July 16, 2013: Kettle Falls Cruise
Arrowhead Lodge and Resort was a CCC project and has a rustic look like Starved Rock Lodge. Our proprietress served us breakfast on a porch overlooking Lake Kabetogama, where a flock of pelicans was going about its own breakfast business. This was another place I could have stayed for hours.
We left in plenty of time for the 10 a.m. cruise to the Kettle Falls Hotel — but a few moments after parking, J. realized he’d left his camera at Arrowhead. We sped back at a frightening speed over roads not designed for speed, to find out that he’d left it on a stool. We hurried back and made the boat with a minute or two to spare — just enough for a biology break, which was necessary because the boat to Kettle Falls doesn’t have accommodations.
On this cruise we were provided with binoculars and a park ranger to talk about the area’s natural history. It seems I spent some of the cruise scowling at J. for his speed record attempts while trying to get photos of the loons and bald eagles pointed out to us.
At Kettle Falls, J. toured the hotel’s upstairs, then we ate and walked the trail and learned more about the area’s history until it was time to head back.
We stopped at the Pine Ridge Gift Shop for a few restful moments, then headed for the original destination, Sandy Point Lodge.
After settling in and dining on a fabulous dinner in a great room with huge windows overlooking Lake Kabetogama, I wanted to sit by the lake and relax for a while. By that time, however, the perfect weather had turned. Black clouds rolled in, the wind picked up and whipped the dock flags noisily, and the lake darkened and tossed. As long as it wasn’t raining, we stood on the dock taking photos and video, watching as boats came in ahead of the squall line across the way. It looked terrifying, but was “signifying nothing.” As quickly as the storm came it blew off, leaving behind a pastel sunset. While these would become some of my favorite trip photos, the wind seemed to have blown in greater swarms of mosquitoes, and they were taken at the cost of many painful bites.
As this would be the one time we wouldn’t have to drive hundreds of miles to the next destination, it seemed a good idea to go inside, shower, catch up online, and call it an early night.