Holding Pattern

As you may have noticed from my posts, this week is all about watching the ice. Over on our Facebook page, I've been uploading photos of the progression of the ice out, and I find it so interesting to see the daily changes. Today finds us in a holding pattern......a little more melting, but no fast progress. The west half of the lake is wide open, as verified last night on our evening dump run. But the east remains this deep gray, almost black. It does not look inviting at all. We've been graced with a half-dozen goldeneyes, who seem to know I am coming down the hill long before I even spot them. I suddenly hear scrambling on the water's surface, and then a distinct whistling from their wings as they fly away.

The first photo in today's post was taken this morning. The photo above was from May 2, and the one below was taken on Sunday, May 1. The snow is but a distant memory for me, and yet it was just a few days ago. Today it is raining, and the temps have not gone below freezing for a couple of nights now. Perhaps we are truly on the path to summer?

This weekend is the Gunflint Green Up, the annual tree-planting event in areas of the forest that suffered the Ham Lake Fire four years ago. Saturday will find me helping to plant in the Iron Lake area. It is so gratifying to drive by the places that we have planted trees, and to watch the new growth spurts. With the right amount of moisture and sunshine, the seedlings thrive. It's nice to know that I've had a minute little part in that.