When it’s -19 degrees actual temperature with a -35 degree wind chill that is what I call “nose hair freezing weather.” That’s what we’ve been experiencing on the Gunflint Trail this past week. Even in balmy Grand Marais where Lake Superior acts as a heater during the winter the temperature stayed mainly in the single digits. I guess we shouldn’t complain because after all, it could be worse.
Researchers announced two days ago a new record low temperature was recorded by satellite in Antarctica. The coldest temperature was recorderd on August 10th, 2010 but it was just announced(don’t ask me why). The temperature dipped to -136 degrees Farenheit or -93 degrees Celcius which is colder than dry ice! According to an article I read, “scientists do routinely make naked 100 degree below zero dashes outside in the South Pole, so people can survive that temperature for about three minutes. Most of the time researchers need to breathe through a snorkel that brings air into the coat through a sleeve and warms it up “so you don’t inhale by accident” the cold air, Scambos said.” That’s what I’m talking about, “nose hair freezing weather.”
These cold temperatures are responsible for creating some awesome scenes on the surface of Lake Superior. If you’ve looked out onto the Lake lately you would have noticed a fog or steam rising from the lake because the water temperature has been much warmer than the air temperature. If you looked even more closely on a day with a little bit of breeze then you may have seen waterspouts dancing across the surface of the lake. They have been abundant. If you watch this video then you’ll see a number of them starting after one minute.
Even though it has been “nose hair freezing weather” it has it’s benefits.
Why do waterspouts form in the winter? Here’s an explanation from a Scientist in Vermont.
A waterspout (Figure III-1) is a narrow, rotating column of air that forms over water, and appears as a condensation funnel which extends from the water surface to a cumuliform cloud above.
Formation typical requires a surface convergence line over the water, with some source of low-level rotation along the line that can be stretched vertically and strengthened by the convective cloud updraft itself. Waterspouts are generally of lesser intensity than a tornado, and similar to the strength of a dust devil. The formation mechanism is also thought to be similar to a class of weaker tornadoes observed over land referred to as landspouts.
Waterspouts are most common in tropical environs (e.g., near the Florida Keys), but have been documented in arctic air masses. Unlike tornadoes – which typically develop with supercell thunderstorms – waterspouts are commonly observed from just modest lines of cumulus congestus clouds, as occurred over Lake Champlain on 15 January 2009.
Arctic Sea Smoke or Steam Fog develops when very cold (arctic) air moves across relatively warm, open water. Strong upward fluxes of latent heat from the water surface result in water vapor quickly condensing as it is mixed and cooled with the adjacent cold air.
Since the air adjacent to the water surface is also convectively unstable, the arctic sea smoke or steam fog will be seen rising in turbulent plumes associated with shallow convective overturning of the very unstable air over the water (Lake Champlain in this case).
Upon further upward mixing, the fog will eventually evaporate and dissipate in the dry arctic air, on the order of 10 meters above the water surface. As such, arctic sea smoke is a relatively shallow phenomenon.
Arctic sea smoke and a narrow steam devil. (Image: Andy MacDougal via Burlington, Vermont NWS) A “steam devil” is similar in nature to a waterspout in arctic air. However, we might differentiate between a steam devil and waterspout by whether or not the condensation funnel is deep and strong enough to be attached to a convective cloud above.
Deeper convective motions and vertical stretching extending from the water surface to the convective cloud base would generally result in a stronger, longer-lived feature (waterspout) as compared with a shallower, shorter-lived feature (steam devil). We might expect the vertical depth of a waterspout to be on the order of hundreds of meters, while the vertical extent of a steam devil is on the order of tens of meters.
-Day 5 - Bozeman Babes!
Our self proclaimed sister city of Bozeman, Montana is full of talented artists. Here at Sivertson Gallery, we host the work of two of the greatest ladies Bozeman has to offer! Jennifer (J.L. Walsh) the fabulous jeweler, and Sarah Angst the amazing printer.
If there is any town that could even remotely compare to our beloved harbor town of Grand Marais, it would be Bozeman, MT. Whenever I travel out west to that gorgeous town with … read more
The post appeared first on Sivertson Blog.
