We just returned from the Chicago All Canada Sport Show held at Pheasant Run in St. Charles. It was very well attended with guests getting their fishing “fix” by talking about the upcoming fishing season. There were various seminars held giving tips on fishing & hunting and the all important shore lunch dinner featuring walleye. Many guests stopped in to visit with us & to meet the new owners – Darren & Merrilee Bochler. We thoroughly enjoyed our visits with them & know that we’ll miss the many friendly faces at camp. Quite a few show guests talked w/Darren & Jerry about bear hunting this fall & gathered the information needed to make a decision on a hunt. There was also a lot of talk with people interested in a fishing trip this summer. We travel to Milwaukee this Thursday for the last sport show of the season. This show has always been a good show with high attendance & quite a few bookings as a result. Then it is time to put the suitcase away for awhile. Jerry & Ellie
P.S. We are still handling the blog as the transition is made from us to the Bochlers. Lots to do with the change in ownership. We want to keep everyone informed as we finalize the transition.
Many of you have probably heard that we sold the camp just a few days before Christmas to a wonderful family of 6. There will be lots more activity with 4 young girls in camp. They are so excited & we’re excited for them. Of course, we have mixed feelings about leaving since we enjoy so much about being at Cedar Lake Camp. It seemed the time was right to retire & now we’ll have more free time to enjoy our first grandchild who is due on Jan. 20th when we are finishing the Milwaukee All Canada Sport Show. We will be at all the sport shows w/Darren & Merrilee & then spend 6-7 wks at camp giving any advice or answers needed but trying to stay out of their way.
Jerry built the wood display we use at sport shows & it has seen better days after being hauled in & out of the truck for 14 years at various sport shows. It needs a little TLC before we head out on Jan.4th so that is the order of the day for Thursday. Brochures are all ready but we need to make some new signs, etc. We are just like Santa when it gets to be this time of year – we’re making a list and checking it twice. Extra light bulbs, pens, tape, maps, hand sanitizer, etc ???
Hope to see you at the one of the shows we’ll be attending: St. Charles, MO, Pheasant Run in St. Charles, IL & Milwaukee County Sports Complex in Franklin, WI.
When we had the blog added to our website we thought that it would be a good way for guests to find out more about Cedar Lake Camp and what was going on at the time. It didn’t take long before large numbers of junk comments started rolling in which have to be deleted one by one. We were disappointed to see that and were tempted to get rid of the blog since we weren’t receiving many authentic comments. Then guests started arriving at camp and saying how much they enjoyed reading the blog postings and that they checked often, especially right before their trip, to see if anything new had been posted. That settled the issue for us. It seems that half of the enjoyment for guests is the anticipation of the trip and if reading the blog gets folks geared up and ready for their northwoods experience then we’ll certainly continue posting blog updates.
Speaking of updates, it is time to get back to updating our mailing list. We like to have that done so we’re ready for our year end letter around the end of November. Where did the year go?
The early turning of some leaves to a brown/tan color around Cedar Lake led us to believe that we wouldn’t have very good fall color this year. Why some poplar & birch turned early & others didn’t, we don’t have a clue. The remaining trees have become a splash of gold amidst the evergreen trees. We were busy packing on Friday but took time to appreciate the reflection of the trees on the calmest Cedar Lake we had ever seen. After a few pictures it was back to work. Sat morn brought an even calmer lake, if that was possible. The mirror reflection was absolutely perfect. What a treat!
We drove home taking Hwy 502 out of Dryden which isn’t normally much for sightseeing. It was such a feast for the eyes w/each turn around a bend being prettier than the last. The peak fall color seems to be a bit early this year but maybe that is because we had such an early spring. At any rate, we need to enjoy it for the short time we have it.
After a lovely fall day we decided to have one last campfire at Cedar Lake Camp & take in the moon on the lake. We were able to get a lot done toward close down & decided to enjoy our last days of the season with a campfire w/o the obligatory s’mores. The weather made it possible to get some painting done, the last lawn mowing & clothes lines full of blankets, etc. The humming birds are gone as are most of the loons. We miss hearing the haunting loon calls at night. It is such a peaceful & beautiful time of year at camp.
