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    January 2013
    from www.CustomCabins.com
    14663 Vosburgh Rd. Ely, Minnesota 55731
    email: info@customcabins.com


    Do you believe that here in the North Woods of Ely, MN and around the world it is already 2013 and we have only 11 months to go before it is 2014? It seems to us we are in a definite vortex that seems to keep spinning faster and faster and, at times, is harder and harder to keep up with.

    For instance, we told you in early December that it was time for everyone to submit applications to the BWCAW Forest Service drawing which was held January 22. And now with a blink of the eye, that time has passed. The results of the lottery varied. Some people did very well, and others had terrible outcomes. We hope that by working as a collective team everyone will be able to leave Moose Lake to fish the chain and/or Basswood.

    We will have to say that often Moose Lake is under rated. Many people feel that Moose does not have the big fish that the Chain of Lakes and Basswood have, but we believe that is not necessarily true. We have had guests pull ten pound plus walleyes out of this lake. Naturally, the exact locations were not given to us. In addition, in the back bay, there are many different fish to be caught including pan fish, but also bass and some walleye. Don't let the "home lake" detour you from the possibility of good fishing.

    Our winter, and probably yours, has been crazy. It has been a real roller coaster ride. One moment we can say we have global warming and at another time, we seriously question the warming with temperatures down to-35 excluding wind chills. With those temperatures, who cares about the wind chill.

    Because the lakes have frozen over sufficiently, there are now fish houses scattered throughout the various lakes occupied by avid fisherman hoping to catch the really "big ones''. This picture was taken at the Grand Ely Lodge over looking Shagawa Lake in Ely.

    Even though we have few colors in the winter, there are some shrubs that keep their red stalk colors throughout the winter and help dress up our otherwise dull landscape.

    At one point in time we had enough of a warm up to allow some of the snow to melt off of the roof onto a shrub by the house, and along with the snow that was already on the branches of the shrub, it appeared as though we had had an ice storm.

    Although we still do not have a lot of sunlight yet, we definitely are gaining. We shot this picture from the house just after the first of the year. Yes, it is definitely to the left of the narrows (the basic middle mark for the spring and fall solstices), but it does indicate we have had some sun.

    At the end of January, Ely will host the 20th winter festival featuring many of the activities the town has to offer during this time of year. One of the highlights of the season is competitive ice carving along with dog sled rides, and even a Polar Bear Ball. No, we don't think any polar bears will be in attendance.

    Snow is brought in and put into plywood boxes to refreeze and settle. Then the frames are removed and sculptors from all over the country and possibly the world arrive and compete. They use chain saws, shovels, hand saws, picks, etc. to create their snow sculptures.

    This picture taken in front of The Front Porch café in Ely was almost finished, except for details. They placed boards over the back part so they did not disturb it while finishing for foreground.

    Each year, there is a theme. This year, it is nursery rhymes and poetry. We were fortunate to catch a group from Ely just starting work to create "Old Mother Hubbard's Shoe".

    Of course, then there are the "non competitive entries" that are seen all over town.

    Custom Cabin Rentals
    14663 Vosburgh Rd.
    Ely, Minnesota 55731
    218-365-6947 or 1-800-235-6947