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Sunset on Sag 4/4/04

Mark Ceminsy

 

   

   

Weather Report

April has arrived on the Gunflint Trail and with it are nice warm days with temperatrures in the 40's and 50's and nighttime lows in the high 20's.  The days are bright and sunny and the evenings are cool and clear.  March ended with a stretch of warm weather in the 40's and up into the 50's with very little snow or rain.  The rain we did get combined with temperatures in the 50's did it in for us winter enthusiasts.  There is still snow on the ground and up to 2 1/2 feet of ice on most lakes, but the ski trails and snowmobile trails are done for the year. It is now time to store away the snowshoes and cross-country skis until next year and get out the lifevests and fishing poles to prepare for summer!

 

              

Bald Eagle

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wildlife

Bald Eagle(haliaeetus leucocephalus)-  The bald eagles have returned to the Gunflint Trail!  The eagles leave our area when winter arrives and return when the lakes and streams start to thaw.  In Duluth, Minnesota last week they counted over 500 bald eagles flying north through the sky.  Our pair of eagles who nest just a mile from Voyageur are back at their nest.  Their nest is a huge compilation of sticks and twigs over 4 feet in size near the top of a pine tree.  They return to this nest year after year to have their young.  Most eagles will lay 1-3 eggs each spring but it isn't uncommon for the larger of the eaglets to eat the smaller ones once they have hatched.  This combined with the fact that 40 % of young eaglets do not survive their first flight do not make being an eaglet a very appealing prospect.  Once the eaglet does survive it can expect to live between 20-30 years and divorce is not common since they usually mate for life.  The male eagles get to be around 8-9 pounds in size and females up to 14 pounds with a wingspread of 6-7 feet.  The "threatened" bald eagle thrives in Minnesota and Wisconsin where the largest population of nesting bald eagles in the United States reside besides Alaska.  The Superior National Forest is home to many eagles and almost all of our guests to the Boundary Waters and Gunflint Trail will see this majestic bird soaring through the wilderness sky.  To learn more about our national bird you can check out this website.

 

     

Sue's 10 inches of Hair

 

 

 

What's New?

Is this the tail of some wilderness creature?  No, it is the tale of Sue's haircut.  For the past year Sue has been growing her hair out so she could have 10" to spare for an organization called Locks for Love.  This organization uses donated hair to make wigs for children who are unable to grow their own hair.  It is a worthy cause and if you have some extra hair to give then visit their website to see how you can help out.

Maybe you don't have any hair to give for Locks for Love but are in the giving mood?  Then you can help end the devestating effects of MS by donating money to the MS Society.  Sue will be joining hundreds of other walkers on May 2nd to participate in the annual MS Walk.  She and her teammates will walk 10 miles and will raise awareness and money for this good cause.  If you would like to make a pledge then be sure to go to the MS website.  You can click on the e pledge icon that has a heart by it and enter Sue's information; last name Prom, first name Susan, team name SAGE, participating in Minnesota.  On behalf of the MS Society we really appreciate your support.

 

      

 

      

Grumman Solo

 

 

 

 

 

Product Review 

Grumman 129 Solo Canoe - This is a new aluminum canoe made by Grumman.  It weighs 44 pounds and is only 12' 9"  in length.  Since it is so short and wide it is a very stable canoe and would be perfect for fishing out of.  We would generally not recommend a canoe this short for tripping in the BWCA as it would not travel very quickly, but if you are interested in fishing or exploring rivers or small lakes by yourself, then it may be a good choice for you.

Happy Baking to Dan Meer who was the winner of last newsletter's Outback Oven by By Backpacker's Pantry! 

 

 

 

Voyageur Canoe Outfitters

"Where the Trail Ends Your Voyage Begins"
Mike and Sue Prom
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May Specials

 

 

Skills

Surviving a Cold Water Submersion-An unfortunate accident took the life of a snowmobiler on Saganaga on March 23rd.  He was not familiar with the lake and was travelling in the dark when he broke through thin ice in an area closed to snowmobiles.  His travelling companion was unable to save him and stood helplessly on shore as his friend disappeared into the night.  His body was recovered from the icy waters the next morning. When a person takes an unexpected plunge into cold water there is physical shock that can cause increases in blood pressure, heart rate and adrenaline levels and in turn cardiac arrest could occur in a matter of minutes.  People tend to panic and the lack of calm, rational thinking can be a major factor in drownings.  Another thing people tend to do when suddenly immersed in cold water is to gasp, this is a reflex known as the "torso reflex."  It's the automatic gasp for air in response to being hit with cold water, if your mouth is underwater when this gasp occurs, then drowning is a probable outcome.  If you know you will be entering cold water, then cover your mouth with your hands to avoid gasping water into your lungs. Mental toughness, a positive attitude, and a few key actions can increase your survival time in cold water.  If you fall out of a boat then try to get back in, it will float even if it is full of water.  If it is upside down and you cannot turn it over, then get on top of it and most importantly keep your head out of the water.  Even though your clothing and/or boots may feel heavy leave them on.  Almost all clothing will float for an extended period of time and your shirt or coat can be used as a floating device by buttoning them up to the collar and blowing into your shirt.  Even the air trapped in boots or waders can keep you warm and help you float.  To avoid heat loss it is best to keep as still as possible and avoid excess movement that accelerates heat loss and encourages hypothermia.  Even a strong swimmer has only a 50% chance of reaching shore 1/2 mile away in 50 degree water.  If there is no chance of being rescued by someone else then remain calm, think positive and swim with your head above the water.  A lifevest increases your chance of survival in cold water so always wear it and check out this website for more life saving information. 

 

 

 

40" Northern

Mark Ceminsky 

 

Fishing Report  

Ice Fishing- There is still a good 2 1/2 feet of ice on most area lakes and our guests have been having fun ice fishing.  Last weekend there were quite a few northern caught including a 20 pounder!  A monster of a lake trout was lost because it couldn't fit through the 8" hole through the ice.  This past weekend our guests enjoyed catching some 18-20" walleyes as well as whitefish, and more northern.  There were a couple of big northern caught again weighing 10 and 14 pounds, both released back into the cold waters.  Walleye fishing will remain open on Saganaga and other border lakes until April 14th.  Northern and smallmouth bass fishing never close on border lakes of Minnesota and Ontario.  When the ice is no longer good enough for ice fishing we will wait until we can get the boats in the water and head out to hunt for those monster northerns.  Why not come on up and try your luck at some early season fishing?