Black's Cliff Resort's Birch Bark Blog

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

No comments

IMG_4025

The trail was calling out name on a warm fall day.  This is the paved bike trail that runs through the Raven Trail in Woodruff.  The trail starts at Indian Mounds in Tomahawk and runs through this beautiful part of the Raven Trail through old growth forests.  My sister is not a fan of the destruction to parts of the Raven Trail to make this paved trail…. but Troy and I sure enjoyed biking down it.  You can’t beat the scenery.  The Raven Trail portion is hilly but it flows nicely with down hills before uphills most of the time.  We biked 2 miles both ways  and it flew by

IMG_4021

The colors were amazing on the trail

IMG_4018

There was this blurry guy behind me chasing me down the trail LOL

IMG_4023

We parked the bikes at the Clear Lake Boat landing

IMG_4022

Clear Lake

IMG_4024

Can’t beat the colors!

I just added some specials through the end of October if you check out the availability chart at www.blackscliff.com

 

 

No comments

IMG_3989

The woods are slowly getting more colorful.  Next week the colors should really get going

IMG_3972

Warmer temps and lots of late night campfires around the resort.  Ted and Jackie enjoying great times around the fire with Dan and Steph Christian.  Nothing like wine and a good fire and friends to get through this crazy year

IMG_3994

Other folks find pumpkin carving a great release too.  Julie Richards decorated Birchwood with this great pumpkin

IMG_3999

I was enjoying and relaxing with one of those great warm fall afternoons on the deck.  Nothing like the clickty clack of the sock machine and a good old dog.  The red squirrels were the only distraction this afternoon.  Their chatter from the trees

IMG_3999

No comments

IMG_3939

It is that time of the fall when you see little glimmers of color that hint at what is coming soon

IMG_3941

Looking out off Bear Den’s dock.  That shoreline will be a beautiful yellow in 2 weeks

IMG_3942

IMG_3935

Lots of rain coming in 2 days ago.  Troy and I pulled out the paddle boats so we would not have to bail them.  Bailing paddle boats on cold September mornings is not my idea of fun.  Much nicer this way

IMG_3943

We have sent many guests to enjoy our little oasis in Minocqua.  Dorwin Park is a hidden gem along side the Minocqua Museum.  It is off the main strip and hidden on a side street.  We have gotten together outside many times here this summer enjoying coffee and sandwiches with family and friends.  We will miss Dorwin Park when it gets colder out.  We grab our goodies from Great Northern Coffee Traders and head straight to our spot for a safe outdoor spot to enjoy a few laughs and good times.

October, November and December reservations are in full swing.  We may be full in September but we do have some October spots open.  Don’t wait long as the phone has been ringing.  

I do have one spot left in September into October.  Kaubashine Sept 28th to leaving on October 2nd

Starting November 1 we are putting in place the 24 hour hold between reservations that we are guaranteeing.  This we hope continues to keep our cleaning crew and guests safer when we have the furnaces on and windows closed.  November 1, we will also be extending out check out from 9 am to 11 am since we are not cleaning cabins the day you are leaving.  All sauna lovers in the winter we will sadly have it closed this winter until COVID is under wraps.  

IMG_3919

Cool September weather has hit.  The lake fog is back

IMG_3920

IMG_3921

Color peaking through the greenIMG_3892

We had lots of groups out enjoying a fire

IMG_3893

Nothing says Labor Day like good food around a weber grill

IMG_3886

Troy is still getting our TV system to come back after the lightening strike a couple of weeks ago.  We called in Joe the TV dude to help.  Joe found a few more places the lightening stuck, including some connections in our basement.  We have gotten the local channels out to the cabins.  Our satellite is still not broadcasting to the cabins.  The lightening shattered the COAX output from our satellite receiver to the cabins.  The HDMI output still works but the output to the cabins is still COAX cable.  Right now the cabins get the 12 or so local channels and we are working on trying to figure out the satellite

IMG_3903

Troy has put up a few TV antennae receivers around the resort to get better reception.  Eagles Nest and Holiday got them on their roofs.  Eagles Nest cable we figure is fried from the lightening.  We had splitters and amplifiers under Shamrock blown apart from the strike that took the signal to Eagles Nest

IMG_3896

Part of our cleaning crew celebrated with margaritas after Labor Day cleaning.  We made it so far through COVID19 in one piece and smelling like bleach

IMG_3900

Mack just takes it all in stride.  He has partially torn ACL and is on partial bed rest for a few more weeks.  

