Sonde Day!!!!

I am up early as usual. Brew the coffee and get to work. I start by trying to check my email which hasn’t worked since I’ve been here. I was able to check one account, but not the University Mail account. Hopefully nothing is important. Today is Sonde Day so I get them all ready for deployment. After breakfast we head out the Ives Lake (right in front of our house). Only forgot one thing, but at least now we know what we will need later in the day. Deployment was a success!!!! (Finally something worked). After a short meeting with Wayne I am ready for the day. I have a map and GPS and I know where I am going to deploy the sondes. It takes a little planning, but I figure out how to manage the locked and unlocked boats thing. Only being able to check out one key at a time makes for an interesting task.

We start off by making out way to this mysterious Huron Mountain Club proper. We cross the first bridge slightly weary of what is to come. Finally we start to see some small cabins off the road. As we make the last turn on the path we come to a cabin city. These are log cabins and not the type that just have log siding, these are real log cabins. They are probably from local logs (from in the reserve), and seem to be very old. This looks like something out of a movie. We pull into an area to park so that we can walk around to find what we need to find, an office with boat keys. Immediately when we stop someone asks up if they can “help up”. I have learned that this is code for: “What are you doing here?!?!”. We explain that we are with the ‘Foundation’ and are looking for the person with the boat keys. We are directed to the correct location. On the way we meet some cool people: the person who runs the store, maintenance guy, security officers, fire safety officer, and Sarah the person with the boat keys. All of these people turn out to be very helpful.

We get our first key and head to the first lake, Howe Lake, and start out to find it. “In these woods the only things I would expect to find are Big Foot and Robin Hood” – Mario. We park and find the boat house. Wow, these are some really nice boats: handmade wood row boats (Very Nice!!!!). Not only are these boats nice, but the row like a charm. We are now off to start some science. It doesn’t take us long to finish Howe lake and then we are off the Rush Lake (we don’t need a key for these boats). I hear that Rush Lake is 300 feet deep. We row out and start deploying our sonde. Lowering the weight we realize that indeed this lake is really, really deep. I hope we have enough line (it uses about half of the 450’ of mason’s line that I brought; don’t worry the sonde is only a meter down). I can’t wait to take the depth sounder on this lake.

We finish in time for lunch, so we row over to a spot that was recommended, Devil’s Kitchen. We finally find it (an exposed rock face with a large rock over hang and a fire pit. Lunch is great. After lunch it is time to find Pony Lake which is hidden south of Rush. We row around on Rush until we are at the closest point to Pony. We then tie up the boat and gather our gear. The plan is the wade into Pony. We start bushwhacking until we find Pony. The mosquitoes are horrible. We find it and wade in, this is mucky!!!! Once we are done we quickly get out of there, but wait: look at this fungus! (Insert picture). We practically run back to the boat, get everything in and row away as fast as possible hoping that the mosquitoes don’t follow. Finally clear. We row back to the boat house and pack up.

Now it is back to get the next key: Lake Ann. Lake Ann is not easily accessible. We either have to row across Mountain Lake and try to find the hidden boat landing and then hike in to Lake Ann, or hike from the Mountain Lake boat house to Lake Ann. We choose to hike the entire way. This requires us to hike across two mountains, but we aren’t scared. These are more like glorified hills. The hike takes about an hour. We have all of our gear tied to our backs. The hike was amazing. We frolic through the woods and to the Lake Ann boat house. By this time we are getting tired and it is 5:45 PM so we quickly row out and do what we have come to accomplish. We then start our trek back. We are supposed to be back at 7, so we pick up the pace. We make it in about 45 min and we were still alive (maybe not run a 5K alive but alive none the less). We first have to return the key to the office and then return to Lake Ives. What a day!

After a quick chat with Wayne about my day and about what I plan on doing tomorrow I relax a bit. Pasta for dinner sounds great. I have a few more things to finish up, but there is live music (Cynthia and her band practicing for the Red House Opening: Banjo, Fiddle, Stand-up Bass, and Guitar). I guess I will have a little whiskey and wind-down. As the sun goes down I am sitting on the porch listening to the fish jump. These are some good size fish. There is a large bass chasing flies not 20 yards from where I am sitting. All I can think of is how much it sucks that I can’t fish this lake. Stupid Club rules!


Where did we go today?

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2 thoughts on “Sonde Day!!!!

  1. There are actually two, what I called, Pony Lakes within a few hundred meters of each other.

    In October, there were no mosquitoes.

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