Hunter’s Heaven

The trees are changing color quickly as Mother Nature dips her paintbrush in brilliant red, orange, and gold. The days are shorter, and colder. It’s an exciting time of year – a last hurrah before we settle down for winter. While many people flock to Cook County to check out the spectacular color show, others are traveling the woods in search of something else – ruffed grouse.

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Photo courtesy Flickr user Seabamirum

Cook County has a rich hunting heritage with thousands of acres open to the public, but with more hunters in the woods the competition can be frustrating. Imagine owning your own acreage to traverse at your leisure without worry of seeing another flash of orange in the forest. Red Pine Realty has some fantastic, affordable options available for grouse, deer, and bear hunters alike!

The Hovland area is home to some of the best hunting land in the county, and neighbors are generally few and far between.

MLS#6004623 and #6004624 are two beautiful parcels situated near the end of the Arrowhead Trail, together totaling 150 acres. Rugged topography with high ridges and incredible views make this a truly special area, and it’s accessible year round. You can name your own mountain top! Not only that, McFarland Lake is only half a mile up the road.

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MLS #6004624

MLS #6003353 is 30 acres around a mountain top with a 180 degree view of distant Lake Superior. This parcel is perfect for deer hunters and wildlife watchers. Trails allow you to walk the entire perimeter. The owner has planted food plots around the property and set up a nice wildlife viewing blind with incredible views.

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MLS #6003353

Looking for a reasonably priced 40 acre hunting paradise? Check out MLS #6003593 – remote wilderness and prime hunting territory abutted by thousands of acres of Federal land. MLS #6003811 and MLS #6004659 are also worth a look – both have electricity and broadband access coming in within the next couple years.

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MLS #6003593

If you’d like a little more room to stretch your legs (or build some incredible ATV trails), take a look at MLS #6004255 and #6004713, both of which are bordered by public land. MLS #6004073 features a huge pond in the center of the acreage and it’s conveniently located right next door to Tom Lake.

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MLS #6004073

You’ll definitely want to take a look at MLS #6004738. The driveway is in place as well as a full base camp set up and ready for you to plan your adventures, including a nice camper trailer and shed. Many trails have been cut through the property’s 43 acres which is bordered by State land, and power is a future possibility. Game cams have photographed moose, bear, and deer.

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MLS #6004738
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MLS #6004738
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MLS #6004738
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MLS #6004738

MLS #6003658 features 18 acres full of wildlife, but the biggest draw is the fact that all of the sub-structure for your dream cabin is in place and ready for your ideas, including an insulated and heated slab for a house, an insulated garage slab, electricity, driveway, well, septic system, landscaping and boulders, and 15 cords of aspen. It’s on the grid, yet secluded and private.

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MLS #6003658

If you’d prefer a cabin and land all ready to go, MLS #6003580 is your perfect escape. Close to Magney State Park and Lake Superior, this 40 acre property has a small creek with beaver ponds and a well built cabin with a solar electric system, wood stove, full kitchen/bedroom/living area, and a large deck. Another 20 acres is available – MLS #6003581.

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MLS #6003580

If you like to hunt and fish, imagine being able to do both on your own property! MLS #6004009 features almost 100 acres on the “front range” of the Farquhar Hills and includes a large creek with excellent trout habitat. Trails run through the property and there are many great building sites.

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MLS #6004009

MLS #6004730 is a smaller 13 acre parcel, but the big draw is 300 feet of frontage on the Flute Reed River – a fantastic trout stream.

Looking for the ultimate affordable north woods escape? Don’t miss MLS #6002119, #6002120, and #6002121! These three 40 acre parcels have frontage on Mons Creek and include deeded access to Lost Lake, a private wilderness lake stocked with brook trout by the homeowner’s association. Access is gated for security and privacy.

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MLS #6002119
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MLS #6002120
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MLS #6002121

On the other end of the county in Schroeder we have a listing featuring 80 acres of prime hunting land. MLS #6003804 has a variety of trees and low vegetation, as well as a stream and beaver dam with a large pond. Easy access via Zeke’s Trail divides the two 40 acre parcels.

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MLS #6003804

If you like the idea of hunting on your own property but don’t want to be too far from civilization, MLS #6004687 and #6004688 are worth checking out. These two 20 acre woodland parcels are full of wildlife and located in the woods between Grand Marais and Lutsen.

