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Sunday, July 27, 2014

Wayne Gets Indoctrinated

For our July getaway last weekend Wayne picked me up at the end of my workday on Wednesday.  It was so funny to lock the front door and see the truck and camper parked on the side of the street in Lake Geneva!  He wanted to get a jump start on our drive to Manitowoc so we went as far as Ottawa Lake campground at Kettle Moraine for a night.  Wayne has actually never camped or hiked there, it's where I usually go when he's working overtime.

There really isn't a bad site at Ottawa Lake, but some are more big rig friendly than others so be careful when choosing your site.  When we got up in the morning we headed over to the Scuppernong Trailhead for a short hike on the red trail.


I spotted a few new wildflowers blooming, and the butterflies were busy checking them out as well.   We were busy reapplying Bug-Me-Not because our friendly Wisconsin mosquitoes just can't leave us alone this year.

Thanks to Sherry's blog I thought I had this butterfly identified as Aphrodite Fritillary, but when consulting the Wisconsin Butterflies website to be certain I just got more confused.  Aphrodite or Great Spangled?  Both?  I thought flower identification was hard, but as long as the leaves and the blooms match it's usually pretty obvious.  The plant they were paying so much attention to was much more easily identified as Heal-All.

Not just Heal-All was blooming, Wild Bergamot had just opened along with lots of asters.  I picked the leaves and crushed them to smell them and was surprised to discover it didn't smell the same as the Bee Balm in my garden.  The wild variety smelled more like oregano than mint to me.

The Solomon's Seal berries caught my attention along the path as well.  I wonder what they'll look like when I go hiking on Tuesday with Barbara and Ron?

Back at the campground a young ground squirrel got chased out of the underbrush while we were hooking up to leave and lost sight of its mother.  Luckily my camera was handy on the front seat of the truck and I was able to catch a couple of shots while it looked for her.

Concerned it might run under us as we tried to leave I inched closer and closer until it darted off into the foliage behind our campsite.  I'm assuming a family reunion soon followed.

This weekend has been noisy at our house.  Not inside, but outside.  Loud music, helicopters,'s that one dreaded weekend of the year - Country Thunder.  It used to be that things were quiet and everyone was pulling out on Sunday morning but the party now lasts until 10:00 p.m. on Sunday.  The helicopter rides are a new annoying addition as well.  I tried to leave this morning to go into town to get a birthday cake for Cory but couldn't get out of the subdivision.  Can you believe I actually had to raid the cupboards and freezer and cook everything from scratch?  The horror! Cory's out now delivering pizza in the town on the other side of the festival, hopefully most of his deliveries are not in the danger zone.   Usually we're gone for the "invasion" but they scheduled it later than normal this July.  You can bet next year I'm checking their website when I schedule our July getaway.  Tomorrow morning I can cross the road like I usually do and run down the lonely country road that divides the "campgrounds" (Click the link above and go to picture #24)....if I don't mind the smell of garbage and porta-potties.  Maybe I'll run somewhere else for a few days.


  1. I'm a little confused. Did all the noise happen at Kettle Moraine or at Manitowoc? Manitowoc was one of my favorite places to go in the late 60's. It was the true north woods. Have things changed that much?

  2. Situations like that - Country Thunder invading your space, I always try to think of a worse situation. It could have been rap. (notice I didn't add the word "music" for the "R" word hardly qualifies as music). So now, Country Thunder isn't as bad as it was before, eh?

  3. It'll be great having our own personal wild flower expert. They sure are abundant this year.

  4. Before moving to the condo, we always had to double-check for the seemingly never-ending "Rod Runs" in Pigeon Forge before planning a trip to the mountains. Now that we enter the mountains from the "quiet side," it isn't so much of an issue, but I hear you loud and clear!