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Thread: Apostle Islands National Lakeshore

  1. #1
    jrussl's Avatar
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    Apostle Islands National Lakeshore

    Decided to fly up to the Apostle Islands Lakeshore yesterday to see the ice caves that I have been hearing so much about. Last year they became quite the rage with over 138,000 people going to see them. They opened for this season yesterday.

    http://www.duluthnewstribune.com/new...es-opening-day

    We dilly dallied around in the morning and didn't get in the air until almost noon. Luckily we had a tailwind so the 270 SM trip only took a little over 3 hours not including a stop in Phillips WI for fuel.

    This a truly a special trip and one that I will remember for a long long time. The cliffs and ices caves we saw yesterday were truly some of most beautiful natural wonders we have ever seen. I am glad we ended up pulling the trigger to make the trip even that late in the day. With changing ice conditions, variable weather, and an unpredictable personal schedule, we figured that now was that time as it may not come again until next year or worse.

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    As we hit Lake Superior the ice looked suitable for landing.

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    Rounding the tip of the peninsula we got this shot of the Raspberry Island Lighthouse

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    Lots of people on the ice trekking down to the caves. We had a plan to land and tie down just west of the parking area then walk the same one to two mile hike that everyone else was doing. Luckily we got a pirep from a airplane just departing the caves while we were still on our way up. He had parked just offshore of the caves, a bit more than the 1/4 mile park boundary. This was excellent info as it saved us a bunch of time hiking. Not that we couldn't use a hike, but with our late start, we were going to run out of daylight.

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    Iceboat racers call this "Hollywood" ice

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    Screwing in the ice screws with help from Rico

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    I have seen lots of discussion on ice screws on dot org but I can now also say that these things are the cat's ass. It was a nice cold day so they held great.

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    More pictures to come after dinner.............
    Last edited by jrussl; 04-02-2018 at 10:35 AM. Reason: Updated picture links

  2. #2

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    Jeff, These look even better on my computer than the $50 screen in your hangar. SC calendar pics for sure. Jeff

  3. #3
    12Geezer2's Avatar
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    Once again---NICE PHOTOS---Thanks for posting---perfect day

  4. #4
    180Marty's Avatar
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    Very nice and no worry about Black Bugs.

  5. #5

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    Very cool, did they have the old Christmas tree's marking the 1/4 mile boundary from the lakeshore? I may try to get up there this week. Thanks for the pictures!

  6. #6
    jrussl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LandCub View Post
    Very cool, did they have the old Christmas tree's marking the 1/4 mile boundary from the lakeshore? I may try to get up there this week. Thanks for the pictures!
    Yes they did.....I think they were Charlie Brown Christmas trees..........

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    Last edited by jrussl; 04-02-2018 at 10:32 AM.

  7. #7
    jrussl's Avatar
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    All tied down and ready for the short hike to shore. I'll save the story about taxiing on glare ice in fifteen knots of wind for another time.

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    Heading in to the shore.

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    The closer we get, the better the scenery.

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    Even without ice on them, the cliffs are stunning.

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    Absolutely beautiful!

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    Inside one of the shallow caves

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    Beautiful ice crystals

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    ...this looks interesting.....

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    Belly crawling through a passage from one cave to another.


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    The small dot in the middle of the shot is my airplane

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    Looking straight up......

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    I call this one Snotsicle

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    Waterfall



    The moon was looking down on us all day and also for the flight home in the dark

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    Another waterfall

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    Stunning beauty

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    Gotta start thinking about heading back....

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    We live on a lake so Rico is familiar with clear smooth ice and he does not like it. All four paws like to go in independent directions. "I think I'll stay on the rough ice thank you"

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    Hollywood ice!

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    Nearing the end of a spectacular day with Rico staying on the less slippery areas. He is almost 12 years old and probably smarter than me.

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    Packing up for home.....
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    Last edited by jrussl; 04-01-2019 at 12:15 PM.

  8. #8
    FdxLou's Avatar
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    Jeff
    Where did you find that beautiful model with Rico in all the pictures?







    The last 2 are "Calendar Worthy" for certain!

    Lou

  9. #9
    Bill Rusk's Avatar
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    Awesome post, Jeff. Thank you. A fantastic Cub, beautiful wife, and great dog. Dude, you are living the dream!

    Great photos. Thanks again.

    Bill
    Very Blessed.