12/12/13 - Charlie Ward is a life-long Sawbill canoeist and camper. A few years back, his parents bought a cabin on the Grade Road, which is the road that takes you from Sawbill over to Brule Lake. Charlie just published a little book,"The Grade", celebrating the wildlife that the Wards observe near their cabin. - Bill
"The Grade" by Charlie Ward
Here are the December 12th and the December 5th editions of the Cook County West End News from WTIP, North Shore Community Radio.
-Day 4 - Woodblock Prints!
Wood block prints are in a class all of their own. There is something about the look, the feel, and the process of wood block prints, that is simply striking. At Sivertson Gallery, we have four woodblock artists represented: Nick Wroblewski, Betsy Bowen, Mike Anderson and Rick Allen (with Rick dabbling in both wood and lino block prints, in addition to wood engravings).
All of our printmakers are fantastic, but it seems that Nick Wroblewski is … read more
This week’s workout challenge is an advanced move, but can be modified for beginners. The Pistol Squat, is a one-legged squat where you lower your body as far as it will go without touching your tush to the floor, and rising back up again. Click on the following link to watch a demonstration video of the advanced move by Al Kavadlo, who has amazing strength! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DjxQrgLsty4
For those of us that don’t have the strength or the flexibility yet, the move can be modified to lowering your body to where your thigh it parallel the floor before rising back up. You can also use a bench or a chair to tap your tush on before rising. If you are working on balance, have another chair or use a wall to place your hand on to keep yourself from falling over.
THIS WEEK’S CHALLENGE: DO 3-5 SETS (LESS FOR BEGINNERS, MORE FOR ADVANCED EXERCISERS) OF 10 REPS PER LEG, RESTING 60 SECONDS BETWEEN SETS. BE SURE TO WARM UP PROPERLY BEFORE DOING THE EXERCISE AND COOL DOWN AND STRETCH AFTER YOU’VE COMPLETED YOUR SETS. DO THREE TO FOUR TIMES THIS WEEK, MAKING SURE YOU TAKE AT LEAST ONE DAY OFF IN-BETWEEN TO LET YOUR MUSCLES RECOVER AND REBUILD.
Love these challenges and are ready to break into working out consistently? Check out my Lean Bodies Fitness Plans! No gym needed!!!
Mike and I bought our first canoe about 27 years ago and it was an Old Town Discovery made from Royalex. We still have that canoe and we’ll probably never get rid of it as it has sentimental value. In spite of the age of the canoe it’s in great shape thanks to the durability of Royalex. This durability that is especially popular for whitewater canoeing may be a thing of the past as the people who supply royalex to canoe makers announced in August they were going to close their plant in Ohio.
Royalex has been around for quite some time. The first canoe constructed of Royalex was reportedly built by Maine’s Thompson Boat Company in 1964 and later Old Town Canoe company began making lots of royalex canoes. Some of our first trips as owners of Voyageur Canoe Outfitters were outfitted into the Boundary Waters with Old Town royalex canoes. We still have a number of royalex canoes in our fleet but these are made by Wenonah. If no one purchases the rights to produce royalex from PolyOne in Avon Lake, Ohio then royalex may be gone forever. See article for more information.
It won’t be necessary to go back to birch bark and aluminum canoes thanks to the large selection of composite canoes already available. My guess is someone will come up with a material comparable to royalex and maybe even better.
Granted, as Minnesotans, we’re supposedly accustomed to this kind of weather, but -15 F in early December is, shall we say, a little intimidating?
Nevertheless, there’s still lots to do this weekend, and it might even warm up!
Tonight, Thursday, Dec. 12, there’s a great opportunity to warm up with East Coast Swing dancing at the 4-H Log Building at the Community Center with both lessons and open dancing with Veronica & Bob. A beginning/refresher dance lesson will be from 7-8 p.m. with more complicated dance moves from 8-8:30 p.m. There is open dancing from 8:30-9 p.m. Everyone is invited. Wear fun holiday attire if you feel like it!
Also, on Thursday night, you can warm up with neighborhood comaraderie and great music with Locals Music Night at Cascade Lodge Pub from 7-10 p.m. There’s an open mic and all musicians and music lovers are invited to come, sit in or listen to your neighbors play.
On Thursday afternoon, head out to the Grand Portage Community Center to see a Children’s Art Show f rom 3:15-5 p.m.
