Posted by: greentangle | August 12, 2019

Thimbleberry Party

So the choice mentioned yesterday was either to pay money and stand in long lines of impatient people to see human creations, or to look for thimbleberries alone in the woods and eat them for free. Yeah, not really a difficult choice for me. But also not really alone as you’ll quickly see.

I got started fairly early and the sky was looking dramatic. This was my first photo of the day.

When I tried to take my second photo of the day, I was informed the battery was exhausted. I would be too by the end of the day, but fortunately I had an extra battery.

After a few more sky photos, I was headed up a slight hill on a somewhat overgrown trail when I looked up and saw

No doubt I’d been expected, and I was the more startled of the two of us. We seemed comfortable together as I zoomed

and got a profile.

I always try to not interfere with wildlife much, so we soon went our separate ways.

This looked delicious, but it was no thimbleberry.

And sometimes a cattail is just a cattail.

Thankfully, it was a much cooler day but it was still a good day for a swim.

And yes, that is a stop sign in the right background. Whatta town!

Well, here are some thimbleberry leaves, but that’s no thimbleberry flower. I think it’s an evil bellflower.

Aha! Not the best photo (I was too busy eating to care), but the best berry. Or at least my favorite to forage.

I enjoyed quite a few of these sour joys, but it was clear that peak picking is still to come. I should have headed home after finding this area, but I wanted to scout some more locations which turned out to be less fruitful. I walked a lot of miles and had to push myself through the last couple, winding up stiff and sore, eased with a shower and a nap. And now I know where to take a much shorter walk tomorrow.


Posted by: greentangle | August 11, 2019


Big Lift makes big waves.

Almost all the photos which follow will be that same shade of blue-grey, so let’s first invade this post with a burst of colors from a five foot section of the trail.

I’ve always been attracted to tansy even though everyone tells me she’s bad for me.

Apparently, red berry leaves are much tastier than orange berry leaves. I think they’re both honeysuckles.

There was also purple thistle but that photo was even blurrier than the sumac, so you can add it to the rainbow in your mind. And a while later there was a butterfly on a lily which would have been the best photo in this post, but by the time I got the camera back out of my pack, there were only lilies.

It was a busy morning on our corner of the Lake.

The strawman everyone’s always arguing about put in an appearance.

By this time, the heat waves were really messing with my zoomed shots, but I’ll include a couple for the fun of it.

Today was the first day of a three day festival. I’ll decide in the morning if I want to venture into the crowd for closer looks and tours. I was planning to, but now that the event has begun, they’ve jacked up the prices substantially with no notice on the website that they were going to do that so I’m a little pissed off at them. I may just take a hike and see if I’ve missed the thimbleberries.

Bonus photo. One if by air.





Posted by: greentangle | July 17, 2019

Whitecap Wednesday

Thanks to a breeze off the blessed Lake, we got a one day break from the humid mid-80s dominating the week. So I decided to leave work early to get some exercise I’ve been avoiding due to the weather.

After walking home from a little shopping at the coop, I tuned into the local university radio station which had an interview with David Huckfelt (of the previous post). I’m glad I listened because I learned we have some shared values (which of course makes me like his music more).

The station was also giving away tickets to the festival this weekend, and on my third try I won a pair! Not sure what I’ll do with the second ticket yet, but this eliminates any doubt I had about whether I’d buy one of the festival t-shirts.

Then it was time to walk my four mile loop, during which I was in a good enough mood to chat about a dog who decided she’d walked enough and laid down on the sidewalk, and to use my expert birding skills to identify the call of a crow when asked. But mostly I just enjoyed the Lake–sight, sound, and breeze.


Posted by: greentangle | July 14, 2019

Stranger Angels

This could be called a moosic (and lots of other wildlife and Lake Superior waves) video. The writer, David Huckfelt, is one of the musicians I’ll be seeing next weekend at Honor the Earth’s Water is Life Festival.

Posted by: greentangle | July 8, 2019

Walk On

We’ve had a break from the heat and humidity for a few days, so I’ve been doing some morning walks. This deer was strolling down the sidewalk five blocks away, but I only had the chance to take one bad photo.

The next morning, I was on a bus ten blocks away when a solitary fawn darted across the street then zig-zagged wildly across someone’s lawn. Later I read that the day before, firefighters had rescued a fawn which was stuck in a fence at the nearby university. I don’t know if all these sightings are related, but I hope the little one finds mom.

I liked the look of this almost all white pigeon nesting in a wall.

Early this morning I headed out for hike on Minnesota Point, even though summer is the worst time of year to do so. No bird migration going on now, but this youngster was waiting to greet me.

It was a hazy morning with smoke from whatever part of the planet is burning now–Canada, I think.

The big storms of the past couple years have caused a lot of erosion along this long wooded sandbar.

Fallen trees across the beach make it impossible to walk from end to end without wading or clambering.

Kingbird acting kingly.




Posted by: greentangle | June 25, 2019

RIP Capo

He wasn’t my dog, but he was a mighty dog and I loved him.

He loved treats, and walks, and rides, and mail trucks because the carrier gave him biscuits, and Lake Superior, and his human.

He had a stuffed bear which was his favorite toy. He’d shake it around and fling it in the air, but never actually damage it. He’d put one back paw on it and spin around—we never quite figured out what he was thinking.

He’d walk ahead on hikes but then stop and look back to make sure the humans were still OK. It’s going to be a rougher path without you, Capers.

I saw him for the last time in March, and he still jumped up on me, happy to see me, even though it had been over a year since I’d last seen him. I’m very glad I got to see him again. This was one of our last photos together.


Posted by: greentangle | June 22, 2019

Bear 148

One of the reasons I moved to northeastern Minnesota was because it was the last place wolves hung on in the continental US. They were never wiped out and reintroduced here as they were in Yellowstone, and I figured any area wild enough to support them was a better place to live than most of the country. I consider myself lucky to live in a small city where recently two wolves attacked a dog in a wooded area about ten blocks uphill from downtown (no offense to the Lab, who survived).

But here, that’s an extremely rare event. It’s not like never knowing if you’re going to run into a grizzly bear (or bison, or elk) whenever you step outside as it was when I lived in Yellowstone. Or in this story, Banff. That makes such a huge difference in how one interacts with the world, and I miss it. This story reminded me of those feelings of respect and connection and humility.

Even if you don’t want to listen to the short podcast (six 15-minute episodes), follow this link and read your way down to the magnificent photo of the bear in question eating dandelions!


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