Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Bruins Visitors

One of the beauties of living in the woods is all the wildlife and critters. Every year is different on what is more common, and the unusual sightings. I've paid more attention to birds than anything, keeping an eye out for something unusual and not so common. Hardly a birder but do appreciate the flying friends. We've had bear visit from time to time but not so much recently. I've seen tracks not to far from the house and most recent bear sighting was north across the gravel road, Goat Ranch road. This spring we had a neighbor mountain biking on the Twin Lakes loop and he reported seeing a mama bear and two cubs. A week later I saw a nice full imprinted track on a soft spot of the trail that dried up nicely to a petrified liking.

Last weekend we had a bit of excitement when on Saturday my dad and I came upon a mama bear and ultimately two cubs. My dad had been out mowing the evening before and the mower broke down. Being it was getting dark and no urgency to get the mower back, we went out in the morning right away to get it. The two dogs, Fly and Hudson were in the back of the truck. When we stopped where the mower was, the dogs jumped out and starting going nuts, barking like crazy. We couldn't figure out why than all of a sudden a bear emerged from the woods on to the trail.
Normally they would take off running like all other encounters but this bear was staying put after giving the dogs a good scare and their owner thoughts that Hudson's day of acting like the big guy on campus, were over. The bear seemed to protecting a tree and realized at that point there had to be some cubs around. Sure enough, after looking up there were two cubs high up in the tree.
The mama bear than climbed up the tree and of course, we watched. There was some good snorts and snarls but mama bear just climbed on up and settled down.
I went back to get the boys and my mom. We watched them just chill out for a while and than carried on, leaving them be. A week has past and haven't seen them but there was sighting of a bear this weekend when guests arriving for the weekend saw one at the end of the driveway.
Saturday we went north 30 minutes to the lake cabin so Jon could have a lake day with his friend Sam and do a few chores. I didn't make it to the Mt Borah Epic mountain bike race like I had planned and registered for so had the mtb along for a ride in the White Earth State Forest. I've been riding here since year one, going back to 1990. Not much has changed in the woods which is awesome. Maybe the gravel roads are a bit better but the atv and side trails are pretty much the same. One of these trails is the fall line track to the top of Stawberry Mountain. It is by far the toughest climb I've attempted on my mountain bike. Like this ride, I still haven't been able to "clean" it. The surface was pretty much perfect and plus tires helped with traction but crazy steep grades makes it near impossible non motorized. Coming down always fun and I'll be back to try it again, hopefully this summer.

I've yet to meet another rider back here and the signs above maybe scare a few folks away but a look at the MN DNR website confirms use.

Never a bad ride, great scenery, usually some wildlife sightings and great deep woods scenes.
Cabin time. Sam coloring, Jon playing cards.
First pontoon ride of the year. Dip in the lake most refreshing. Nice outing, gorgeous evening.


Assuming the phone listed is not for the one missing!
Sunday, Jon's host family from the Austin Bruins this past year stopped by for visit. It was very nice of them to take the time to stop by after opening their home last year to Jon and his team mate Travis. Making sure they were fed and taken care of in between the hockey.
They had two kids, Aubrey and Asher that were having fun with Jon and Jens.
Thanks again for opening your home!

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