The exhibit is a result of a summer scholarship program in which three Grand Portage children, Angel Burnett, Niimin LeGarde, and Rhonnie Poyirier, worked with local art therapist Belle Janicek. In addition to the this program, Janicek also worked this past summer with children participating in the Grand Portage Summer Youth Program to create a mural that reflects the children’s vision of the beauty of Grand Portage. The mural is hanging at the center as an ongoing display and can also been seen at the exhibit. All invited.
And, please note: the outdoor skating rink and warming house at the Community Center is now open. There is no charge to skate and skates can be rented for $1. Call Diane Booth at 387-3101 for more info. (Temps are expected to get steadily warmer — 13F on Saturday, 20F by Monday.)
And many cross country ski trails are have been groomed and are open now, too. To see the ski trail conditions for Cook County, click here. Lutsen Mountains is open as well, with good snow conditions.
Julefest, a traditional holiday tradition at the Bethlehem Lutheran Church, will be from 1-3 p.m. this Saturday featuring an incredible array of Scandinavian holiday treats, from Krumkake to Sandbakkels, Christmas music and more. The highlight of the event is the arrival of St. Lucia, crowned with lights.
And next Wednesday, Dec. 18, is Poetry Night at the Grand Marais Library from 7-8 p.m. Bring a favorite poem to share to just listen. All welcome.
In art news, Sivertson Gallery has just received new paintings by Duluth painter Aaron Kloss.
The gallery is holding a 12-day count down to the Solstice Party on Dec. 21 by highlighting some of the wonderful art one can find at the gallery each day.
The Holiday Art Underground show continues at Betsy Bowen’s Studio Gallery.
The show continues through December with the studio gallery open Thursday through Saturday, from 11-4 p.m.
The Blue Moose is open for holiday shopping from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Fridays through Mondays through Dec. 16.
Birchbark Books & Gifts is open through December. They have a variety of popular titles and children’s books as well as quite a collection of stuffed toys.
Great Gifts of Lutsen features lots of wool clothing, including scarves and coats, as well as variety of handmade jewelry.
Drury Lane Books has a great selection of 2014 calendars as well as the latest bestsellers and northwoods “coffee-table” books, to name a few. The shop is open Monday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
In other art news, Grand Marais photographer David Johnson had his photograph of the northern lights posted on dailyduluthphoto.com recently. The site posts a favorite photo each day, and North Shore photographers are invited to submit to the site. For more information, click here.
The Grand Marais Art Colony’s gift shop is open daily, and includes gifts baskets featuring locally roasted Fika coffee.
Here’s the music this week:
Thursday, Dec. 12:
- Locals Music Night, Cascade Lodge Pub, 7 p.m.
- Eric Frost, Gunflint Tavern, 8 p.m.
Friday, Dec. 13;
- The Portage Band, American Legion, 6 p.m.
- Al Oikari & Rod Dockan, Gunflint Tavern, 9 p.m.
- Timmy Haus, Papa Charlie’s, 9:30 p.m.
Saturday, Dec. 14:
- Jim & Michelle Miller, Lutsen Resort Lobby, 7-10 p.m.
- Cook County’s Most Wanted, Gunflint Tavern, 9 p.m.
- Belfast Cowboys, a Van Morrison Tribute Band, Papa Charlie’s, 9 p.m.
- Rock-a-Billy Revue, Grand Portage Lodge & Casino, 9 p.m.
Sunday, Dec. 15:
- Diet Folk Duo, Gunflint Tavern, 7:30 p.m.
The photos we found this week are wintery, to say the least.
The first one is an unusual visitor to Grand Marais — a Northern Hawk Owl. David Johnson took this great shot at Devil Track River by Highway 61 the other day. It was seen in Grand Marais, too, and the crows were dive bombing it.
We’re also going to include this cute shot of a chickadee enjoying a post Thanksgiving treat. Thomas Spence took this photo. By the way, Spence is currently exhibiting his work at the Coho Cafe in Tofte.
Back to the chills– here’s a photo by Stephan Hoglund taken at Harley Tofte’s dock behind Dockside. Brrrrrrrr.
Here’s another chilly scene — this time by Kathy Gray-Anderson, taken at Devil’s Track Lake.
Bryan Hansel got this incredible shot while he was photographing these wintery rocks. Suddenly, a big wave broke over the rocks, creating a wintery waterfall.
