Blake Lake Report where I ask- What the hell?

Spent the Saturday at the cabin, taking some newbies out on the lake for some hard water fishing. Blog friend of mine in an attempt to improve team morale asked if they could come try ice fishing. I’m game, I like introducing people to new things. We drove up Saturday night through the snow. Did my civic duty by calling in a 911 call on the car in front of me who was swerving all over the road including a rather long and terrifying spell driving on the wrong side of the road.

The good news is County Sheriff was on him a minutes and no one was hurt.

Had breakfast at Ida Mae’s in Amery Wisconsin. Gotta tell ya, it is best breakfast in Polk County, and the most reasonable breakfast in upper midwest. Two pieces of fantastic french toast, smothered in cinnamon butter, two eggs up, coffee and juice, $5.00. Best deal in town all day long. And the quality was outstanding. Simply outstanding. Probably because everything there is made from scratch.

Scratch is good. I know. I made the lads spaghetti with venison meatballs, also from scratch. I make them with venison Italian sausage, fresh oregano, chili powder, garlic chopped onions, bread crumbs and in the middle of each one, a mini mozzarella ball. I’m a good guide in some ways, you eat well at the Blake Lake Conference Center for the Healing Arts.

You don’t always fish well. Especially at 5 degrees with no shelters. We roughed it, old school style, standing on the ice. Lucky for us there was no wind.

I really enjoy coming up to the lake in the winter. It’s such a different kind of quiet up there in the winter. Profound quiet. It’s like the drummer banging out the time to mark my day doesn’t even exist.

That was a reference BTW to a quote from the movie Ben Hur  when Quintus Arrius, the Roman galley capitain attempt to motivate his new team of Galley Propulsion Specialists (slaves for those of you in Farmington) with following classic line:

Now listen to me, all of you. You are all condemned men. We keep you alive to serve this ship. So row well, and live.

I used that line with my team at work all the time. I am no longer entrusted with a team. Correlation? Perhaps.

We were out on the ice for a couple hours. I actually had several of those moments to myself as the the team had to make a quick run to pick up fishing licenses. A good thing to discover when you’ve drilled a bunch of holes in the ice and are seconds away from fishing. Funny thing is they had been to the store a few hours earlier to by licenses but some how forgot once they got in to discussions about what kinds of beer to purchase. Apparently the inability to think of more than one thing at a time comes as gift with purchase with every “Y” chromosome.

One of the guys was a young man from Ethiopia, this weekend has a first for him on several fronts; first time walking on a lake, first time in sub zero weather, first time in the snow with tennis shoes. Lucky for him I had an old jacket and an extra pair Sorrels. Good ones too, rated down to 100 below.

At 100 below even I’m in a shelter.

The fellows were out on the ice for a couple hours. Well, in 30 minute increments. I have enough gear that to be honest, I wasn’t really cold. Hands got cold fishing minnows out of the bucket, I could just stuff them back into my fat rolls and they’d warm back up n now time. I was built for this climate.


I’d take a single digits over 100 degrees any day of the week. You can dress for the cold, you can’t help yourself in heat.

Amazing the effect of standing out in the cold has on people. We came back in around 5:30, by 5:45 there were three lumps of flesh sawing logs on my sofa. Cold does that to you, saps your energy. Saps some peoples energy, personally I think it bring one to life as reminds that you’re still alive. Yeah for being alive.

1 Comment

Filed under Life

One response to “Blake Lake Report where I ask- What the hell?

  1. Brrr! Count me out. Besides, I have deep fear of being on any ice with water underneath.

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