On to fall!.  You will notice we are almost 100 percent booked in September and October is filling up fast.  If you are looking for some time away in a sparkling clean cabin give a call.  The COVID busters are on the prowl keeping the cabins clean and as COVID free as we can make them

 

IMG_3833

We took a little trip away from the resort to Firefly campground with Mack by Boulder Junction.  Mack enjoyed looking out at Firefly

IMG_3849

Close to Firefly is Fallison Nature Trail.  We send lots of guests each year to hike Fallison.  The wonderful thing about Fallison is most of the time you are hiking with lake views around the lake

IMG_3835

You can’t beat views like this 

IMG_3837

Or views like this 

IMG_3840

Mixed up with amazing red pines

IMG_3836

Lots of steps 

IMG_3847

Throw in talking to a loon.  Fallison is the perfect long lake for loons to take off and nest on

IMG_3848

IMG_3843

We took a few minutes to find a Geocache we found 10 years ago in the same spot

IMG_3860

Back to Firefly Lake for a beautiful sunset

Troy and I enjoyed this quick get away.  September just hit 90 percent full in the cabins so we are recharged and ready to clean cabins for the next 2 months.  We have throughly enjoyed so far 7 little trips this summer in our RV to little get aways like this.  Don’t be surprised if once in awhile when you are here you see the boys watching the resort or Steve’s number on the door while we take off for a little R and R

If you want a nice hike Fallison Nature Trail is a must do when you are in the area

IMG_3778

Mornings like this on Lower Kaubashine are the best.  Crystal clear and calm 

Gavin was out floating in his boat enjoying some quiet moments at the lake

IMG_3782

I found out it was swim across the lake morning for his wife Tina and daughter inlaw.  Absolutely beautiful morning for a swim.  

Tina worked for us about 30 years ago helping out at the resort.  She has stayed in contact with us and has brought her family to the resort many times over the years.  Always nice to see her and her family.  

IMG_3781

Swim Tina Swim!

IMG_3750

We had a sad goodbye to John and Barb Ellis.  They have been staying in Birchwood since 2001 in August.  We are happy they have their own little cabin on a lake now but will miss them as guests.  I know Mack will miss Barb’s ear rubs and treats.  Good luck John and Barb!  Hope to see you in the offseason for skiing or hiking  Enjoy your new cabin

IMG_3753

In other news we had a lightening strike in the resort Friday  It blew up this maple tree.  This is by the playground on the road to Eagles Nest.  Our cable lines from our satellite dishes pass by close to this area.  The lightning blew up those lines and entered our house and fried our TV system that sends out TV signal to the cabins.  Troy is doing his best to get things back on.  

We had the smell of burnt electronics in our house.  It blew apart all the TV splitters and amplifiers in the house.  Troy has had to dig a new cable line.  We are slowly getting things back to normal.  Our internet routers were also damaged to our house and at Eagles Nest.  We had folks through the resort that night see sparks in the air.  It was quite an event

IMG_3754

61980133470__E5319B0C-2997-4FD2-9AEB-67E0B859F4EA

If you can see in the picture the lightening blew out the roots of the tree.  Thankfully the tree was mostly dead anyway.  It was not a maple we tap for sap

IMG_3773

At the sock shop I had a delivery of hand painted super wash merino yarns arrive.  They were hand dyed by my friend Hilly Jacklin in Missouri.  They are absolutely beautiful.  I will be posting pictures of what these make up on Jenny’s Sock Shop Instagram and Facebook pages.  Check them out to see what I make.  See a color you love and want to see it in a particular sock size or gloves let me know I am taking requests

Black’s Cliff is also on Instagram as well.  Keeping Facebook, Instagram and the blog up to date is a challenge.  