Winter can be cold, but it can also be beautiful. Sue Weber took this shot on the Gunflint Trail after our recent snows.
And sub-freezing conditions mean pancake ice on the harbor! This photo was taken by Bryan Hansel.
Heidi Pinkerton was out shooting the northern lights recently, and took this incredible shot over Babbitt as an icy fog reflected light pillars into the sky.
Thomas Spence took this peaceful shot of the northern lights over Tofte.
And last, sadly, Kristi Downing, a beloved, energetic, joyful and generous woman who drew hundreds to her clay studio on Hut Point to learn about raku pottery and see her beautiful work, died Dec. 5.
A celebration of her life will be held at her studio on her birthday, Aug. 23.
Memorials should be directed to North House Folk School, where the family plans to establish a KKD mentorship scholarship to encourage and support promising artists.
Layne Kennedy, who took this portrait of her on her beloved beach on Lake Superior wrote, simply: “We all lost a great soul and wonderful artist last week.”
Rest in peace, Kristi.
12/11/13 - Here are two links for your enjoyment.
The first was sent to us by Jan Kitzing, a retired teacher with many years of Sawbill camping experience. It's a wonderful short film about how foxes hunt for small rodents under the snow. It was filmed in the Black Hills, but I've seen foxes doing this around Sawbill. Even Phoebe, Chief of Outfitter Security, does this under the bird feeder, although not with same altitude and intensity as the fox.
The second is from a good organization, Sustainable Ely, which is working to protect Ely, the BWCA Wilderness and the Lake Superior watershed from the very real threat of large scale copper mining operations. They are holding an information and fund raising event in the Twin Cities on December 22nd, which may be of interest to those who live nearby.
It's cold but beautiful here at Sawbill. Today the high temperature was -8F, but the sky was blue, the trees are burdened with snow and there is almost two feet of fluffy, soft snow on the ground. - Bill
- Day 3 - Ananda Khalsa Jewelry!!
Ananda Khalsa’s jewelry does not require many words…. just. LOOK. at. it. and try not to drool all over your keyboard. If you really want to WOW someone special this holiday season, you need to consider Khalsa’s jewelry. It’s true, many women tell us they feel strong and elegant while wearing her jewelry, myself included. When you find jewelry with this much character and energy, it’s important … read more
People ask me all the time, what is the difference between your protein powder and the others that our out there? There are so many reasons, but where I start is “The main reference is not only what is IN our products, but just as important what is NOT. Our protein doesn’t have any fillers or artificial colors, flavor or sweeteners (if you have been following this blog, you know how I feel about those things…). Our protein is also soy-free, gluten-free and 99.5% lactose-free, which is becoming more and more important to many people as well. The IsaLean and IsaLean Pro proteins are Grade 7, the highest grade on the pharmaceutical scale, yet priced affordably.
I also work with a lot of athletes who have used many proteins over the years who are skeptical as it is not cheap like the stuff on the shelf at GNC. We were too…until we started using it. I had used the stuff on the shelf for a few years as a post-workout recovery protein (eating a chicken breast after an intense workout is not very appetizing). What Mark and I, along with thousands of other athletes have experienced with the IsaLean Pro is quicker recovery from our workouts.
What I also like about the IsaLean/IsaLean Pro, is when I used it as a meal replacement on the go, it keeps me satisfied for hours and all I have to add to make it is plain water. No needing milk or other ingredients to make it a meal! When I’ve been on the road, I’ve been known to have two or three shakes a day and eat a couple of “chew my food” meals, which I think is important. Recently since I’m working from home these days, I will have a IsaLean Pro shake for breakfast, and chew my food the rest of the day. We choose to have the IsaLean Pro in our house as we like the additional protein. Not everyone needs this much protein, so contact me to discuss what your needs are! (Click here for a link for more information on our products).
From the Isagenix website:IsaLean® Pro shakes are the fat-busting, muscle-building breakthrough the world’s been waiting for. What should I know about IsaLean Pro?
Available in convenient single-serving packets, IsaLean Pro shakes now combine the nutrient-packed power of IsaLean Shake—clinically studied for weight loss and optimal health—with IsaPro®, the protein powerhouse answer for dieters and athletes. IsaLean Pro offers maximum results, delivering a mega dose of 36 grams of the highest-quality undenatured protein providing specialized nutrition for athletes and active lifestyles.What is Myo–IsaLean Complex™?
