Sunday, October 7, 2007

Micro climate on the South Shore

The weather was perfect at our camp on Reefer Creek this weekend. The temps were in the high 50's, there was a low hanging fog and a north breeze off the lake that kept the temperature down. The fog made the fall colors vibrant and intense.....and I forgot my camera. In my haste to load up Rookie the dog and escape the retail garage sale mania, I forgot both camera bag and wine bag. Not to worry, there was beer in the cooler but it was agonizing to see the fog, the colors and the myriad of mushrooms that had popped out after the rains, just begging to be photographed. I threw on a 'shroom shot from last year but I can only hope that this recent crop is still there next weekend. Recent heavy rains, including the one Friday night, had the river raging. The soil in this area is heavy clay which means aspen, balsam, black spruce, and some oak and maple. We also have some majestic white pine that survived the loggers at the turn of the last century. Reefer Creek is one of the numerous streams and rivers that flows north into Lake Superior. When it rains the river comes up fast and goes down equally fast. The spring floods are legendary since it can be 70F a couple miles inland and 35F at the lake. This means big ice jams at the mouth of these streams acting just like a cork in the bottle. That time of year if you get to cool just head downstream, north to the lake.

Reports from the VOR, who was manning the retail garage, had it in the high 80's and humid in Minneapolis on Saturday. That is most definitely not my kind of weather. I've stated many times that I'll take zero farenheit over 90F any day of the week. I was invigoratingly chilly when I climbed down from my tree stand at dusk on Saturday. When I left the camp Sunday afternoon I drove the two miles up to the lake to check out conditions and there were surfable rollers coming in from the north and the temp was 54F at the mouth of the Iron River. Duluth harbor got up to 60F, the top of the hill in Duluth (one of author Jim Harrison's favorite drives in the country) was 70F, and by the time I reached Minnneapolis 2 hours later at 4pm, it was 84F. Its October for god's sake, this is just plain wrong! In any event we will be heading north again next Friday to enjoy the fall. I'm hoping for a bit of frost

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