Thursday 5-23-2024

Greetings and welcome!

I have a few updates and yesterday’s post is below.

First they are having a flea market and live music at the Firelane Bar Saturdays starting this weekend. The flea markets start at 10am and the live music is from 2-6. They have some pretty good bands lined up.

There is also a flea market/vendor’s market at the Crivitz Museum on Saturday. The museum is a block west of McDonalds across from the high school. This is a big fundraiser for the museum.

I saw a few post where deer fawns are being born. Keep your eyes peeled for the new little ones!!

Wednesday’s Update-

Greetings and welcome!
We had a big storm roll through here last night. There were weird clouds, torrential rains, gusty winds and a lot of lightning. The power even went out for almost 40,000 people including many around here. There was no damage that I saw other than some stuff blowing around.


One thing that it did do was bring a lot of rain. Radar estimates are between 1.5-2+ inches. Trails will not be dusty this weekend.

The whitewater rafting will be outstanding this weekend. The Peshtigo River already shot up to about a +12”, an exceptional level for Memorial Day weekend. I would expect it to be over +16 for the weekend, possibly even into the high teens.

The great greening of the land is almost complete. You can’t see into the understory of the woods anymore, and most trees have a pretty full crown. The grass definitely needs cutting. Some of my taller areas have already gone to seed.

The greening of the trees is not lost on the gypsy moths. The tiny caterpillars are everywhere. It is going to be a really bad year for them if you don’t take action.

We have a couple of events this weekend. There is a brat stand at the Super Valu store and the Polaris dealer in Lakewood Saturday afternoon benefiting veterans. There is live music at The Rustic Saturday night. Sunday there is a memorial service and family picnic at the Silver Cliff picnic grounds.


Both Northwoods Bar and the Caldron Falls Bar open today with new owners. The golf course in Lakewood across the street from McCaslin golf course looks like it is more of a mini-golf course than a pitch and putt as I called it in my last update. That should be fun for a lot of people.

The weather for the weekend looks hit and miss. There is rain coming for Friday afternoon and evening, a nice day Saturday, and then rain is possible again Sunday night into Monday. Generally it looks like a pretty nice weekend overall.

That’s it from here. I am off to see if the lawn mower will start.
Have a good weekend and thank you for visiting!
RJB

Tuesday May 14th, 2024

Greetings and welcome!

Spring is springing in a big way now. The green explosion is well under way.
The forest floor is now covered in a new green carpet. All of the trees have emerging leaves now, so get a look while you can. Those woods will be filling in dramatically in the next week or so.

The wildflowers are going off too. In the past week I have seen marsh marigolds, shooting stars, the trillium are just getting started, and the really tiny flowers in the lawn are getting plentiful. The choke cherry trees are in bloom and can be seen just about everywhere. On the domesticated side the flowering crab and lilacs are in bloom too.

The grass will need cutting soon. It is getting long in fast growing areas. When I was in Crivitz yesterday I saw some lawns that were getting long enough that they almost had to be cut.

Our wonderful variety of birds have returned. People are seeing oriels, grosbeaks, humming birds, sand hill cranes and a lot more.

The black bears are becoming a common sight. They will be very hungry with no berries and no grubs to eat, so bird feeders are a prime target at this time of year. Many are seen with 3 or 4 cubs, so we are not short on them. Be sure to store your food and food smell stuff like grills safely.

The spring isn’t lost on the insect world. The gnats started getting thick last week. My first mosquitoes were about two weeks ago. I got my first wood tick yesterday.

The gypsy moth caterpillars have hatched and are little tiny guys for now. It is going to be a really really bad year for them this year.
I sprayed my egg masses (hundreds of them) with a broad spectrum residual insecticide about two weeks ago and I haven’t seen a single one hatch. That’s good because they had a real party planned for my big oak trees. I am still going to respray them and the tree trunks to get ahead of any stragglers.

Here is the stuff that I use. https://diypestcontrol.com/suspend-sc-insecticide . It works for lady beetles, spiders, ants, and just about everything except for one species of German cockroach. It is also safe for people and pets.

