Black's Cliff Resort's Birch Bark Blog

The projects, chores, and life of a family-owned, Northern Wisconsin resort.


We had a wonderful night out with about 1/2 of the resort at The Hazelhurst Pub.  I will not say what was being toasted here as, what happens in Wisconsin stays in Wisconsin.  It is hard sometimes to find a restaurant for 16 people to sit at one table.  The Pub made room for us.  Everyone enjoyed the start to a great vacation


Followed it up with a pontoon boat cruise with Apple Loonshine Wine served in red cups

The loons and baby were spotted but not a good picture of them


Here is the end of the day and for many more ahead on Lower Kaubashine


We spent a cool summer solstice swimming at the lake late at night.


It has been a cool week and everyone has been making trips to the woodshed


The Kloida family enjoying a cool evening around the fire.  Everyone would love it to be warmer but it is not stopping families from enjoying time together


Steve and Troy have spent time this week fixing up the canopy pontoon with new carpet.  It should make it in the lake next week


Katie has spent a the cooler days working on some paintings to sell in the office.  This owl is 85 and joins her luna moth, dragon fly, robins and loons in the office.  Stop by the office to see her art work.  She takes requests for orders if you have an animal you are looking for

We just booked out the last cabins for summer and are now full up to Sept 4th.  Give a call for openings after Labor Day


We had a rainy and sunny week at the resort this week.  Just when the lake levels start going down we get more rain, so the lake is still up.  The changing weather has made for lots of pretty pictures.  The blooming flowers on the hill have enjoyed the rain.  The mosquitos have not been bad so far but we are waiting with all this rain to see what happens with them


We had lots of folks fishing last week.  This was my favorite sight.  Three generations of Urbaniak fishing ladies headed to the lake with their worms


With all the fishing has come a bit of a smelly dumpster.  Everyone tries their best in these heavy fishing weeks to double bag or bury their fish remains.  We still manage to have to come up with creative ways of keeping the dumpster from stinking.  Ashes from the fireplaces, baking soda and a tarp have been what works the best.  We are very happy when the dumpster is picked up


With all the wet weather we have had lots of roofs to keep clean.  Jake got the task this week of blowing off all the roofs


Activity picked up this week at the beach with the arrival of the Johnson Family.  The sisters bonding in the kayak learning to paddle together as they argued who was steering


Their older brother and sisters forming a heart with their arms at the raft


Then the big jump in.  Summer is here

Now to dry the lake out a little


Very exciting time for our family. Jake and his fiancé Michelle graduated from Lawrence University in Appleton this weekend.  A very big congrats to them.  They are graduating with degrees in Biology and Religious Studies.  Both are also getting their teaching certificates and are starting out in Appleton next fall finishing up their student teaching and then heading off into he working world teaching.  They are returning to the Minocqua Area and will be helping out at the resort this summer along with their other jobs before their wedding August 5th.  Very proud of these two and happy as they start their lives together


Our expanding family we could not be happier


Just as Jake and Michelle received their degrees a storm hit the Northwoods.  We got panicked text messages just after the ceremony from Steve that we might want to hurry home and stop and get a couple more generators for the resort as the area was hit but a major thunderstorm.  We rushed home and bailed Steve out along with a bunch of boats. The lake level once again is at record levels.  We were out of electric for 2 hours along with most the Lakeland Area.  We are ready for some drier days


Calm after the storm


Mack doing his best to lower the lake level. Keep drinking Mack!


The first dunking of a cousin occurred with everyone ready to get in the lake after helping get the resort cleaned up after the storm.  Katie’s twins were easy pickings for older cousin Grant.  Cousin Dunking


Bad stormy weather makes you appreciate nights like this at the lake


It was raft launching day.  They guys were ready and were just missing Paul to help them put it in.  They decided to persevere with out him

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We finally had enough dry days in a row to get the raft painted.  Penny and Steve were off to get it in place

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I am thinking the thought of pushing Steve in the water crossed Penny’s mind

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Raft in place and ready for summer


The crappies were biting this week.  Spawning had them all up on the beds


Conner and Ben hitting the pile of fire pit wood for summer

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We are trying something new this summer.  This is farmer Ann from 3 Brothers Farm here in Hazelhurst.  We will be carrying her farm products at the resort for guests to buy.  She raises Berkshire pigs and chickens.  We will have her bacon, sausage, sausage patties, sausage links, ham steaks, pork chops and Jalapeño and regular bratwurst, and eggs for sale at the resort.  All prices are the same as what she sells them for at Farmer’s Market in Minocqua.  Stop by the office to check out her products.  Ann says her ham steaks are great on the grill drizzled with some maple syrup


Bentley had a big day with Grandma and Grandpa.  Morning started out with Grandpa Mike at Paul Bunyans.  The bear was something he was not too sure about


Bentley was much happier when the donuts came over being close to a bear


When grandpa catches a Northern 2 inches bigger than you are it is a little much for a little guy

Grandpa Mike caught this nice 32 inch northern.  Bentley was just happy the Northern did not get him and grandpa kept him safe


Bentley was much happier when the Northern was on the table.  Grandpa can’t wait till Bentley is big enough to go fishing and catch Northerns with him


Having a lot of fun with the crappies and blue gills that grandma Ruth helped grandpa catch.  Fun to chase them around in the bucket.  Insert sounds of a baby squealing with excitement while trying to catch much smaller fish than the northern.