Finally, for the hunter or family looking to call Grand Marais “home,” MLS #6004264 is the perfect homestead site. Beautiful views of Lake Superior and Pincushion Mountain, expansive open meadows (great for deer hunting), a flowing creek, and mature timber forest give you many options.

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MLS #6004264

Happy hunting!

Peak Color Week

It comes with much anticipation. It leaves (pardon the pun) with much sadness. Its peak color week (or two if we’re lucky) on the maple ridges along Lake Superior’s North Shore. Now’s the time to enjoy the spectacle and brace for the slow onset of a much starker woodland without the canopy of foliage. Still, the late fall yellows of the tamarac set against the evergreen forests lying further inland will last well into late October. Come an enjoy what most of us feel is the best time of year along the North Shore.Mac_fallcolors1

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Something is bruin at Red Pine!

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Is it still a bear market for real estate in Cook County? Maybe this little guy thinks so. This cute black bear cub found his way on shore at the Red Pine beach, then promptly ran up into one of our large spruce trees. Where did he come from and how far did he swim in that cold Lake Superior water?? Apparently someone saw him up the shore at the Best Western, where he was “chased” by kids into the lake. Well, he spent a long day in the trees here outside our office. From his perch in the first spruce tree, he came down and promptly went back into another tall spruce on the other side of the building. Crowds gathered as word got around town, but the little black speck way up the tree was difficult to see. Finally, at about 7:00 PM, he got tired and climbed down hoping to escape and find his family. But, alas, too many people and his celebrity caught up to him, so he was trapped, exhausted and scared. With calm and enticing tones, Sherrif’s Deputy Julie tried for a very long time to coax the little fella close enough to grab him, so he could be taken to safety. But after about 40 minutes he took off running around the building looking for safe escape. Eventually, with no where else to hide, he took to the lake and started swimming out to sea. Eventually he found his way to the tip of Artists Point where hopefully he got a good night’s rest. We’re all awaiting word of his next sighting and hope he finds his mamma!

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Wildflowers at Gunflint Lake

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Don’t mow the “weeds” just yet, they may be wildflowers. It’s been kind of a slow spring and early summer, but the grass and weeds are finally getting tall. The lilacs are in full bloom here, even though “down state” they bloomed weeks ago. The road ditches are becoming colorful with daisies and hawkweed coming to life. Lupins are always beautiful this time of year along the shore. Up on the Trail and in the woods are many small beautiful flowers just now showing off their colors. The bunchberry are beautiful with their stark white flower, along with the small starflower, forgetmenots, and the bird-on-the-wing are really gorgeous purple, if you can find them. I found these along the shore of Gunflint Lake.

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Ice Out, Dusty Roads, Busy Times

For area Realtors, this time of year is extremely busy. Hope and optimism fill our hearts as we travel the back roads looking at potential new listings and checking on the condition of signs, driveways and looking for winter damage to trees or structures on current listings. This will be the year that we sell that long-listed cabin, or that newly listed property. Surely, the buyers will be excited by new prices and new inventory. So far, so good. The season has brought some new interest and early sales.

For the first time in a number of years the ice is out on the area lakes. We actually had a fishing opener! Running up the Gunflint Trail to list some new properties two weeks ago, it was still winter with frozen lakes and a blanket of new snow. Last week, I had to run back up the Trail to take pictures all over again as the snow was gone and the ice was out. Roads were dusty and the car showed it. This week it’s much needed rain and buds on the trees. Good things are sure to come. There’s a new and uplifting feeling in the air. Or is it pollen and black flies, already….
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Endangered Species

Take a close look at the photos attached to this post. There are 3 wolves running up the Arrowhead Trail. They were just “downtown” Hovland harassing some local dogs, when I and the dog’s owner came along on our way home. I caught up to the “pack” that was intent on staying on the road and running full out. The leader is just to the right of the power pole in the first photo. The other two took to the ditch shortly thereafter. The one bringing up the rear looked a bit rough. He may have been in a fight or showing signs of mange.

You’re thinking, wow, what a rare wilderness sighting of such wild creatures. Well, these are the 7th, 8th and 9th wolves that I’ve seen along the highways and byways this winter…so far. I’ve also seen tracks regularly on my own driveway.