Friday brought cool temps, light rain & afternoon snow. Yes, that’s right. Snow. Not the best weather but the fishing last week was great. Some guests were fishing in the rain off the east dock Thursday eve & caught all kinds of walleye but they were all in the 21″ range. Couldn’t catch keeper walleye. They had a ball. The last guests of the 2012 season left on Sept.22nd with cool temps & light rain. Sat night was clear & beautiful w/the sky full of stars. We knew that would mean heavy frost & sure enough – the roofs & lawn were white on Sunday morn. The day turned into a beautiful fall day w/sun, light breeze & temp around 55. There were flocks of geese flying over Cedar Lake Camp all day. The last count was 8 groups of different sizes. Apparently it was lots colder north of us & they decided that it was time to head south.
We’ve been busy closing down cabins, pulling boats, keeping the washing machine & clothes lines loaded. There is lots to do at season end & we have to check notes making sure we don’t forget something that needs to be done. It seems very strange to be the only ones in camp. Now the deer are back in the area. They seem to know when the last guests leave & show up shortly thereafter. I guess they’re kind of shy.
Our first frost of the season arrived Monday night & we woke up on Tues morn to white roofs & lawn. We had covered many of the flowers so they survived to continue to give us color around camp. Our last cook-out on Tues turned out to be a good one. The sun came out & there was little or no wind so the food stayed warm & guests lingered to visit & tell fish stories. One father/son duo who are primarily fishing for musky were happy to have caught 4 muskys in one day – the biggest being 39″. Walleye are still being caught during the day in about 22′-25′ but around 14′ later in the day. Good fishing for walleye, musky & northern so putting up w/cooler temps brings rewards.
The forecast for the rest of the wk is calling for rain but only about 1/2″. We could use more since the lake level is somewhat down but we’ll take what we can get. Temps continue to be in the 50′s & low 60′s for highs thru the end of the wk according to the weatherman. Flocks of geese continue to fly overhead on their way south. Our hummingbirds decided it was time to leave as well. The original long range forecast had called for a warmer than normal Sept & Oct but so far it appears to be normal or a little below nornal.
Sunday morn dawned clear & cool with fog rolling out of the bays. It was such a pretty sight & let us know that fall is certainly here. Taking a walk on the driveway gives a view of the maple leaves turning orange & underbrush turning burgundy. It won’t be long before those pretty leaves fall so we’ll have to take advantage of the color whenever we can. Most other color around is a drab brown – not the usual gold that we get in the fall. Flocks of honking geese from further north are flying overhead heading to warmer weather.
The temperature of the water has gone down to as low as 61 in some areas of the lake. Guests were catching crappie, perch & walleye in as little as 7 ft of water in Carter Lake at the end of last wk so the fish are moving into more shallow water. This week finds guests catching walleye in as much as 25 ft but also in 14ft of water. We don’t have a full camp this week & neither do any of the other camps on Cedar so it is pretty quiet compared to busier times of the year. It’s a great time to enjoy the northwoods & all the beauty it holds.
The calendar may say that it is still summer but the temps today & the last couple of days make it feel like fall. The high today was around 64 with rain off & on through the day. We may not get a lot of color this fall since many trees are turning brown already. Pretty drab looking. This is awfully early to be losing green color but this has been a strange year from the beginning.
Crappie & perch have been active of late & are being caught in about 11 ft of water. One group of fishermen had to get more bait since they ran out while fishing for them. They also got into some nice walleye which is good since walleye had been slow the first part of the week. Everyone was graphing them but not much interest in taking a bait. Apparently it’s feeding time again.
Reports from guests show a wide range of depth for walleye. Last week & this week many fishermen were catching walleye in 20-25ft of water & one party this week was catching them in as much as 30ft of water. Repeat guests in cabin #6 were fishing at the far end of Peep Hole along a weed line on Wed & caught walleye in 7ft of water. The fishermen were actually going after northern & got into some hard fighting walleye instead. The wind was pretty strong that day from the west & had much to do with their catch in the shallower water.