Sawbill Newsletter

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Updated: 3 hours 26 min ago

4/15/14 - Today's Sawbill Lake ice measurement is 31".

Tue, 04/15/2014 - 1:22pm

4/15/14 - Today's Sawbill Lake ice measurement is 31". There was very little progress yesterday. The high temperature was 25F and the low was 13F. The sun did provide a little melting, despite the cold temperatures.

Here are some pictures taken by ice measurement crew this morning:


First the bad news. The Sawbill store still looks like the middle of winter, except for the snow being shed from the metal roof.


Now the good news. Sawbill Creek is wide open, which is a major indicator of impending spring.


Leif Gilsvik hanging out on the old, abandoned bridge across Sawbill Creek.

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Today's Sawbill Lake ice measurement was 33".

Mon, 04/14/2014 - 5:55pm

4/14/14 -

Today's Sawbill Lake ice measurement was 33". A cold snap is definitely slowing down the melting today.


This very fresh wolf scat was near the canoe landing this morning. It made Roy very nervous.

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4/13/14 - Today's ice measurement on Sawbill Lake is 31".

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 12:42pm

4/13/14 - Today's ice measurement on Sawbill Lake is 31".

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4/12/14 - Today's ice measurement is 35" with the top 6" highly degraded and honeycombed.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 12:24pm

4/12/14 - Today's ice measurement is 35" with the top 6" highly degraded and honeycombed. The first ice-out lakes have been reported in southern Minnesota. We are usually about a month later, but it depends entirely on the weather.

We had a nice visit the other day from the new interns at North House Folk School. Former crew member, Jessa Frost, is the program director at North House and Sawbill's own Cindy Hansen works there part time. If you're interested in traditional crafts, you will love North House. - Bill


(Front to back) Emily Derke and Mary Cowen - NH interns, Leif Gilsvik, Jessa Frost, Austin Kennedy - NH intern, and the ever graceful Cindy Hansen. Photo by Nils John Anderson.

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4/11/14 - The first measurement on the countdown to ice-out on Sawbill Lake was taken yesterday.

Fri, 04/11/2014 - 11:24am

4/11/14 - The first measurement on the countdown to ice-out on Sawbill Lake was taken yesterday. 33" of ice was the official reading.


Sawbill crew member Leif Gilsvik puts his back into it for the first daily ice measurement leading to the open water season. Photo by Nils John Anderson.

That said, we've lost at least half our snow pack in the last few days. A high sun, warm winds and temps near 50 have all taken a toll. I estimate an average snow depth of about 18", down form nearly 40" at the beginning of the week. - Bill

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4/8/14 - Cindy and I took our first extended vacation over the last couple of weeks.

Tue, 04/08/2014 - 5:24pm

4/8/14 - Cindy and I took our first extended vacation over the last couple of weeks. We wisely chose to head far enough south that we missed the last several blasts of this bitter Minnesota winter of 2014.


Here is what we had to put up with while the blizzards were raging at home. That's me in the chair to the far right. I think I was napping at the time. - Bill

Here are some recent Cook County West End News from WTIP-FM, North Shore Community Radio:
West End News: March 20th
West End News: March 27th
West End News: April 3rd

In a few days we'll start the daily Sawbill Lake ice report.

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