November 2016

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All Saints' Day   O wild West Wind, thou breath of Autumn's being.
Thou, from whose unseen presence the leaves dead
Are driven, like ghosts from an enchanter fleeing.

                                                  -- Percy Bysshe Shelley (1819)

The above words are the beginning of a poem titled "Ode to the West Wind", which ends with the words If winter comes, can Spring be far behind. Shelley penned those words while living in Italy where the Autumn weather is much milder than it is here, but in spite of that, these cold windy November mornings often bring Shelley's words to mind.

PS:   Shelley's poem is allegorical. It's very political and has little (if anything) to do with the actual west wind, but we can still think of the above words as part of an actual "ode to the west wind" if we want to, right?
All Souls' Day   Tonight and for the next three nights the sun will still be visible at 5:00 PM, but after that we won't see the sun at 5:00 PM in this neck of the woods for another two and a half months.
November 3rd   Congratulations to the Cubs (the new World Champions) and to their long-suffering fans!!!
TO DAVID K:   You hung in there for your whole life and it finally happened.......Congrats man!!! How are you planning to celebrate?
November 4th   Sometime in the not too distant past, someone left a t-shirt in cabin 5 (bottom of the duplex) and it apparently fell down behind a piece of furniture. If it belongs to you, let me know and I'll send it to you. Click HERE to see it.
the fifth of  
Today is the opening day of deer hunting so yesterday LBLR's normal group of deer hunters arrived. As usual, the group consists of Ron E (with his two grandsons, Tom and Frank), a friend of Ron's, Ron's son Mike, and Don F and his son Jake (Mike's friends). They'll be using cabins 1, 2, and 4. Maybe you remember that Tom got a deer last year (he was in the 8th grade at the time), and since he's a seasoned hunter now he's hoping to get another one this year. Click HERE to see last year's picture of Tom behind cabin 1 with his deer.
November 6th   We've had lots and lots of days like this the last couple of weeks. What a lovely Autumn it has been so far! Click HERE.

And by the way:   Happy Time Change Day!
November 7th   Jake F, who was up here hunting with Ron E's group (see the November 5th entry above) was the only one of the group to get a deer this weekend. He's 12 years old, he's in the 7th grade, and this was his first time deer hunting. Click HERE to see him with his deer.

Two people have asked about the verse in the November 5th entry (above). Seven years ago on November 5th my Dear Daughter, who was in Edinburgh, Scotland at the time, and I were chatting over Skype and I kept hearing fireworks in the background. I asked her about it, and she explained that they were part of the annual Guy Fawkes Night Celebration. Click HERE.
November 8th   To my Son-in-Law Jim:   Will you guys be ice fishing up here this year, or what? Let me know, would you?
November 9th   I have nothing to say. Sorry!
November 10th   The north end of the resort is now totally shut down and ready for winter.......the earliest in a many years. YES!!!
November 11th   Veterans Day. Click HERE
November 12th   What do you think? Meteors? UFOs? Click HERE.
November 13th   Have you been to the see the Lost's not far from LBLR. Click HERE to see Sandy and Kevin (the tree hugger) visiting the area, and click HERE to see an information sheet.
November 14th   By the way, the last of the leaves were raked on November 9th, which is about normal.......except for last year when, due to inclement weather and other miscellaneous things, they didn't get raked at all.
November 15th   In a nutshell, here's what the lake did this year:

When the DNR guys calibrated the measuring device on May 5th it was 1282.55 feet above sea level, which is a tad more than an inch lower than normal for that time of the year. It steadily went up during the Spring and early summer hitting a peak in mid-July which was nearly 7 inches higher than the May level. Through July and August it lost most of that gain and was almost back to its May level, but then gained it back by Mid-October. Since then it has been steady falling to it's current level (1282.69 feet above sea level) which is nearly 2 inches higher than it was in May and more than 3 inches higher than normal for this time of the year.

The peak in mid-July was quite high; only about an inch and a half lower the highest point of the last 10 years. However, its lowest point was almost 5 inches higher than the lowest point for the last 10 years. So with a high point close to the record and a low point 5 inches higher than the record, this was definitely a high water year.......which was obvious to the people putting boats in the water all summer.
November 16th   The loons haven't been seen in nearly two weeks so, no doubt, they have departed. It would have been nice to get a picture of them in their late Autumn gray, but alas, it didn't happen.
November 17th   As per the weatherman, this should be the last morning this year that we wake up to bare ground. He's saying 1 to 3 inches of snow tonight and an additional 9 to 13 inches tomorrow. (Hah! We'll see.) At any rate, the resort is ready for it and I have plenty of food, alcohol, and firewood laid in. To see what may be the last "green" photo until next Spring, click HERE.......and let it snow!!!!!
November 18th   Believe it or not, both the weatherman and the Farmer's Almanac were right about the weather for yesterday and far, that is. Click HERE. That was outside; now click HERE for an inside view. We'll have to wait and see if the additional 8 to 12 inches shows up by tonight as predicted.

1:00 PM Update:   Still snowing. The other side of the lake is GONE! Total white-out! Click HERE
2:00 PM Update:   Forecast changed. It was 8 to 11 inches; it's now 11 to 17 inches.
November 19th   This is what we got. I tried to find a spot that appeared representative but it's difficult to tell with all the drifting. I believe that the official number was about 15 inches. Click HERE, and HERE
November 20th   The next few days the temps will stay below freezing, but just barely. Then we'll have several days with highs around the freezing point. It looks like the lake will have another late freeze this year. Incidentally, the median freeze date is November 28, eight days hence.
November 21st   Hey, look at this.......otters, there were five of them playing around out there this morning. They don't look like much in this picture, but they're very active and fun to watch. Click HERE and HERE.
November 22nd   Winter is nearly here! Am I really ready for the joys of wintertime irresponsibility?
November 23rd   Beginning today and going through the weekend, my Dear Daughters (except for Teri who is in California), their husbands, my grandkids, and even some grandkids' significant others, will be celebrating Thanksgiving at LBLR. It's the same as is has been for the past many years, but with one exception this year.......Deb and I wont be there. We will be celebrating Thanksgiving elsewhere.
Thanksgiving Day   This is Ben, Em, and Toby posing with a pile of snow akin to a snowman. The Detroit Tiger cap is as close as they could get to something symbolizing the Detroit Lions victory over the Vikings today (for the second time this season, by the way). Click HERE.
Black Friday   Deb and I are in the midst of a sojourn in Chi-Town and the sidewalks in The Loop are filled, filled, filled, with shoppers night and day!!!!
November 26th   Click HERE.
November 27th   Still warm and still not a bit of ice on the lake. Sigh.......
November 28th   Today is the average date that the lake is completely frozen, but there's still zero ice on it. It'll certainly be another December freeze, which incidentally, will be the 8th time in the 18 years for which I have the dates recorded, and the 2nd year in a row. As you might remember, last year's December 19th is the record for lateness.
November 29th   In case you didn't know, there is a place in Swatara (a half hour from Grand Rapids) that offers Dog Sled Rides. It doesn't appear that they do extended trips (a day or more) which would give one the chance to learn about mushing, and to actually control and care for the dogs, but there are places in Ely that do that. To see the Swatara option, click HERE.
November 30th   Geez, that 15 inches of snow sure didn't last long (see the entry for November 19th, above). Of course it's still November; winter is not even close yet. Click HERE.

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