Wildlife sightings

Cory Christianson

It seems to rain about every other day on the Gunflint Trail this spring, creating high water situations on many lakes and streams. Saganaga Lake is slightly higher than normal and the rivers that feed it are running hard.

The adventurous anglers who have been braving the rapids into North Lake from Little North are fighting high, fast-moving water that makes dragging a boat up the rapids very difficult. The Seagull River feeding Saganaga Lake is also keeping a fast pace, and just high enough to hide the deep channel that boats must follow. One false move and you risk dinging a prop or worse, wedging the boat between rocks.

The rain has also encouraged numerous bug hatches that love to swarm and bite in the balmy weather between storms. The black flies have taken a seat to the pesky mosquitoes lately, while the ants and spiders have been erupting from my neglected firewood pile that should have been cut and split already.

These same bugs find their way into lakes and streams during high water seasons providing a ready-made meal that takes little effort to find and capture. This can make the bite a little tough at times especially once the hatches begin erupting from below the surface. Oh well, if fishing was easy I would not have a job.

There have been a number of wildlife sightings this week as the forest becomes thicker by the day. Jon Schei, Gunflint Lodge fishing guide, spotted a sow bear with four cubs following her across the road one morning while driving to the lodge. The Loon Lake area seems to always have a few black bears loitering for the summer, and they target garbage from cabins and resorts until the berries begin growing.

A giant bull moose has been seen near Iron Lake, I have been told by a couple of people, and a cow and calf pair are usually near the Sag Lake Trail in the morning and evening. They would normally be feeding in the moose pond located on County Road 81, but I think the high water is keeping them from wading the deep swamp. Summer is blooming and the bugs are a nuisance, but hardly a reason to stay out of the woods.

Cory Christianson has worked as a fishing guide on the Gunflint Trail since 2000. If you have any fishing or wildlife reports or stories to share, send an email to: christiansoncory@hotmail.com or call 218- 388-0315. You can also visit Cory’s website at Gunflintfishingguide.com.

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2016-06-18 digital edition

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