COVID Update:  We will be guaranteeing 24 hours sit time between reservations starting November 1 to May 15th.  We think this is a good safety measure for our guests as well as our cleaning crew (who is mainly our family).  We are doing everything we can to keep Black’s Cliff a safe place for people to come to during COVID and keep our family healthy

IMG_3723

Beautiful late summer morning at the lake

IMG_3714

Red squirrels have been starting to harvest their pinecones.  They are nasty little buggers.  This one was literally dropping pinecones all afternoon on our deck from above.  It was returning for the spoils.  It was aggressively chattering for Mack and I to get off the deck

IMG_3715

It went out to the end of the table and chattered at Mack who promptly ignored it

C076A154-9A0F-4A94-9C25-B5C238CEAEC0

Our great guard dog on duty.  Troy further pissed off the squirrel by picking up all the spoils off the deck and hiding them in the house

IMG_3696

Big thank you to all the folks who dropped off pop tabs this summer.  Our usual family did not have room for them in their car to take to Minneapolis.  I have another guest who works at the Madison Ronald McDonald House.  That is where this years went.  Theresa told me that pop tabs for her Ronald McDonald house amount to about 10,000 a year and they really appreciate the donation.  

IMG_3697

Keep bring them with you on vacation and dropping them off.  I will always make sure they make it to a deserving Ronald McDonald House.  You never know how great this place is till you need it.  We used one twice with our middle son years ago and have never forgotten how important they are for families who need them

IMG_3726

In other news it was fun watching Troy and Jake move the raft around to its correct spot in a stiff wind.  There was some rearrangement happening but the raft got put back in its spot

IMG_3711

This is one of my favorite pics this summer.  Father and son feeding bluegills worms.  These two were having quite a good time together playing with the bluegills.  This is what vacation is all about moments like this with your family.  

IMG_3708

Anybody who likes Amy’s goat milk soaps in the cabins I have just added her soaps to www.jennyssockshop.com  They can be ordered both regular and felted soaps.  She has over 20 scents listed on the site.  check them out.  I also have finally gotten half of my scarves up on the site.  Currently all the socks, gloves and half of the scarves are current on the site.  I have hats to do after I am done with scarves

IMG_3695

Wiped out from squirrel defense

IMG_3664

Troy and I got away for another adventure in our RV.  We headed to lake Superior and had a great couple of days along the lake and walking up a few streams and a few water falls.  We are happy too be enjoying some adventures in our travel trailer.  Jake and Sarah took the reins for us for a couple of days and we appreciate them for doing that

IMG_3586

Back at the resort it was movie time.  This time a fun Disney movie for all the littles we have running around the resort this week

IMG_3655

Lots of kids not much taller than the tether ball this week

IMG_3654

Hard to play tetherball when the ball chases you around the pole

IMG_3656

Big sisters watching from afar with lots of tetherball advice

IMG_3660

Then off to the races on the horse swingings

IMG_3575

A big thank you this summer to our movie gurus, Ben and Grant.   They had the idea of making a drive in on the playground.  They have hosted and got the movies going all summer with many technical difficulties that were beyond mom and dad.  Thanks Ben and Grant!  Grant is off to college for year 3 soon and Ben is still hoping for an accounting job.  Both are done with the Zipline for the summer which I am thankful for

IMG_3565

Thanks to all who dropped off pop tops.  These are headed to the Ronald McDonald house soon.  I have a Ronald McDonald house person who works at one coming this week.  I will let you know which house she is taking them to.  Keep them coming!  Bring them along with you when you come and I will get them in the right direction.  You never know how special Ronald McDonald Houses are till you need one

IMG_3566

Bellas Jump ropes she makes with Steve have found a display outside the office.  Stop and Check them out.  They are 10 dollars and the best jump ropes around

61878642817__EDC57223-0E26-492E-BD30-20602B6717CC

The sock machine has been humming along  Everyday I have been adding more stuff to the sock shop website.  www.jennyssocksshop.com is the site.  I share pictures on the sock shop Facebook and Instagram pages of what is being added.  It is kinda fun to see if you are interested in the sock shop.  I also have put a video of the peddling machine working.  Right now I have all the socks and fingerless gloves on the site.  I will be adding more ankle socks, scarves and hats hopefully this week.  

IMG_3598

Busy life at the resort we enjoy but moments like this are priceless.  That is Troy not working and enjoying sand between his toes

I forgot to mention the Resort also just got an instagram page along with the sock shop both are listed on Facebook and Instagram 

IMG_3478

Cooler temps have made for some great campfire nights.  We got our budgie pie makers out with white bread and fruit pie filling, blueberry, apple and cherry.  Cherry is my favorite

IMG_3480

Cooking my cherry pie with cinnamon and sugar topping

IMG_3473

The Michael Family happy to all be together.  No corona cooties in this picture just happy grandkids thrilled to be with Grandma and Grandpa after everyone tested negative.  Lots of peace of mind in this picture and for now no need to social distance with the family!  