Time for Bentley to take a nap and fishing with dad.

It was  big day for Bentley and Grandpa not sure who had more fun

Thanks to Grandma Ruth for sharing the pictures of Bentleys big day

See you next time Bentley when grandpa has a Mickey Mouse pole ready to take you out on the lake and find more monster Northerns




It was a beautiful weekend one the lake


The community room was hoping with teenagers playing games til 11 pm.


We were given a beautiful gift by Ruth Grady when she arrived. Ruth spent part of her winter making us a 25 year anniversary quilt.  We loved it!  We have the best guests who become not just guests but friends.  Thanks Ruth we will treasure this quilt and know the work you put into it


Steve and Troy got their final touches on Holiday for its updates.  New screens and paint job were on the list.  They also finished the trim around the screens.  Nice job guys!


I thought this was a fun menu for new ideas around the campfire.  I would love to try a few of these this summer


Beware of the store stealer who haunts all campfires and looks for hand outs

I just updated our availability list on our website adding a few things for the end of August and Labor day

We still have Bear Den open July 14 – 21st and nightly openings up to June 21st



We see the light at the end of the tunnel on the weather.  It has rained everyday since Mother’s Day.  That has caused the water levels to reach record amounts.  My brother in law Bryon took this picture on the Raven Trail in Wooodruff of Clear Lake.  It shows how crazy these water levels are.  They are claiming we will see the yellow ball in the sky later today so we can start drying out


Some of our biggest spring projects are waiting everything from anchors, chairs, docks and cabins in the spring.  With weather like this it has put us far behind in those projects.  We had to get creative and bring the beach chairs in the basement for their annual paint job.  The raft may or may not make it for Memorial Weekend as it needs atleast one good day of drying to get dry enough to paint.


Thankfully projects like putting in the pontoon boat and cleaning it can be done on rainy days.  We have 3 of them in the water so far and running smoothly


Pontoon boats do require one thing to be launched and that is the key…  Had to save these two who were trying to paddle from the launch to the resort and gave up.  They were happy to see me with the key in hand


We have had folks up all month enjoying the cabins.  This was my favorite guest so far stopping in to pay her bill.

We are now booked Saturday and Sunday of Memorial Weekend.  We have nightly openings up to June 21st and we still have Bear Den open July 14 – 21st if anyone is interested check out the website for details on opening on the right side or give a call


Mack would like to know what happened to his safe water free beach last night.  He is very confused


Yesterday the beach wall was nice and safe and today after the storms of the last 2 days the beach has been invaded by water


Wondering where exactly the drop off is and where those darn blue gills are that like to nip him in the back legs


Over by Kaubashine and Shamrock the dock was just about under water.  This is I think the highest I have ever seen the water.


Our new motors almost went under last night.  I am not sure how many inches of rain we got but it was a lot

We also as usual lost electricity for 20 hours.  Happily we got it back about 3 pm today and the boats were all safely bailed out

Hopefully it dries out and we can get back to painting and getting the resort ready.  On a happy note the office building got cleaned out and ready for summer and….


Steve and Troy got a new drain system for Holiday’s Lake Black that occurs during heavy rains.  Hopefully this works well for the next summer draining away Lake Black.  If not see Steve and lodge a complaint




It is still a little quiet in the Northwoods for a few more days


Because it is quiet the guys feel the need to pull things apart.  They were fixing the drainage for Holiday’s lake the appears when we get lots of rain.  We are out of time this year to completely redo the entrance to Holiday but atleast they go the water flowing better for this year.  Next spring they have plans of a new deck and entrance to the cabin


Meanwhile Steve was putting his thinking cap on to finish up the stairs at Norway.  Railings and maybe a seat will be part of the master plan before it is all done this week.  This feels like the project that goes on and on, but it is really looking good


You might have heard we purchased 4 new Evinrude 4 stroke motors for the boats.  Steve and Troy had to break them in and run them through their paces.  Both of them were very happy with the new motors especially Troy.  The motors use less gas and are much quieter than the old ones.

We purchased a 40 horse Evinrude 4 stroke for our ski boat and were amazed the first time we took it out.  You could carry on a conversation with the passanger with out shouting with one another while taking skiers


Taking off for a spin around the lake


Penny was a very happy co pilot with Steve.  Troy has his own boat in the foreground

I posted our remaining openings on our website for summer.  Click on the link on right side.  We are going nightly on our remaining openings through June 21st see the website for details or give a call 715 356 3018