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Sunday, June 7, 2015

Where the Mosquito is King

Door County is lovely, it really is, but the mosquitoes think it's a great place to go as much as the tourists do.  Any spot where you are not out in the open sun on a piece of sidewalk or steps from the shore with a breeze is prime skeeter habitat.  I had such a good experience at the Blufflands State Natural Area that I wanted to go to two more that were nearby between Fish Creek and Egg Harbor.  The first was Thorp Pond, which sounded really great on the DNR website.  I was looking forward to finding rare slender-leaved sundew and possibly bog buckbean.  I knew those damp loving plants meant I could expect mosquitoes.

Under attack

However, I didn't know they'd be so eager and bloodthirsty I'd hesitate to even get out of the car!  I gathered up as much of my gear as I could before opening the door and then headed down an overgrown path.

The overgrown path quickly turned into a mess of downed trees...

and then disappeared completely.

Once into the woods the mosquitoes got even worse and I was thankful for the cool rainy day which meant I could put up my raincoat hood to try to keep them off me.  Once into the trees it got mucky and the trees got so thick I was afraid I'd get lost so I turned in another direction only to encounter juniper and evergreens so dense I couldn't get through.

After 20 minutes of fighting the vegetation and insects I gave up and turned back.  If none of this description deters you and you want to give it a try put the intersection of Quarterline Road and Quarterline Road East (That is not a typo, both roads have the same name!) and then head to the dead end.  The good news?  Not one tick was climbing around on me, don't know how that's possible but it's true.

White Cliff Fen is located on White Cliff Road.  From downtown Egg Harbor just follow it and enjoy the occasional water view as you drive by the homes of the lucky folks living here.  I looked up one of the homes for sale and it was only a little over 2 million for 154 feet of waterfront property that includes a pool and a 3 bedroom home with 3 fireplaces.  But then again...when I got to the parking pullout with the Door County Land Trust sign the skeeters were waiting for me.  They weren't as plentiful as at Thorp Pond, but I hustled through the loop trail and was thankful that this time there was an actual trail even though it was pretty rough.

Lots of ferns and Wild Sarsaparilla

Some clearing of downed trees would be a good idea to lessen the fuel load if fire occurs

As you all know, I usually love an adventure and to go exploring, but maybe late fall with a sweater and some gloves would be a better time to attempt anything "remote" in Door County.  I even saw a Mosquito Squad van driving around.  Their website  claims they can apply an all natural barrier to your property to repel mosquitoes and even ticks but it has to be reapplied every 2 weeks.  Go ahead and add that to your cost of living in Door County when you are calculating a budget!


  1. Ewww, no thanks! I vote for late fall, with a sweater and some gloves!

  2. I guess you can only hike in the areas aorund the beautiful Great Lakes when the temps are in the 40's or under in order to survive the mosquitoes!!

  3. Ugh - skeeters! Luckily they are only bad here in the mountains right after the snow melts. Usually by August things have dried up enough that they're no longer much of a problem. The worst skeeters I ever encountered were in Denali National Park. That story would make an interesting blog post.....something I should share one of these days.