Ottertail Country

Ottertail Country
Ottertail South

October 26, 2009

A weather time of year.....


Wow, has this been one dreary month so far!! The long range forecast doesn't appear to offer much relief, either. Maybe sun tomorrow. In any case, I haven't been out and about much lately, hence not much new on the photographic end of things. Below are a series of photos of an airport in Portugal. Don't know if they are real or not, but who knows, anything is possible these days......

Beachfront property, no less. The runway is too far from the water for high diving.

Parking underneath......

Sunday afternoon I was outside to fire the boiler and I found this lethargic little snake in the old shed. I'm thinking it is a small pine snake, although the color is a bit strange. Do they take on the color of their surroundings?

It was curled up to strike, but it was moving pretty slowly. Note the neat marking on it's head (enlarge this one).

I was online looking at video recording equipment, and one of the items I was looking for was an external microphone for a camcorder. One of the search pages yielded a page with this video on it. I don't know if it is for real or not, but if not, he still gets and A+ for expert fake playing.

So that about wraps it up for this week. I may be off work next week to bow hunt during the rutting season. I hope the weather gets a little drier by then. One hunting clothes manufacturer insists that there is no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothes. That may be true, but I like to see the sun once in a while....

I gotta go, Carlo


October 18, 2009

We're visited by snow and Lucy!!


A couple of weeks ago Peggy's cousins from Continental, Ohio, drove up to Phillips to visit Aunt Donna and cousins. Here is Peggy with Michele. When we did our motorcycle adventure to Connecticut, we stopped in Continental to visit Michele and Steve.

Here is Steve, Michele, Peggy and Donna. We also visited their cabin near the Michigan/Ohio border on our way back up from Muncie, Indiana. These are good people and always fun to be around!!!

A week ago last Saturday, we got our first snow. A little early, and it stuck around for a few days on the North side of the house. Leaves were still pretty colorful when this happened.

Then on Monday last, we got an official snow! About 3 inches of the stuff, but it only lasted about two days and then it was melted.

Even though we had some sunny weather after the snow, it only got into the mid 30's for daytime highs. That Monday was the day Lucy and her sister Muriel were to drive to our house from Mary and John's in Marinette, but they put it off for a day because of the bad weather.

Looks pretty official, if you ask me.

We coerced Lucy into making Swedish pancakes on Tuesday evening. I paid close attention, did the batter mixing, watched the technique and now I am officially able to make and serve these tasty things. A new offering at the Ottertail Lodge??? Hey, Greg, I'll make some for you if you show up......

Yeah, this is the real deal.

And guess what? Peggy made some apple pies!!
Lucy and Muriel went on Wednesday to visit Russell Mattson in the morning, then to Lillian Dickinson's after that. While there, Muriel fell ill with extreme dizziness and upset stomach. She ended up in Medford Hospital with an inner ear problem, but things improved and she is O.K. now.

So that evening we had our dinner sans Muriel. Rosie was in the area so she cashed in on the dinner of Canadian walleye fillets done in a beer batter containing Molson (a first rate Canadian beer), baked potatoes, salad, and pie for desert.

Oh, that fish was yummy!!

On Thursday, I got out of work early, went to the grocery and got ingredients for a spaghetti supper. Lucy had invited her friends, Mary and Nancy, to visit and Norm had come up to pick up Muriel's bags, so he joined us for dinner.

Lucy left for Milwaukee on Friday morning. I decided to go to work a little late, and Ma and I had coffee and breakfast together. It was really nice to have her here......


October 14, 2009

Grand Island Adventure


Hey, we have received a guest article from a loyal reader, Yram.... thanks a bunch! By the way, Yram, the map image you sent I could not get work, so I pasted in an image from Google Earth. You need to double click that one, it's beautiful.

John and I decided to go on adventure a couple weeks ago mostly because the weather and wind forecast was favorable. We chose Grand Island near Pictured Rocks because that spot is only about 2 hours from Marinette and the scenery is fabulous.

We arrived in Munising and inflated, loaded, and prepared for sail (metaphorical) in our Zodiac at a small harbor where kayaks put in and the ferry for Grand Island loads and off loads. It was a beautifully warm and sunny day and the water was calm. Great zodiac boating day!

