Ottertail Country

Ottertail Country
Ottertail South

March 10, 2009

A Friday adventure


Soon as the weather starts turning a little, that's when the pulp truck shows up and drops 12 cords of hard maple pulp wood. Cut by Art Raleigh, delivered by young Joe Chizek, it soon will be turned into fuel for (I hope) about 1.5 years....

I skipped out of work early last Friday (10:00 A.M.) and headed north. I met Dan and Pat Lord at Da Palace and we headed out for Little Pelican Lake, about 12 miles west of 13 on highway 70.
We drove quite a way on an unplowed woods road, but managed to get to the lake without getting stuck.

Ivan grabbed the rope and headed out with the fishing sled.....

A short walk to the lake was through a pleasant little balsam woods.

O.K., we got some holes drilled and cleaned out, Dan got his Vexilar depth finder/locator going. Fishing was slow and the only thing we got were some very small perch.... doh!!!

Seeing as how I was on vacation, I insisted on spending as much time as I could recharging the old batteries.

Ivan worked at getting some fish we could take home and clean, but it was not to be.

I like the lighting in this photo. I took my turn at pulling the sled through the rapidly melting snow. The ice by now was covered by a layer of melt water, and the weather was pleasant.

We arrived back at Da Palace, got rid of the heavy fishing clothes and started thinking about curing the hunger we all had.

Fortunately, it's a short walk to Wintergreen Resort from the palace. And that's what we did, we hoofed it to the resort.

Wintergreen Lake was looking quite wet by the time we got there. Temps up in the 40's and we were loving it.

A good view of Wintergreen.... kind of.

Onlyhow, when we got back to the palace, Greg and Mycal were there, along with Tom and Kyle. We had a really good fish fry (good job, Greg) and even a little BS. I know, that's hard to believe....

We finished off the evening with some Texas Hold'em. Tom's son Kyle won the first one..... and young Mycal won the second. Go figure..

We stayed overnight at the palace, and Saturday morning I left for home. The rest of the crew went fishing again, a few lasted until early afternoon, then they all split for home. Another 'northren' adventure....

I gotta go, Carlo


March 4, 2009

Musical musings.....


Seeing as Peg sold her Phillips house, and we needed to remove all our stuff from there, that necessitated moving the old Hammond organ. This is something that entered my life as a result of participating in Northwoods Players, a local theater group. I got to know Katie's mom because they both did piano accompaniment for the shows and we had a mutual respect for each other. After Katie's mom died, Katie told me that Sarah Jane wanted her Hammond organ to go to me as no family members wanted it. So we hauled it home and I have messed with it on occasion. Last week I packed it up once more for the move.....

Of course Ivan was willing to help and we loaded it into his truck. We had picked a somewhat warm, clear day so we did not need to cover it for the three minute trip to.......

Donna's house! We had talked about having to move the thing, we really didn't have room at the moment, would she like it? Yes!

She seemed really happy to get it, and had cleared a bunch of stuff out of this room to accommodate the Hammond.

A day or two later I showed up with the bench and the foot pedal unit. It's fully functional now and Donna is having fun messing around with it. She has her original book for beginning to learn piano, so we'll see what develops.

I surely enjoy firing the wood boiler after dark. It's fun to open that door to the immense, wild looking bed of coals. It's amazing how long these coals will keep the water warm in the boiler.

Then, no matter how cold the firewood is, you pitch some in and in a minute or two the stuff is ablaze!! We're getting a load of hard maple pulp wood tomorrow for next season's firewood. 12 pulp cords worth.... that's a pile of wood 100" wide, 4 feet high, and 48 feet long. This pile will be cut lengthwise three times yielding a pile of wood 25" wide, 4 feet high and 192 feet long. This should be nearly a two year supply, maybe 1.75 years?

Looks like I will finally have something to do.......

I gotta go, Carlo


March 1, 2009

Bird brains.....


We went pheasant hunting this weekend! Ivan, Greg Barr, Tom Lochner and I accompanied Tucker the Wonder Dog to Milford Hills Hunt Club. This is a private hunting area near Watertown, Wi. As you can see, Greg pays the proper respect to Tucker by trading seats with him every once in a while..... When we left Prentice at 6:45 AM on Saturday, it was -20°!!

We met up with Lee Fisher, our benefactor on this excursion. Lee scheduled the hunt and took care of the arrangements. Lee is Ivan's first cousin and the Fishers and Lords are very much in touch with each other and do lots of hunting and fishing together. By the time we connected with Lee and got to the hunt club, it was +20° but quite windy, so we didn't stand around much.

Here is some typical terrain at the club. Four of us hunted the "North Dakota" field and the other three hunted the "South Dakota" field. Fifteen pheasants were available in each location.

Again, Greg knows that his success depends largely on the working of the 'bird dog'. For without a dog to flush the pheasants, we would have probably not seen a single bird. Sometimes the birds would finally flush less than a foot from the dog.

Here is Mike Lord and one of Pat Kelly's dogs. They were on the South Dakota field.

After covering most of the field areas, we got together to plan how to try to get some strays that had flushed and flown into the swamp areas. Luckily the recent rain water was all ice that day and we could get through the low areas. This did produce a few birds.

When we were all done, we had a total of 31 pheasants, with the South Dakotans doing a little better than us in the north field. Oh, well.....

We got out of hunting clothes and went into the Club house for a while. It is a pretty amazing building, lots of wood and stone, and numerous mounts of all types.

Tired hunters wetting their whistles with a brew or two, which in turn whet our appetites for some pheasant poppers, a bit of meat in a jalapeno pepper wrapped in bacon and grilled.... yum.

This mount was particularly cool, a fox trying to nab a pheasant. This place was really awesome, and worth visiting just to see it.

Stories, stories and more stories....

The second room, a really large dining room, had an elevated area with several large full-body mounts. Impressive.

Lee was also our housing coordinator. That means we ate lasagna, chicken wings, mini-franks in sauce, snacks and beverages at his and Karla's house. Then we slept over night there and left at 6:45 Sunday morning. They were awesome hosts. Thanks......

Tucker the Wonder Dog was pretty mellow on the way home. He is 10 years old and did a ton of bird hunting Saturday, so I guess he was tuckered out ;-) Thanks, Tucker....

I gotta go, Carlo