I’m BAAAAACK! Have had that awful sinus stuff turning into bronchitis, never again will I spread straw around after weeding the garden without wearing a mask. It’s been THREE WEEKS, really hard to get anything done, so I’ve not been doing anything, and I’m still hacking and wheezing, but have had 3 days now with only one episode of coughing up a lung in the middle of the night, so finally getting some sleep. That said, I’ve had camping reservations since last winter, so off we went with the Wawona 6 with its roomy vestibule “office!”

Spent the better part of a week at Clubhouse Campground, in the Chippewa National Forest, and it’s a great spot. Fishing reigns, and boats of all sorts, pontoons, kayaks, canoes, in addition to the big fishing boats pulled by big pickups (and big travel trailers to match). There were few during the week, maybe 4-5 sites occupied in each of the north and south loops. It’s cheap, and with the senior pass, 1/2 price! Reservations and more info: Clubhouse Campground.

I had wanted to go up there for years, and at long last, so off we went. Why? Here we are, sitting at Clubhouse Lake, looking east to the other side, at the huge chunk of land my father used to own, lots of lakeshore and quite a ways back into the woods.

From the info I got after my mother died, the land is highlighted on Itasca County map, with “Sold 1955?” written in — close, because my father brought a tree from the land and planted it in our backyard, house bought in 1955. I just can’t get over that he sold that land!!!!

We had a direct path from our campsite, #14, down to the lake on the other side of the loop:

The story is that the guy who owned the land just to the north, which “My Lake Road” went through to access my father’s property, would not allow access. Don’t know if there was an easement, or if that was a public road — now it is open to the many parcels along the shore (the plot was divided up decades ago, I think it was then “Lot 9” and has since been split up, and it’s hard to tell, his parcel may have extended all the way to that bold line to the east:

We went down Clubhouse Lake Road to My Lake Road and to the end of the road:

It’s in Itasca County, where I spent a lot of time circa 2005-2010 during the fight against the Excelsior Energy Mesaba Project. Like Freeborn County, it’s a home away from home. We checked out the North Star campground, also in Chippewa Nat’l Forest, just south of Marcell on 38, which also has lakeshore sites, and there are so many more campgrounds in the forest:

Camping in Chippewa National Forest

We also went to many of the sites on the “Edge of the Wilderness” trail, which really isn’t much — this is the “Scenic Overlook” SNORT!

The “Lost Forty” was worthwhile, 40 acres of trees that clear cutting missed due to survey error, so the old growth remains. More picnic tables, please!! A while back a youtube had appeared about it, can’t seem to find that one, but here’s another:

Back in the Mesaba Project daze, I’d learned that the Joyce Estate was up there, really odd considering that the Joyce Foundation was a massive funder of coal gasification promotion. The proposed site for the Mesaba Project was about 10 miles as the crow files from the Joyce Estate. What on earth were they thinking??

I wasn’t up for a long hike, any exertion sets me coughing and wheezing, so we’ll get there another time.

Little Sadie loves camping, and takes her job as pre-wash cycle seriously, almost as seriously as her napping.

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