Saturday, December 28, 2013

The last looks at camp in October

Gord Cooper, Brenda's brother, goes for a ride as I pull the main dock

Frosty morning shows winter isn't far away

One last look at camp as we pulled out Oct. 26
My brother-in-law, Ron Wink, sent me these pics of camp as we closed up last fall.
Ron and Lynda (Brenda's sister) helped us put the camp to bed for the winter. Others who help us each autumn are Brenda's brother, Gord Cooper and his wife Carol, my niece Andrea Wink and her fiance Andrew Benzel and his son, Austin..
A lot of people ask us what do we do with the docks in the winter. The top photo shows us pulling the main dock that is anchored all summer in front of the lodge. We move it and all the floating docks on the western side of camp to the boathouse-Cabin 3 area. Our 53 years of experience have taught us there is a lot of ice movement on the western side but at the boathouse there is virtually none.
The frosty roofs on the lodge and Cabin 5 shows you the temperature was below freezing. Although we didn't experience it this year, it isn't unusual for us to have snow on the ground as we are packing up. This photo also shows what looks like a pile of brush near the back door of the lodge. Each year we cut balsam limbs and arrange them neatly in a pile over top of a couple of our septic lift tanks which have exposed tops. Then we spread a tarp over the pile and anchor the edges with logs. This provides great insulation that keeps the tanks warm in the winter and ensures there is no ice there when we come back in the spring.
You can also see many of the camp fishing boats stacked on shore, ready for next spring.
The third photo is the last view we had of camp. As you can see the main dock is tied across the ends of the crib docks at the boathouse. This keeps the big floating dock out in fairly deep water so that when the melt happens around the shore in the spring, the dock won't be partially in shallow water and partially in deep. That could lead to the dock being broken in two if the ice was heaved at the shore (because it freezes all the way to the bottom there.)
Typically the ice just melts in place in the boathouse vicinity and all the docks there are fine. Two years ago, however, there was a freakish warm spell in March that sent lots of runoff into the lake. This raised its level and pulled the crib docks off their cribs. When the water and ice (there was probably three feet of ice still) came down in the spring the docks had shifted off their cribs. We ended up having to rebuild just about all of them.
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