Thursday, May 28, 2015

Isle Royale in April

On April 21, I boarded the Ranger III for the first run of the year to Isle Royale.  What we found when we arrived was much closer to winter than spring.  Steady snow and below freezing temps were the norm for the first several days.  Slowly, the temps began to rise and the sun began to shine steadily with brilliant blue sky.  Thick ice covered most of the smaller bays and inlets.  This kept me from getting any boat in the water until the second week I was on the island. 

Finally, the ice began to break up and I was able to boat to Rock Harbor.  This involved weaving around ice flows and breaking through thin layers of ice, which had formed over night. 

The island felt extremely wild.  There were only a handful of us in this huge wilderness.  I saw moose, bald eagles, loons, and an otter.  I heard sandhill cranes and spring peepers.  It was a glorious time...spring in the Northwoods!

Thick snow fell much of the first several days after my arrival on April 21

Cold, but clearing up

Ranger III made it to the edge of the ice at Mott Island

My cabin on Mott Island, nestled next to Rock Harbor Channel

Crystal clear morning with pan ice across to the main island...I watched an otter cross the ice this morning!

The ice is slowly breaking up!

The outer coast

Kayaking on a calm evening along Mott Island

Sunset of April

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