  10. #10

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    Amazing trip. Thanks for posting the pictures!

  11. #11
    TirolCub's Avatar
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    ... wow, awesome footage thanks for posting

  12. #12
    jrussl's Avatar
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    Thanks for the nice comments guys. It was a memorable day for us and I enjoy sharing it.

    All sorts of people were belly crawling in the caves. Even plumbers.


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    Last edited by jrussl; 04-01-2019 at 11:03 AM. Reason: Updated picture link

  13. #13
    jrussl's Avatar
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    I also like this shot.


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    Last edited by jrussl; 04-01-2019 at 12:16 PM. Reason: Updated hostage photobucket links

  14. #14
    spinner2's Avatar
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    What a fantastic trip Jeff. That is an amazing place that you've brought to us through some excellent images.

    I don't think I have ever seen so much glare ice. Does the lake freeze there every year or is this one an exception?

    That must have been a full back seat for your wife with a big dog and engine cover.
    "Fast is fine, but accuracy is everything." Wyatt Earp

  15. #15
    SJ's Avatar
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    Jeff, what an awesome post! Great shots and what a fun day to have an airplane!

    sj
    "Often Mistaken, but Never in Doubt"
    ------------------------------------------

  16. #16
    Cubus Maximus's Avatar
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    Really nice work Jeff!

  17. #17
    Grand Pooh Bah soyAnarchisto's Avatar
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    Nice, Jeff!

  18. #18
    behindpropellers's Avatar
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    Nice pics!

  19. #19
    Tim's Avatar
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    Nice Jeff, how much ice out there

  20. #20
    jrussl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tim View Post
    Nice Jeff, how much ice out there
    It looked somewhere over 30". Clear black ice, the strongest there is. You lay the tracks, I'll drive the train.

    Interesting link. I had found a better one years ago but cannot find it now.

    http://www2.mvr.usace.army.mil/Water.../ice_load.html

    Just found another good one.

    http://www.almanac.com/content/ice-t...s-safety-chart

  21. #21
    M1's Avatar
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    Wow, very nice post

  22. #22
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    Amazing photos, thank you for posting them.
    Physics always bats last.

  23. #23
    WindOnHisNose's Avatar
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    I know what we will likely be doing this weekend...

    Thanks, Jeff!

    Randy

  24. #24

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    Randy,

    Make certain to call the Apostle Islands Ice Line and check their FB page for updates. The caves will be closing today to hopefully reopen on Thursday due to a storm. If lake conditions don't look good for a landing, land at the Cornucopia Airstrip and walk to the highway. I'm sure you could thumb or beg a ride from there. Cornucopia is listed as private but is owned by the township and using it is no problem.

  25. #25
    180Marty's Avatar
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    Jeff, would you mind if I put a few of your pic's on my Facebook page? Maybe the plane out on the ice and a couple good ones in the caves.

  26. #26

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    Great pictures thanks Jeff! You just gave me a great idea of a winter destination. I've been to the islands in July. Love them.
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  27. #27
    Anne's Avatar
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    What a wonderful day of exploring! Thanks for posting those gorgeous pictures, Jeff!

    Anne.

  28. #28
    jrussl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 180Marty View Post
    Jeff, would you mind if I put a few of your pic's on my Facebook page? Maybe the plane out on the ice and a couple good ones in the caves.
    Feel free Marty. You should be able to grab them of of Photobucket. If not, let me know.

    Jeff

  29. #29
    180Marty's Avatar
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    Thanks Jeff.

  30. #30

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    Very nice! I flew up to see the caves last year, but was in a rental nosedragger, so I didn't dare land out on the ice, instead flying into Ashland, renting a car, and staying up there for a couple days to explore the caves. I was hoping to make it up there this year on skis, but it would've been a long trip and work interfered (even though it has me stuck in Houghton all week, which is less than 100 nm away). If the ice is in good shape, taking a lap out around Devil's Island and Sand Island will capture some spectacular scenery, with feelings of aloneness like nothing else I've ever experienced in Wisconsin.

