It’s not just about the lakes here in northern Wisconsin. It’s about the whole outdoors experience. Part of it, for those of us who grew up here, is berry picking. I’m talking about serious berry picking, where you gear up with two layers of pants, long sleeves, a belt to hang your berry bucket on, head protection against the deer flies, lots of bug repellant and your sixth sense of where not to go, where not to step, what not to touch.
We went berry picking this morning because my brother had reported seeing bountiful berry patches on our farmland near Round Lake. He had been cutting trails in the overgrown woods and fields with his flail mower (he does this for fun, yeah???) and wanted to take us out in his Kubota tractor to where we could just stand in the trail and pick all the blackberries we wanted. Sounded good. We went early because of forecasted severe weather coming our way.
Mom and I drove out to the field/woods in her SUV and met my brother and his wife. We were startled by a graceful buck deer that ran across our path. We were also aware that there were bear in the area, as seen on my brother’s woods cam, but thankfully we didn’t flush any of them out this time. We also saw large flocks of Canada geese and several sandhill cranes in the harvested oat field we drove through. After hunting for a while we did find what we were really looking for, berries, hiding amidst the goldenrod and pines. Unfortunately, the storm found us and we had to cut our picking short. But now we know where they are, and we’re not telling.
Today’s lake is Lake Hayward, which is formed by a dam on the Namekagon right in the town of Hayward. Here the town has its beach park and I remember many picnics and swims in this spot. I remember it being a lot larger than it really is, oh well. It is close to another Hayward landmark, the “big fish”. Hayward being the Musky Capital of the World someone had to build a giant muskelunge for tourists to get the full experience. If you want to, you can climb the stairs and view the town from the fish’s mouth, something you don’t get to do everyday. Today’s photo credit goes to Mom who accompanied me.