IMG_3474

The Eberle and Rynearson crew enjoying their own fire

IMG_3477

Everyone else in the resort was happy to grab their bubble of people and head to the playground for The Great Outdoors

IMG_3471

The sock machine has been whirling.  

61826701484__C09A9A81-BE4F-4CED-A3AA-A264C354B6B3

Grant and I have continued to be busy putting all the socks on to www.jennyssockshop.com  

The Sock Shop and the resort both got an Instagram account this week.  If you are on Instagram or Facebook both of them are on.  Instagram is a new thing for us.  A pretty resort picture goes up each day and on the Sock Shop you can see what is made each day.  Things are always changing in the Sock Shop.  I have yet to add my hats and scarves but all the socks and almost all the fingerless gloves are on the site.  I have already shipped out a few orders.  You can choose local pick up too if you want me to save something for an upcoming visit to the resort

IMG_3495

After all that a strawberry margarita outside at El Tarasco Mexican Restaurant was a great way to celebrate after lots of hard work was done online and off

IMG_3446

A few year ago a guy and a gal met and had three girls.  Dan and Steph brought Jaimie, Melanie and Laurie to the resort since they were babies.  Dan’s whole family enjoyed summers at there resort even before the girls came along.  Dan’s parents, Wills and Lou Christian started the the tradition with their kids before these girls were even a glimmer in their dads eye

They have enjoyed their time at the resort every summer.  Through Cabbage Patch Doll days, teenage drama, marriages and now the next generation.  

During the year of COVID I think it is important to see families making the changes needed to enjoy time together.  Each week I see families quarantining or social distancing so they can enjoy time together either close or 6 feet apart

IMG_3438

Melanie and Laurie loaded up with their girls with husbands and Luca in another car on their way to the resort!

They had quarantined the best they could to enjoy time with grandma and grandpa

IMG_3445 (1)

Jaimie and Nathan coming from their corner of the US also quarantining getting ready for vacation with their boys

Vacation would be different but everyone was coming together.  Maybe not hugging and maybe 6 feet apart but together none the less in their favorite spot that everyone learned to value just a little bit more with what they all went through this year

IMG_3393

Grandma here we are!

IMG_3394

All the sacrifice to stay cootie free to visit grandma and grandpa is worth it for this picture

IMG_3433

Steph with happiness in her eyes enjoying her grandkids

IMG_3437

Family pontoon boat ride was a high light

IMG_3443

Auntie Jaimie with Nyla.  The smiles say it all.  Value this time 

IMG_3440

Nathan giving directions to Holly to drive him.  This was a huge moment for Nathan to give up the drivers seat…

IMG_3442

But worth it to get this picture of him and Brad cruising around the lake

There were many skiing firsts.  First salomns, first skis, and first times driving the boat.  All an important time in 2020 to make the rest of 2020 bearable

IMG_3436

Time at the dock with coffee and the sunrise… with a sister or 2

IMG_3435

The smile after conquering the fear of muskies to swim across the lake.  Way to go Melanie!   Just swim fast and the muskies won’t nibble on your toes

IMG_3434

Go Melanie go!  Her first swim across the lake ever!  Never to late to do something you have wanted to do for years

Makes 2020 good memory!

IMG_3439

Great rides in the red boat!  Beats rush hour around New Orleans any day!

IMG_3395

Social distancing with others at the lake.  The Berchtold family stopping by to talk with everyone.  Boats were the perfect way to social distance with folks not in the family.  

IMG_3432

Dogs just don’t get social distancing….

IMG_3431

So congrats to the Christian family for finding their way through COVID 19 to still enjoy time together.  We have all learned times like these are to be valued and will help them get through teaching reading to a 1st grader, figuring out how to get a trumpet to not to exude respiratory droplets, what travel trailer to buy to visit family, how to get a college up and running in COVID, not to have nightmares of muskies chasing toes through the water, are among just a few things that will challenge this crew as soon as they leave to return in 2021

See you again in 2021 for another summer of memories.  May everyone’s trip around the sun till we meet easier after a week on Lower Kaubashine

This is just one families journey coming to the resort that I see every week.  Everyone has their own comfort level and bubble of people in their COVID circle.  I am sharing their journey but there are many more I could that are just as special.  Vacation is different in many ways but in many good ways just the same you just have to fill in the blanks safely