We motored to Trout Bay which is the big bay on the NE side of the island. There is a very small and private campsite (private meaning the only campsite in that area) about half way down the bay that is used mostly by kayakers and ZODIACS! It is first come first serve. We pulled up on the cobble beach and made camp. Making camp was not as easy as it sounds…had to climb a steep bank and use a park service installed rope for added support!

Needless to say, no pain no gain. Just look at the view we were rewarded with from the rocky shelf on which we spent most of our time. Just delightful.

We spent a wonderful day and night at this premier campsite just a couple hours from home thanks to our faithful Zodiac. That boat has seen some water! Not sure how long it is for the world of buoyancy.

Sunday morning we decided to take the long way back to the mainland and went west and south to circumnavigate the island. The views on the north side of the island are just amazing. The beach by the lighthouse is one of the best I have seen outside of California.

Hit a nasty chop on the west and southwest sides. Nasty and uncomfortable although not life threatening…just bumpy! Not so nice for OLD people.

One more shot of the big Gitch and if you look closely, you can see John in the middle of the picture and under the cliff. He took a couple jumps off the cliffs! Water was cold but tolerable. He is a maniac!

Saw this bit of very odd Americana on our way home. Hmmmmm….??

And once home saw this Kingfisher sitting on the neighbors mast.


October 12, 2009

Color Tour


I thought I had better put these on here ASAP, as now the scenery is mostly covered in new, bright white snow!! I'll hold those pics a while...... so here is a little tour around the Ottertail area, showing the woods in unabashed grandeur.

The morning sky is occasionally brilliant red, as was the case last week. Finally, a reason to get up before sunrise....

A couple of upcoming posts will include the "Grand Island Adventure" from Yram and maybe some photos of that wonderful snow!!

I gotta go, Carlo


October 5, 2009

Apples 'n wheelers.....


A few weeks earlier, I did the annual apple harvest. For weeks serveral apples a day had dropped, we picked up some, the deer ate the rest. One day I decided to pick the rest, so I got the ladders and shoulder bags out and picked what I could reach.

I picked alot of them while I was standing on the shed roof. This was about two weeks ago, the sun was hot enough to warrent my big brimmed hat, but turned out too warm to wear it!!

I ended up with four grocery bags nearly full, and a couple of shoulder bags nearly full. Peggy spent evenings for about a week peeling and coring apples and getting them into the freezer. I helped some, but not too much......

Peggy made some apple crisp treats for me to take to work on my birthday, and of course, some apples.........

Turned into pies!! I just finished one this afternoon. I love September.......

Did I mention that I got a "new to me" truck? My 1994 Ranger just was getting to repair dependant lately. When you start spending more on repairs than a loan payment would be, it's time to get a different vehicle..... so I moved all the way up to a 2003 Ranger. On my birthday, we had stopped for a while at the Boondocks in Prentice. Ivan was there, Trina from work and Peggy and I. We had a couple of celebratory bevvies, a lot of smart (term used loosely) talk and we left for home at about 7:00. Soon after we arrived home, Peg asked for some help in the garage.... I thought "what in the world is she doing out there at this time of night?"

When I got out there, here was a new four wheeler!! I had been talking about getting a new 'used' one lately. The old one is quite worn out but still runs pretty well, two wheel drive. When I got the loan for the truck I added on an amount to get a used machine. Well here was this new one which Peg had arranged to get with Ivan's help. Ivan brought it down earlier in the day while I was at work.... so I got a new four wheeler for my birthday at half price....

Admiring her handywork. I had no clue this was going on..... thanks about 2 million, Peggy!!!

The next day, these two clowns showed up!! Just kidding, not clowns. Greg brought me a set of wheeler riding goggles for my birthday. Ivan's two month old wheeler is identical to mine, except it's green instead of black.

So here we have both Rangers. The white one will be visiting a salvage yard soon..... and not coming back. So much rust on everything underneath, and major components continuing to drain my bank account with no positive results. This newer one is a four cylinder Mazda engine, with a 5 speed manual tranny. It should get pretty good mileage, not as good as a small car, but that's a trade-off we decided to make to have a little hauling capability. As you can see, that new wheeler just fits in the back.....

I gotta go, Carlo