3/24/15 - A couple of weeks of warm weather have transformed Sawbill from deep winter to an extended spring season. Around here, I've always heard this season referred to as the "crusted snow moon." That is certainly the case at the moment.
Skiing down the Temperance River on crusted snow a few days ago. Right after this picture was taken I saw moose tracks on the river and even the moose was being held up by the crust! Photo by Nickie Dietz.
Here I am with the great group of friends that skied down the Temperance River. Photo by Nickie Dietz.
These warm, early spring days bring out an insect know locally as "snow fleas." They are actually a species of spring tails that jump long distances when they feel threatened. They move so fast, they give the illusion of just disappearing.
Sawbill Lake is like a big open field for Phoebe and Roy this time of year. They love to run joyfully and bark at ravens flying overhead. What looks like slush is actually frozen solid.
3/5/15 - As promised, here are some YouTube clips of my recent television appearance on WDSE's "The PlayList" with my musical partner, Eric Frost.
If you are really interested, here is a link to the whole episode. Eric and I start at about 13:00. Many thanks to Karen Sunderman, Steve Ash and the whole "PlayList" crew for including us in their efforts to highlight the booming music scene up here in little ol' Cook County!
Two other bands from the area will be featured on upcoming episodes. I've played with both of them in the past, so I'll post the links when they become available. - Bill
3/4/15 - You may have seen some recent news reports about a proposed "Sawbill" radio tower. The tower in question is actually located 3.5 miles southeast of Sawbill, near Marsh Lake. It's part of a statewide public safety radio network known as the ARMER network.
The Minnesota Department of Transportation is in charge of building the system and they requested a lease of county land to erect a 330' tower on the site. The Cook County Board of Commissioners voted last week to restrict the tower to be less than 200'. Not only will the lower height make the tower much less visible, but it will not be lighted.
The 330' option would have been visible, both day and night, from many lakes, campsites and portages within the BWCA Wilderness including Alton, Sawbill, Smoke, Burnt and Kelly lakes.
It was gratifying to watch the county commissioners carefully study the issue, listen to their constituents and settle on a solution that everyone can live with. - Bill