Over the past 30 plus years of traveling these same roads, I can remember seeing only a handful of wolves, total. The local deer population is at an all time low, which might have something to do with the number of wolves. I wonder just how “endangered” the timber wolf really is? Certainly, Mother Nature is sorting it all out. But, in the mean time I’d keep a close eye on your family pet.

Mike

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Moods of Lake Superior

Moods of Lake Superior are most dramatic in the winter months. Sunrises and sunsets are especially powerful because of the sun’s lower angle which brings it up over the lake, and down behind the Sawtooth Mountains. Clear cold days generate steam fog rising from the lake. On cloudy days with steel-gray sky and lake we often get a short brilliant sunrise or sunset with the sun illuminating the cloud deck from below as it peeks above a clear horizon. Later, we’ll get large sheets of white snow-covered ice floating over large expanses of the lake, which make it appear totally frozen over. A wind shift will push the ice sheet away and expose the open water once again. It’s almost a daily flip flop at times. With storms and waves come ice covered rocks and shoreline from the spray. And, usually later in the winter that ice sheet pushes on shore giving us aqua marine blue piles of ice in large formations along the wind swept shore. It’s a magical canvas of ever changing light and color. Wish you were here…

Mike
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Holidays and Homes on the North Shore

This time of year, our little harbor town looks quite festive. Our street department crew decorates all light poles in downtown Grand Marais in addition to the businesses sporting their holiday decor. Sales abound with a theme of “shop local.” Grand Marais homeowners decorate their yards and homes with lights and blow-up santas. The public utilities commission runs a contest every year for the “best decorations”, awarded to one special ambitious homeowner. In previous years, I too, would put up a christmas tree and lights. The last year I attempted such feats, I had spent weeks (and possibly months) collecting pink and purple ornaments and lights. Some were even vintage-courtesy of our wonderful local thrift store. I spent a decent amount of time putting up my tree, carefully placing the adornments on the branches. Once finished, I stood back and admired my vintagey pink and purple creation. Worthy of Martha Stewart if I might say so myself. Upon returning home a few days later, I opened the door which was adjacent to my christmas tree. To my dismay, the beautiful tree now had three new ornaments-my cats. Martha Stewart no more.
Flash forward a few years to the first christmas in our new home. Being in rural cook county, there is no need for lights and santas. Our north woods sport their own naturally festive holiday look, including my new property. As I lit a fire in the fireplace that christmas eve, I reflected on how lucky I felt to be enjoying my own brick and mortar home. All the blessings and trials that had brought me to that place.
When you are ready to take the plunge, and make the transition from renting to owning, or are ready to call Cook County home, come on in to Red Pine. Many of us live “over the river and through the woods.” We all have experience in buying and/or building our homes and getaways locally. Whether off grid, or just around the corner, our Agents are a wealth of resources and expertise to make your home-owning dreams a reality. Thinking of listing your property? We will put these same skills to work to acquire you a buyer, all with that friendly, small town manner Cook County residents are known for. Stop by, our coffee pot is always on.

Jinsey

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A Commute You Can Live With

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Everyone really loves the fact that moose populate the Arrowhead region. Many a tourist has spent countless hours on the infamous Gunflint Trail in the hopes that they might see one of these iconic creatures. Our Red Pine agent Gail Englund lives off the grid on the Gunflint Trail. I have heard countless stories of the exciting wildlife she gets to see on her commute to and from Grand Marais. Yesterday on her way home as she neared a small lake, a large and proud bull moose stood in her way. Gail, being well versed in wildlife watching, slowed to a stop and turned off her engine. As she was digging for her camera, two cows sauntered out from the woods. One cow nuzzled the bull, the other pawed the ground. Were they competing for his attention? As Gail opened the car door to get a better shot with her camera, both cows took off in opposite directions. The bull wandered off as well. Gail continued her drive home, and upon arriving started her evening chore of loading and stacking wood. Realizing later on that the wheelbarrow was still sitting at the bottom of the stairs, she made her way outside to bring it back to the woodpile. Glancing up, she noticed a large dark figure near her salt lick. A bull moose. The same big bull moose she had encountered earlier. As she snuck to her car to grab the camera in hopes of finally getting a shot of the large animal, he took off. Luckily for Gail, she just might get a few more chances to get that picture.

Jinsey

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