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Phone: (218)663-7150
Fax: (218)663-7980
Mail: 4620 Sawbill Trail
Box 2129
Tofte, MN 55615

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Sawbill Newsletter Archives: March 2009
Current Sawbill Newsletter | « February 2009 | April 2009 »

3/28/09 - Our phones are working again. Many thanks to the crews down in Lutsen who worked to get everyone back to normal after the ice storm.

3/25/09 - Our phones are still out and may be out for awhile yet. Lake Superior's north shore, where our radio telephone base stations are located, was hard hit be the ice storm and high winds. There are many power outages, which causes our radios to stop working. We have our name on the list for service, but between all the power outages, continuing bad weather and the pending flooding in northwestern Minnesota, the repair crews are pretty stressed.

Our internet service is working fine, so send us an email if you want to get in touch.

3/24/09 - Ice storm! It has been raining for the last 24 hours in northeastern Minnesota while the temperatures have been hovering right around freezing. We've been relatively lucky here at Sawbill with only about a half inch of ice on everything. Some nearby communities are struggling with fallen trees and power lines.

By the way, our phone service is out today, due to widespread power outages on the North Shore where our radio phone base stations are located. Our internet service, which is via satellite dish, is still working, so for the next day or so send us an email if you need to get in touch. - Bill

Every twig, branch and blade of grass is coated with ice. There is a constant, musical sound outside as the wind tosses the ice covered tree tops.

solar panels3_24_09.jpg
One of our solar power arrays shows off its new ice jacket.

The headlight on the snowplow.

We are using ski poles just to get around the property safely!

3/22/09 - After a week of warm daytime temperatures and freezing nights, the lakes are gradually getting in shape for ski skating. - Bill

Alton Lake just before sunset.

Casting a long shadow on the Sawbill side of the Alton/Sawbill portage.

This cool little sign appeared awhile ago on the bulletin board at the Sawbill canoe landing. It is the Ojibwe language and my wild guess at the translation is "Yes, we are here again! (signed) Bird." I could be completely wrong, of course. I didn't disturb it, but I assume the little red satchel is the traditional tobacco offering.

3/14/09 - The Forest Service has been working this week to haul heavy planks deep into the wilderness. They are using dog teams to deliver the planks to portages that need boardwalks to protect wet sections of trail. The dog team is contracted from a local musher who was busy on the famous Iditarod trail at time last year. The musher told me that she had delivered a load of planks to the portage between Kelly and Jack Lakes. - Bill

Tired dogs looking forward to getting into their cozy boxes after a beautiful day on the trail.

3/13/09 - Ed's poem below spurred Jim Clayton, from Iowa City, to send this interesting web link: We are enjoying what may well be the last day of true winter for this season before an extended warm spell sets in. There is not a cloud in the blue sky with 36" of fluffy white snow on the ground. A crisp west wind bites the face and the chickadees are swarming the bird feeder. Hummingbirds would not like it here right now. But, they are on their way - no doubt! - Bill

3/12/09 - Here is the latest from Sawbill's poet laureate, Ed Dallas:

snow covered backyard
somewhere a hummingbird
begins the journey

3/11/09 - Well, the big storm was a little disappointing. We only received 9.5" of snow instead of the forecast 16". Still, it was a decent snowstorm with seriously cold March temperatures following. - Bill

33" of snow on the ground right now with temperatures hovering between 0 and -13 degrees. Winter fun!

3/10/09 - Storm! We are just starting a classic northern Minnesota March blizzard. The National Weather Service is predicting 16" of snow with high winds. At times, the snow is supposed to fall at a rate of 2" per hour. We love blizzards. The batteries are charged and the wood room is full. It's a good feeling. - Bill

Here is the picnic table in front of the store just as the storm began this afternoon. As you can see, there was plenty of snow on the ground to start with. I'll post another picture after the storm.

Current Sawbill Newsletter | « February 2009 | April 2009 »

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