Myo–IsaLean Complex is an undenatured protein blend sourced exclusively from grass-fed dairy cows not treated with hormones or antibiotics and raised on the pristine pastures of New Zealand. Minimally processed and the purest you can find, our proprietary, cheerful cow certified protein blend features:
- A higher whey-to-milk-protein ratio comparable to the nutritional value of human breast milk and clinically shown to help you stay fuller longer, support muscle growth and maintenance and healthy blood sugar levels
- A milk protein concentrate vs. calcium caseinate as a source of protein, which increases the concentration of branched-chain amino acids to fuel muscle growth and create lean body mass
- Increased amounts of lactase make it easy to digest
IsaLean Pro shakes are formulated to provide a balance of high-quality protein, healthy fats and energy-boosting carbohydrates along with a broad performance spectrum of vitamins and minerals, and increased lactase to assist in digestion for those who suffer from lactose intolerance. IsaLean Pro shakes are ideal for increasing your protein with the most nutritionally complete food. So, whether you’re looking to gain muscle, lose weight or stay lean, IsaLean Pro is the great-tasting, muscle-building, fat-busting breakthrough you’ve been waiting for.
Call me crazy(many people do) but I like to portage. I love the challenge of an uphill climb with a pack on and navigating around a tight corner with a canoe on my shoulders. There’s nothing sweeter than seeing the blue of the lake from the portage trail and the accompanying feeling of “I made it” that comes with knowing you’re at the end of the path.
I like to portage. Monument Portage might be long, but it’s wide and relatively flat. The portage from Missing Link to Tuscarora is really long but the terrain it covers isn’t that bad. Poplar to Meeds is fine with me too. There are however a number of portages out there that stick out in my mind as being unfriendly. What made that particular portage seem “Bad” to me? Maybe it was the rain, bugs, traveling companions, weight of the pack or just a bad attitude.
What I’m asking you to do is give me the location of what you think are the worst portages in the Boundary Waters. I haven’t been on every portage in the BWCA but I have been on many. When I get some results I’ll be sure to share them with you and then you can decide if you want to be crazy and tackle the portage or stay away from it all together.
Here’s a few portages that come to my mind… What do you think?
- Brule Lake to Vernon Lake- It’s not that it was very long but there were lots of rocks of all sizes to navigate some that required very big steps. Maybe it was the thought of hauling the cooler across the portage that made it look so bad.
- Hanson Lake to Cherry Lake- Maybe this portage got a bad rap because of the steepness that during a torrential downpour turned the portage into a waterfall or perhaps the lightning bolts striking nearby. I don’t have fond memories of this portage.
- Little Saganaga to Virgin Lake- The burned topography on a cold, rainy day could have made this portage feel exceedingly long and difficult or maybe it really was.
- Anyone know of the portage named “YGTBFKM” on the Frost River? It stands for, “You’ve got to be %$#@^&%*$& kidding me.”
Anyone reading Unorganized Territory for the first time last week may have been puzzled that I spent editorial column inches to extol the virtues of my camera bag that doesn’t look like a camera bag. But regular readers know that they never know what they will find when they start reading.
Unorganized Territory is an unorganized corner of the paper where for 14 years I’ve had the privilege to share random thoughts on the people and places of Cook County, on my friends and family, on local and sometimes national politics and sometimes on something utterly silly, like how grateful I am to have found the perfect camera bag.
However, I thought I should add the true reason that my camera bag was the first thing that came to my mind when I sat down to write Unorganized Territory last week. It was one of those “You don’t know what you’ve got ’til it’s gone” situations.
You see, my wonderful Kelly Moore camera bag broke last week. I was devastated. I was hurrying to work and when I grabbed ahold of the sturdy long leather strap to toss it over my shoulder, messenger style—it came loose. There I was with my 32-pound bag, dangling lopsided onto the floor.
I know it is incredibly silly to get attached to inanimate objects, but I almost cried. I had hoped that my camera bag would last for years and years. The thought of having to start the search for a new camera bag all over again was almost too much to bear on an already overscheduled day.