A more common treatment is a spray that they call BT. It is a bacillus that makes the leaves toxic to the caterpillars. The bad news is that you need to get it onto the leaves. This means aerial spraying for big trees or large forests.

A treatment that I found about this year is soil drenching. They go around the tree’s drip line and make a series of small holes. They then put a certain termite focused insecticide and an adjuvant in water and drench the soil. The adjuvant helps to spread the treatment to all of the roots.This gets absorbed by the tree and it becomes a systematic insecticide a lot like an immunization.

From the article selling the product.. https://bugspray.com/catalog/insecticide/liquid/prothor-sc
“SOIL DRENCHING DIRECTIONS:

When soil drenching shrubs and trees, use .1 – .2 oz per inch of tree diameter. So 1-2 oz per 10? of tree width. Add the chemical to a 5 gallon bucket filled with 3-4 gallons of water. Make 4-8 holes for every bucket you need to use so for a tree 20? wide, you should use two buckets and 10-15 holes around the tree. Use a stake, something like rebar, to create holes 1-2 feet deep. The liquid should then be poured out over these holes slow enough so the holes will absorb the fluid evenly. Drench within the “drip line” of the tree limbs but not closer than twice the width of the trees trunk to the base of the tree. So if the drip line is 10 feet out from the trunk and the trunk is 2 feet wide. drenching 4-6 feet out from the trunk would be fine.”

Here is the best price that I have found- $71.50. https://store.parsonspestcontrol.com/prothor-sc2-termite-and-ant-control.aspx

The stuff to help spread it is used in equal amounts as the insecticide. That is here.. https://bugspray.com/catalog/insecticide/additive/spread-x-boost-adjuvant
A 32 oz jug of that is $30.
So I have $100+ shipping invested.
Using a strong mix my 30” diameter oak would take 3 buckets of water and 6oz of each ingredient. It comes in a 28oz jar. At that point I can do roughly 5 30” diameter oaks for about $100. At $20 a tree I’m not going to do the whole woods but I would try it on the big oaks right by the house.

I have also heard about a super tiny wasp that raids their egg masses. I haven’t had a chance to research those at all so I just don’t know much about it.

We have our first big event this weekend, the ATV Fire Ride. A couple of hundred ATVs and UTVs are going to gather at the Silver Cliff picnic grounds and go for a ride. There are timed departures so that the don’t just swamp the local trails and businesses with hundreds of people. Afterward there is a big party with drawings and prizes back at the picnic grounds. Cozzy’s Polaris in Marinette donated a brand new ATV to be raffled off. The proceeds go to the Town of Stephenson VFD.

According to their Facebook page there are over 300 people going and over 1,700 people interested. Here is a link. https://www.facebook.com/events/325349410506036

We have some new businesses to be aware of. The frist one up is the new golf course in Lakewood. It is just before the McCaslin golf course on Hwy F. They have a driving range and a greenhouse there. Now they have developed a full on 18 hole pitch & put course. Good luck & best wishes! Here is a link. https://www.facebook.com/photo/?fbid=784772783843112

One of my favorite trail stops has changed hands. The Northwoods Bar on Northway Rd (formerly Hwy A) and Benson Lake Rd. has closed and is in the process of reopening under new ownership. The same thing is going on at the Riverside Bar in Crivitz.

One last new business.. There is now a bulk materials yard at Hwy X & A where you can buy dirt, gravel and other similar materials. They had a big banner but our harsh weather took it down. They are still building it and eventually it will have signs and gates.
Apparently some people had the mistaken idea that some unknown benevolent organization came along and set that up just for them to have these materials free for the taking. No, it is a business and you have to pay for that stuff.

We had some spectacular northern lights over the past week. There are tons of pictures on the Facebook group Crivitz Area Talk. We are in an unusually active time for sunspots, so if you missed out there will likely be other chances to see the show.

Always looking to exit on a high note, here is a picture from Sunday night’s sunset.


Have a good week and thank you for visiting!
RJB

Friday 5-3-2024

Greetings and welcome!

Spring is springing for sure now.

The frogs in the ponds have been getting loud, sometimes surprising you as you drive by. The leaves on the trees are starting to emerge, and it looks like the choke cherries are getting their first flowers. A surefire sign of spring is the gnats. They are here.

