Final Canoe Repairs of 2010

Above average temps in the fifties today allowed me to do some maintenance on “Lilly,” a cedar strip canoe I built several years back.  She took the 2010 season off while I worked on some fiberglass and epoxy repairs to the turn of the bilge.  I put the first coat of varnish on the hull…

Moose Brains

Today’s Halloween, so here’s a moose brain.  It’s about the size of a grapefruit.  While this post is a lighthearted holiday entry, the brain shown here is undergoing important scientific research that may help people better understand the moose population in Minnesota.  I helped extract this brain from a bull moose harvested up the Echo…

Garrison Keillor, Eat Your Heart Out

Lake Wabegon is Garrison’s fictitious community on the edge of the prairie. It’s full of Norwegian Lutherans and colorful characters. Here in Ely, Minnesota, we live on the edge of the wilderness with plenty of colorful characters, and some Norwegian Lutherans. Today we’re driving south to see the live performance of Garrison’s radio show, A…

Pine Marten Breakdown

I awoke to a Pine Marten peering from an overturned canoe outside my bedroom window this morning.  Then a second one appeared.  Then they loped around the cabin to the deck.  Once on the deck, one of them took up residence in a flower pot, and the other one decided that looked like a fine…

Women in the BWCA Wilderness

I recently guided two all-women’s camping trips. What a blast! Both groups of talented, smart and go-get-em women sought out a female guide for their Boundary Waters camping experience. I have guided canoe trips over ten summers for teenage and adult women in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness and Quetico Provincial Park, working at…

Boundary Waters Autumnal Colors

Fall colors are here! In fact, they are at peak already. If you’ve got the time, head on up to Ely and enjoy the beautiful colors. Here, two photos from recent guided canoe trips. These beautiful light purple flowers really complement the yellows, oranges and red of the autumn woods.

Bluegills in Their Underwater World

We found these extraordinarily curious Bluegills on Hustler Lake in the Boundary Waters. They are called Bluegills thanks to the dot of color you can see on the side of both fish. That blue or black spot is actually an extension of the gill cover. They are excellent fish to eat, and these particular fish…

The Lovely Painted Lady

Greetings from this lovely Painted Lady butterfly living near Wood Lake in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness! This beautiful butterfly may look familiar to you, and for good reason: they are quite common, even around the world. They migrate from Mexico all the way to Canada just below the Arctic circle and are also…