Fortunately, my dear husband Chuck was right there to see the strap failure. He took the bag away from me and investigated as I stood by trying to decide whether to kick something or cry. As I imagined the hassle of temporarily transferring all my belongings into another bag or somehow rigging the handle back on with duct tape and carabiners, he calmly looked at where the strap came apart.
To my delight, he said, “It’s fixable.” All we needed, he said was a tiny little c-clip thing.
Normally in our couple dynamic, I am the calm one and Chuck is the over reactor. There was a bit of role reversal here as I immediately assumed we would have to order the piece or make a trek to Duluth. Not to worry, Chuck said. They probably have it at Buck’s Hardware!
We headed to Buck’s, me carrying my heavy brown bag like a football, to a shelf with a miraculous assortment of the tiniest little metal bits and pieces you have ever seen. And there, lo and behold, was the part that was needed. And it only cost 32 cents!
I happily paid for the part and Chuck squeezed the clip in place and my bag was once again good as new. And appreciated more than ever.
If you cannot be grateful for what you have received, then be thankful for what you have been spared.
Spaghetti Squash with Chicken, Pears & Parmesan Delicate curls of spaghetti squash stand in for traditional pasta in this cheesy chicken dish. For extra bite, serve with a toasted whole-grain baguette.
By Lisa Howard
Hands-on time: 30 minutes
Total time: 45 minutes
- 3 lb spaghetti squash, quartered and seeded
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts, trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch-thick strips
- 1 Bosc pear, cored and sliced 1/4 inch thick (TIP: To prevent sliced pear from browning, place in a bowl of cold water; drain when ready to use.)
- 1 tsp dried sage
- 2 tbsp minced fresh chives
- 3 oz shaved Parmesan cheese
- Preheat oven to 375°F. Place squash cut side up on a foil-lined, rimmed baking sheet. Add 1/4 inch water to sheet. Bake until edges are golden brown and squash is easily pierced with the tip of a sharp knife, about 35 minutes. Set aside until just cool enough to handle.
- In a large nonstick skillet, heat oil on medium. Add chicken and cook for 2 minutes. Flip chicken and add pear and sage. Sauté, stirring occasionally, until chicken is cooked through, about 5 minutes. Transfer chicken, pears and pan drippings to a large bowl.
- With 2 forks, scrape stringy squash flesh from skin, separating into strands. Add squash flesh to bowl with chicken mixture. Add chives and toss to combine. To serve, top with cheese.
Nutrients per serving (10 oz chicken-squash mixture and 3/4 oz cheese): Calories: 349, Total Fat: 10 g, Sat. Fat: 4 g, Monounsaturated Fat: 4 g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1 g, Carbs: 32 g, Fiber: 2 g, Sugars: 5 g, Protein: 36 g, Sodium: 460 mg, Cholesterol: 81 mg
Cost for full recipe: $13.92
Clean eating does NOT have to be boring! If you need some help, check out my Lean Bodies nutrition plans!
I’m not really worried about the salt you consume but I am worried about the salt you may sprinkle onto the ground. According to the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency Minnesotan’s need to cut back on salt to help our water sources.
MPCA recommends low-salt diet for Minnesota waters
St. Paul, Minn. – For years, doctors have told people to stick to a low-salt diet. According to the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA), our waters should follow the same advice.
Winters in Minnesota bring slippery roads, parking lots and sidewalks as well as the application of de-icing materials to keep these surfaces safe and ice-free. Road salt, which contains chloride, is the most commonly used de-icer. Chloride from road salt enters lakes, streams, and groundwater after snow melts. Once in the water, it becomes a permanent pollutant and is harmful to fish, insects and plants.
The chloride that enters surface water is eventually carried downward into the aquifers that provide the state’s drinking water, and it can even change the taste of tap water. Over the past five years, the MPCA has assessed the condition of Minnesota’s groundwater as part of the agency’s overall vision for clean water. Key findings of the Twin Cities Metro Area chloride project include:
One-third of wells across the state showed an increase in chloride concentrations.
Groundwater in the Twin Cities metropolitan area is impacted by high chloride concentrations.
27 percent of the metro-area monitoring wells in sand and gravel aquifers had chloride concentrations that were greater than drinking water guidelines set by the United States Environmental Protection Area.
The source of the high chloride concentrations in the Twin Cities and other urbanized areas comes primarily from winter de-icing chemicals.
