2002 Echo Lake Lodge Newsletter


P.O. Box 1137                        9699 County Road SS

Red Lake, Ontario P0V 2M0         Amherst Junction, WI 54407

807-727-2543                        715-824-5876 

     (summer)                                                    (winter)


www.echolakelodge.com       tehr@echolakelodge.com


Dear Friends of Echo Lake,


After 4 years of work, the new fieldstone foundation on the main lodge is complete.  (That was a lot of concrete and rocks!)  We started chinking and hope to have the lodge bug-free soon.  In memory of Hank and Marcy Faess one room will be “restored” to replicate the bedrooms as they were in the original log cabins.  The old cushion/ice shack has been demolished.  On that site the footings are in and the flooring is down for the new “trading post”.   The Bar-B-Q pit was rebuilt using a huge flat rock found behind Moose.  Cabin #4 is now history and sadly, half of #5 and the shower house are all that remain of the old original cabins.  The shed behind Black Bear was moved to let in more light and will be used for storage. 


We now have 4 new Honda 8-hp 4-stroke motors on Detour.  That means no more mixing gas and you can now talk to and easily hear your fishing partner in the front of the boat.  Everyone agrees that they were an excellent addition.  We plan to be fully compliant with 4-strokes by 2006. 


Thanks to the logging roads, we were able to portage and explore 2 new lakes this summer.  We were also able to get to Onnie in an “easier” way.  We were excited to see a Great Gray Owl and a Lynx in camp this summer.  The owl was sighted about 4 times and some guests had the opportunity to see it close up with binoculars.  In September, Tom and a few guests saw the Lynx for about 5 minutes on the large rock across the narrows from the boat dock.  Pine marten, fisher, eastern and red-sided garter snakes, moose, caribou, meadow larks, and skunks were seen throughout the summer.


We can sum up June, August and September by “wind and rain.”  We had rain 15 days in a row in June.  It rained all 7 days that the Lemke/Swisher group was in camp.  Unfortunately, the rain was accompanied by 35-40 mile an hour winds.  The wind blew even harder in August giving us lots of firewood and trails to clear.  July was “hot, hot, hot!”  Nevertheless, everything seemed to be about 2-3 weeks late this summer.  The fishing was great once the water warmed up in late June.  The largest fish of the season were:   28” 8# Lake Trout – Randy Luedtke,  30” 10# Walleye – Don Sill (Released), Tie for largest Northern – 39” 14# Northern – John Hayes and Dan Griffin.


Hunters harvested 5 Black Bear this fall: 4 boars and a sow.  The largest was  300# shot by Ron Mrochinski.  Don Kropidlowski shot a nice 275# chocolate brown.  Our first woman hunter was Debbie Augustinak.  When the bear walked directly under her tree, it was no less than 4 feet from the base of her stand.  She was successful in shooting the 225# female on her first hunting attempt.  See pictures of these bear on our website.  Several larger bear were sighted, but must have gone nocturnal during the last two weeks of season. 


On July 4th we saw a corona around the sun and knew what it was thanks to a crossword puzzle clue in rainy June!  (aureole)  The blueberries and raspberries were not ripe until the beginning of August.  The water levels were so low that it was necessary to actually get out of the boat and drag it through some spots to portage to Black Beaver.  As a result, very few fishermen made the trip. 


Thanks to all of our guests for keeping the cabins so clean.  This really helps to make the Saturday guest exchange go smoothly.  Due to our considerate guests, we will continue our Saturday-to-Saturday booking schedule.  As you may be aware, many lodges have gone to Saturday-to-Friday bookings to allow for cleaning.


Scott Hinrichs was the first brave swimmer this season (6/13/02).  He said the water wasn’t too bad—he just thought he was going to have a heart attack!!  Don Griffin took a very cool double-dip on September 25th.  Mike Peploe was the first guest to ever attempt the Detour portage in his bedroom slippers.  Neither rain nor storm nor hail kept John Rassler’s group from their pursuit of walleyes.  I’d like to know what John Hayes had for breakfast the day he caught a lake trout on his way out to get supper and an even nicer one (4# 23”) on his way back in.  Then after supper he pulled in a 39” 14# northern.  That was quite a day!   Maslowski’s forgot their fishing poles but remembered the microwave popcorn. 


We would like to thank guests who send us letters, e-mails and videos of their trip after they return home.  It is always fun to hear what game you saw on the drive out, the names of good restaurants that you stopped at on the way home and to hear that you had a safe trip home.  Thanks to those who took the time to send a letter, pictures or an e-mail.  If anyone has a nice picture suitable for the website, please send it and we will post it. 


We found a roll of Advantix film in “Moose.”  It looks like it could be exposed.  If it is yours, let me know and we’ll send it to you. 


We are aware that some guests have experienced delays of inadmissibility to Canada this past summer due to minor criminal offenses in the US.  To answer some of your questions we are sending information from the NWOTA website.  (See page 4.)  You can access other current information at www.nwota.com/offences.htm 


As always, our mailing list guests have first priority to make reservations for Summer 2003.  So we encourage you to reserve your trip to Echo Lake Lodge as soon as your group has finalized plans.  We ask that you put ˝ down when making your reservation and require the remainder by May 1, 2003. 


We are already looking forward to a great season next summer. We are planning to get the lodge finished: chinked and stained.  We are considering a camp fish fry on Wednesday nights.  Tom will fry the fish and we can all enjoy an evening in the lodge.  If you have any other suggestions, please drop us a note or e-mail.  Tom would also like to finish the new log cabin. He already named it the ‘Trading Post.”  He is now planning to build a gazebo in front of Caribou.  He will also be shingling Black Bear, Caribou and the lodge next summer. 


Thanks again for your business.  Wishing all of you a joyous and safe holiday season. 


From the Wisconsin Loon’s Nest,

Tom, Mitzi, Dave, Dan, Karen and Bandit  J