This morning when I let the dog out there were SO many birds singing that it was loud. The songbirds have returned. People are seeing their first humming birds and oriels.

I have not seen gypsy moth caterpillars yet. I am not sure if my countermeasures worked that well or if they just haven’t come yet.

The drought cycle of ElNino that left us with a terrible snowmobile season has been broken. We have been getting rain every few days. The ponds and streams have ample water in them and whitewater rafting is great with the Peshtigo running a +16″. That is a very fun level.

The Marinette Co ATV trails have been open for a few weeks. Oconto Co opened 4/28, and most other trails open this weekend.

The only event that I have for the upcoming weekend is that Amberg Fire & Rescue is having a brat fry at Mathis Hardware in Amberg from 10-2 tomorrow ( Sat 5-4-2024).

That’s it for today. Have a good weekend and thank you for visiting!

RJB

Saturday 4-20-2024 Update

Greetings and welcome!

There is a lot going on and I am having trouble keeping up with it all.

First up we have events today. Today is the Saturday of Peshfest at Rapids Resort and Kosir’s Rafting. They have all kinds of whitewater activities, a big meal tonight, followed by music and a mechanical bull. They should have a good weekend of it with the river running at about 800cfs, about a +12″.

Next up today is the tavern minigolf. Here is a poster.

Next up before I forget, there are workers working on Boat Landing 11. That got delayed last year for a lack of materials. I would look forward to that opening sometime this summer.

I put on a lot of miles this week and there were orange signs going up all over. In Silver Cliff It looks like they are going to tar and gravel part of Hwy C from C & F and toward Old J Rd.

Apparently they have the same thing planned for the mountain goat path that they call Hwy F. That stretch got new asphalt a while back but they cheaped out and put about a 1/2″ of asphalt over the rough road and expected it to last 15 years. It didn’t last. No big surprise there. It has been rough for a coupe of years now Now it looks like they are going to cheap out again and patch, tar & gravel part of it.

Hwy C from Tower Rd to C & F and Hwy F really need to be ground up, compacted and re-asphalted. The road is in poor condition but there is no indication that they are planning on fixing it. Welcome to the end of the county where there is always somewhere else more important to repair roads and suspension parts fail in less than a year.

The spring greening is well under way. New this week the maples are dropping the little red flowers that they put out in spring. You will see red stains n the road where the trees dropped the flowers and they got mashed into the road. Soon they will follow with leaves and helicopter seeds.

Everywhere that you look there are trees or plants greening up. Some years my world doesn’t get green until the first weekend in May. We are very early this year.

Until that greens up fire danger will be high. It was somewhat reduced this week with some rain but it will be back. Between last year’s dry vegetation and the relentless spring winds it will again be high or extreme again soon.

Last weekend the ATV trails and road routes opened in Marinette County. There were quite a few riders but it was all pretty casual. Oconto County opens later this month, and Langlade will open soon.

The bears are out of hibernation and they are hungry. At the moment there are no grubs or berries for them to eat so bird feeders are a prime target for them.

The chippies are out and active. I don’t really care if the cute little dirt rats are running around and chirping for mates. When they start getting destructive and trying to undermine foundations and steps then it is game on. I use a Chipmonkinator trap like they have at Tractor Supply. They are spendy but they work fantastic. https://www.tractorsupply.com/tsc/product/catchmor-chipmunkinator

People were asking if it is safe to disconnect well house heaters and plumbing protection. Last week no, this week mostly yes. Exposed pipes might be at risk still but I will be turning off the heaters in my well house as soon as I can get back there.

This is going to be an absolutely brutal year for gypsy moths. Large areas were hit hard last year and now there are billions of eggs waiting to hatch. That should start any day.

The DNR announced some airplane spraying in the area, but so far it is limited to Tommy Thompson State Park. That has people quite annoyed. For people with more than a few trees the aerial spraying of BT is the best option, but so far no one is stepping up to do it. Hopefully that changes.

That’s all that I have at the moment. Have a fun weekend and thank you for visiting!

RJB