“Salt is a real threat to water quality,” said Brooke Asleson, chloride project manager at the MPCA. “It only takes one teaspoon of road salt to pollute five gallons of water. If chloride continues to increase in groundwater, more waters will likely exceed drinking water and water-quality standards in the future. We are trying to spread the word that less is more when it comes to applying road salt because at high concentrations, chloride can harm the fish and plant life in our waters.”
Recently, the MPCA announced the draft 2014 Impaired Waters List. There are a total of 44 chloride impairments in the seven-county metro area. Thirty-five of those are new to the 2014 list. Many more waters may also have increasing chloride levels, but are not yet listed because of a lack of data to support the decision. All of the impairments in the metro area are being addressed through the Twin Cities Metro Area Chloride Project. The project also includes a chloride protection plan for all metro-area surface waters.
The MPCA remains concerned about the need to provide safe roads and paved areas, while also protecting water resources from contamination. The agency recommends the following tips for residents and individuals who are responsible for winter pavement maintenance:
Shovel first. The more snow and ice you remove manually, the less salt you will have to use and the more effective it can be. Then, break up ice with an ice scraper and decide if application of a de-icer or sand is even necessary to maintain traction.
Slow down. Drive for winter conditions, and be courteous to slow-moving plows. The slower they drive, the more salt will stay on the road where it’s needed.
More salt does not mean more melting. Use less than four pounds of salt per 1,000 square feet (an average parking space is about 150 square feet). One pound of salt is approximately a heaping 12-ounce coffee mug. And be patient: salt takes time to work. Applying more will lead to unnecessary contamination.
15 degrees is too cold for most salt to work. Most salts stop doing their job when the temperature is below 15 degrees. Instead, use sand for traction in frigid conditions.
Sweep up extra salt. If salt or sand is visible on dry pavement, it is no longer doing any work and will be washed away. The excess can be swept up and reused for the next snow or disposed of in the trash.
To learn more about the groundwater report, visit the MPCA’s website. For more on what you can do to reduce chloride in our waters, or to read more about MPCA’s role on this issue, visit the agency’s Twin Cities Metro Area Chloride Project web page.
~Day Two~ Lake Superior… EVERYTHING!!!
How can you give a gift of the North Shore, for the heart and soul, all year round?? Through ART of course! At Sivertson Gallery and Siiviis we have countless options to fill your Lake Superior fancy: photographs, prints, broadsheets, earrings, paintings, cards and more!
One of our most popular gifts this holiday season is Rick Allen’s “Superior is a Sea” broadsheet. Released just before the Tall … read more
November was a pretty quiet month with very little snow to speak of. The lake did its usual ice dance. Cold nights would leave a skim of ice around the outer edges and back in the shallower bays. After the weak winter sun rose and the wind picked up, the ice would break up into great tinkling chunks and float across the lake, piling up like pancakes with each surge of water. The waves would lap along the shore and coat every surface in a glaze of ice.
Round Lake finally froze over on November 19th. The ice boomed and popped in the quiet as the ice grew. Without snow to mix with the growing ice making it opaque, the black lake surface was smooth. Great fissures could be seen along the surface as the lake tried to break free of winter’s cold grasp.
December arrived with winter’s full furry. A three day blizzard dropped a thick, soft blanket of snow all along the Arrowhead. Those closer to Lake Superior saw multiple feet of snow. Round Lake received 8 – 10 inches which is still a healthy bit for one storm. The first day of snow was sticky and fell without much wind, flocking the evergreens with holiday cheer. Then the snow just kept falling, and falling, and falling.
When the snow stopped, the wind and cold took it’s place. The lake was scoured of snow by the biting wind. It almost looked like the lake was open and had white caps! The temperature rarely rose above zero last week. That this the price we pay in December for clear blue skies and starry nights!
Once the wind chill is back to being reasonable and the temperatures hover above 0, there will be lots of snow to play in. Some of the cross country ski trails in the area are already being groomed ( http://www.gunflint-trail.com/things-to-do/winter/trail-conditions/#xcski) Until then, we stay inside with a mug of cocoa and watch the weather change.
