets.

    The warm temperatures and a below average snow fall together produced some of the earliest ice out dates in most anyone's memory. Moose Lake began to break up on March 25th and was completely open on the 28th. We, personally, have been keeping Moose Lake records since 2000 and the previous earliest date we have recorded is April 2nd in 2010, and the latest was May 7th in 2008. At that time, we thought we might have to put a very long extension cord on our hair dryer and run it up the lakes to make a path for the boats on the fishing opener.

    The above picture was taken by one of our neighbors (Steve Voiles) and shows how some of the lake had opened, but still there was still a thin layer of ice in some areas that would soon disappear with the winds or with the warm sun. Because of warmer temperatures and still the coolness of the water, a fog formed just above the ice/water and resulted in the above impressive image.

    We then took a similar picture from the lodge down about 200 feet to the lake and the perspective of the density of the fog and the serious beginning of ice out.

    Judd's creek, which is the creek you drive over in the valley on the way to Custom Cabins, was one of the first creeks in our area to open up. One can clearly see the creek is completely open, but the banks still have the distinctive signs of the fall grass.

    The early thaw has also put a head-start on many of signs of spring that we usually don't see until much later in April or even early May. We have already heard the drumming of male grouse in search of their special "sweetie". One of our neighbors was lucky enough to catch a male and a female spruce grouse going about some of their mating rituals. These grouse are generally smaller than the average ruffed grouse and have slightly brighter plumage, especially when aroused.

     

    With this year's early retreat of the snow, gardeners haven't had to watch for their bulbs and perennials to come poking up through any white stuff. If the warm weather persists, the rhubarb that has started to sprout might end up in a pie far sooner than expected.

    In the woods, though, the popple and quaking aspen have already started to show buds along with one of the telltale harbingers of spring- pussy willows.

    The early signs of spring have gone, but we already have begun to anticipate the arrival of summer. It's never too late to make your reservations and to even start daydreaming about the big fish to come.

    Custom Cabin Rentals
    14663 Vosburgh Rd.
    Ely, Minnesota 55731
    218-365-6947 or 1-800-235-6947

    www.CustomCabins.com