    Lighthouse at Devil's Island:
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    Alaska?
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    West side of Devil's:
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    Ice cliffs on Sand Island(?):
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    A couple snowmobilers out in the park:
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    The famous sea caves of Squaw Bay:
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    Well-trodden trail to the caves:
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    Went out for some night photography:
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    Is this even allowed on this forum?
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    ed: My apologies for posting such tiny versions of the photos. Full-sized images can be found here:
    https://picasaweb.google.com/106986214856177472023/LakeSuperiorIceCaves2014?noredirect=1
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  31. #31
    12Geezer2's Avatar
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    ethanb: No need to apologize for photos or airplanes. GREAT pics and nice Cessna---have a friend who has been flying an aerobat for many years and the adventures he has had are simply amazing--- he has many nice photos of his 6 or 7 solo trips to the wilds of Canada and Alaska. I really wish I could talk more folks into joining this web site as we all talk flying not just Super Cubs---though I must admit IF my finances allowed --the PA-18 is what I would have.

  32. #32
    tcraft128's Avatar
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    Spectacular shots.

    There is a calendar shot hidden in that Photobucket account....
    Turning money into noise since 1996

    Our Build here


  33. #33
    Cranman
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    Great pictures, Jeff. We spend summers in Bayfield and have seen the caves by boat/dingy numerous times, but never in the winter. My only caution to pilots is that the park service does not take kindly to airplanes. Minimum altitude over the islands is 1000'AGL (1800'MSL). Part of the National Lakeshore is on the mainland so be careful! I am prohibited from landing my seaplane outside the park and taxiing in to a beach to enjoy the beauty of the area.
    A gun is like a parachute. If you need one and don't have one, you'll probably never need one again.

  34. #34
    scout88305's Avatar
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    excellent thanks for the post

    “We sleep safely in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm.”

  35. #35

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    Quote Originally Posted by CRANMAN View Post
    Great pictures, Jeff. We spend summers in Bayfield and have seen the caves by boat/dingy numerous times, but never in the winter. My only caution to pilots is that the park service does not take kindly to airplanes. Minimum altitude over the islands is 1000'AGL (1800'MSL). Part of the National Lakeshore is on the mainland so be careful! I am prohibited from landing my seaplane outside the park and taxiing in to a beach to enjoy the beauty of the area.
    Cranman,
    It sounds like you have quite a bit of local knowledge. I know that Jeff, and another pilot that recently visited the caves, both landed and tied down outside of the 1/4 mile National Lakeshore Boundary clearly marked by the Christmas trees. Neither taxied anywhere near the shore. On the sectional chart, the legend states that 2000' AGL is requested(requested being a key word, not required) in the blue dotted/solid blue boundary lines. Is the 1000' AGL(1800' MSL) you mention published anywhere? Did a park official give you that info? I would just like to know for my own personal knowledge as I am up that way a fair amount.

    Where do you base your plane in the summer? I'll keep an eye out for you.

    Thanks,
    Joe

  36. #36
    Yooper Cub rotto789's Avatar
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    Jeff,

    Great pictures! I've also heard people say that the cliffs off of Grand Island near Munising and Pictured Rocks have some great ice features as well, just a thought for a future day trip. Lookin good in that beautiful Super Cub! Hope to hook up with ya some day and do a little back country flyin, Take Care

    Rick

  37. #37
    Steve Pierce's Avatar
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    Awesome shots Jjeff. Looked like an excellent day to own and fly a Super Cub. Thanks for taking the time to post and share.
    Steve Pierce

    Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects.
    Will Rogers

  38. #38
    jrussl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rotto789 View Post
    Jeff,

    Great pictures! I've also heard people say that the cliffs off of Grand Island near Munising and Pictured Rocks have some great ice features as well, just a thought for a future day trip. Lookin good in that beautiful Super Cub! Hope to hook up with ya some day and do a little back country flyin, Take Care

    Rick
    Thanks for the kind comments Rick. Looking forward to when we can do some trips together after you get your project in the air.

    Jeff
    Last edited by jrussl; 03-05-2015 at 06:24 PM. Reason: bad grammar as usual

  39. #39
    Cranman
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    Joe,

    I was given that info. years ago by knowledgeable local pilots. If other info. is now on the sectional I would follow that.


    My PA14 is based at ASX. If you are up my way and need to tuck in a hangar for the night let me know. (772 349-8550)


    Jon
    A gun is like a parachute. If you need one and don't have one, you'll probably never need one again.

  40. #40
    scout88305's Avatar
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    There are about 10 planes going tomorrow 3/7,, plans are to land around 1230-100 If anyone out there is interested....

    “We sleep safely in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm.”

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