It’s not like you need an excuse to go ice fishing but just in case you do then here’s a great reason. You can help Jessica raise money that will be donated to the National Breast Cancer Foundation through our wonderful Mush for a Cure FUNdraiser on the Gunflint Trail. Jessica has raised thousands of dollars over the years and this will be her 2nd Annual Event. This will be a fun and worthwhile event so we hope you will attend. Feel free to check out the event page on Facebook.
Save a BOOB
Saturday, February 22… All proceeds go to the National Breast Cancer Foundation. Come on out and support a good cause by competing in this fishing contest. Prizes will be awarded.
WHERE?? Island Lake, Cromwell Lake, Woodbury Lake, Eagle Lake, Tamarack Lake
WHEN?? Feb. 22nd 9am-4pm
REGISTRATION?? You must register the day of the contest at the Island Lake Public Access.
FEE: $20 entry fee
PRIZES: The grand prize is a one day professional guided fishing trip and one night free cabin rental at Seagull Creek Fishing Camp on the Gunflint Trail in Grand Marais, MN for 2-3 people. It will be determined by the highest number on your score card. Prizes for the largest fish of each species will be given out also. For proof of the size of the fish, I will give out tape measures at registration. You must take a picture of your fish by the tape measure, for it to count. Catch & Release is encouraged.
Stay tuned for more details. I hope to see you there
If you have any questions/comments feel free to call/text Jessica Berg-Collman at 218-370-1610
Donations sent by mail are also encouraged. Please mail to
12056 Gunflint Trail
Grand Marais, Mn
Camillus has put some of the best materials and craftsmanship into the Les Stroud Knife Series. I really like the overall look of this Les Stroud knife–it’s a nice combination of grey, black and bright green. (You can find it when it is dark out!) More importantly, it has good weight and balance.
Most notably, the blade is made from Titanium bonded 440 stainless steel. The titanium makes this knife very strong and hard, without the brittleness you can find with other stainless steel knives. The knife is very corrosion resistant and boy can it hold an edge! It has a full tang and the sheath is reinforced nylon with a fire starter, flashlight, signalling mirror, and a ceramic sharpener. This is one “do it all” survival knife and it makes a great gift for anyone who enjoys spending time in the outdoors.
The Twelve Days of Sivertson Gift Giving!
Tis the season to be artsy in your gift giving! Here at Sivertson Gallery and Siiviis we are counting down the 12 days until our “Last Elfin’ Saturday Before Christmas” party on December 21st. Check your email, visit our facebook page and read our blog each day for our 12 days of Up North gift ideas from Sivertson Gallery!
~Day One~ MOOSE PRINTS by Liz Sivertson
This week’s “What’s REALLY in our Food” article is about another ingredient that is a danger when drinking soda: Bromiated Vegetable Oil, or BVO. BVO was first patented by chemical companies as a flame retardant. Yes, the same chemical that is used as a flame retardant in pajamas, matresses, etc. is also in some of your favorite sodas. According to this article on mercola.com, bromine has numerous health risks:Health Risks of Bromine
As mentioned, when you ingest or absorb bromine, it displaces iodine. The resulting iodine deficiency can in turn lead to anincreased risk for cancer of the breast, thyroid gland, ovary and prostate — cancers that we see at alarmingly high rates today. This phenomenon is significant enough to have been given its own name: the Bromide Dominance Theory.
Bromine is also toxic in and of itself. It can accumulate in your tissues, central nervous system, and breast milk, resulting in a number of health problems. One 1971 study published in the British Journal of Nutrition concluded that:
“These findings, in conjunction with previous animal studies and with the geographical differences in the use of brominated vegetable oils as food additives, suggest that the high bromine levels found in the fat of tissues from UK children are due to the use of these compounds.”
One 1983 animal study also found that rats receiving one percent BVO in their feed suffered impaired fertility, and at two percent, they became completely infertile.
Bromine is known to act as a central nervous system depressant, and can trigger a number of psychological symptoms such as acute paranoia and other psychotic symptoms. In fact, in an audio interview, physician Jorge Flechas reported that, between 1920 and 1960, at least 20 percent of all hospital admissions for “acute paranoid schizophrenia” were a result of ingesting bromine-containing products. In addition to psychiatric problems, bromine toxicity can manifest as:
- Skin rashes and severe acne
- Loss of appetite and abdominal pain
- Metallic taste
- Cardiac arrhythmias