I am winding up my time here in the North Woods of Minnesota, and I thought I would let you know about a few of the other things that I do when I’m here – besides fishing every day.  

This is an amazing area to see a lot of wildlife up close and personal. Approximately 500 yards from my deck is a bald eagle nest where the eagles have been raising new hatches every year now for the past nine years. The eagles are pretty good at parenting and sharing the food-gathering chores. 

Three families of loons live on the bay. They produce two new chicks each year and swim together as a family unit to protect the newborn chicks until fall, when they migrate from the lake. 

I noticed this summer that a grey wolf pack has moved to our area. No problems with the wolves: There are enough deer, rabbits and other prey for them to feed on.  Speaking of wolves I went to Ely, Minn., to see my son Kyle’s favorite place, the International Wolf Center. This is an amazing place to see a wolf pack up close and learn a great deal about wolves and the myths surrounding them. This would have been Kyle’s 22nd year visiting the Center.

I have seen deer almost every day. The herd looks to be strong and healthy with a lot of new deer. I did witness one event I’ll never forget: An osprey, the most efficient fishing bird of prey, dove down to grab a fish directly in front of the cabin. This time, apparently, he misjudged the size of the fish. The osprey struggled three times to create enough lift from his wings to pick the fish from the lake, but the fish was bigger and stronger and fought to stay in the lake. Finally, the fish won the battle, and the osprey went under for the last time.

The osprey could not simply let go of the fish, because his claws are covered in adhesive-like scales, and his talons have curved hooks at the ends. Once he grabs on, it’s for keeps.

Fishing was really great this year. The northern pike and the bass were just outstanding. It was one of the better years I have had there. I’m looking forward to next year already. Until next time…keep a tight line.

Contact Dick at hookedonfishing@comcast.net.