Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Timberwolf Sighting

Friday, September 11th, 2009

Back in early August, our guests in Cottage #7 had an extraordinarily rare encounter on their drive back from town on County Road #7, only a couple miles away from Thunder Lake Lodge.  One person in the car pointed out the gray wolf on the side of the road.  So they got as close as they thought they could get to take a picture.  After taking the first photo, they decided to try get a little closer and get an even better photo.  Amazingly, the wolf did not run as they approached closer.  Apparently, the wolf didn’t really pay much attention to them.  I still have yet to see a wolf myself, although I know there are plenty in the area as our deer hunters in November see them quite frequently.

Thanks for the photos, Dolan family!

“See You At The Lake”

Fun on the Sandbar!

Wednesday, July 22nd, 2009

Thunder Lake has a sandbar that many our guests frequent throughout the summer.  It’s an area in the main basin of the lake where anchored boats and pontoons from all over the lake congregate to socialize, swim, grill out, play games and just flat-out relax and enjoy the sun.  Here are some photos of the fun from a couple weeks ago:

“See You At The Lake”

Water Quality Testing Results

Friday, July 17th, 2009

The Thunder Lake Association membership recently had our testing results for water quality returned from Cass County.  RMB Environmental Laboratories, Inc. conducted the testing.  Instead of trying to summarize the report and ultimately giving the wrong information, I will just post the links for those who are interested.  There is a lot of interesting information in the reports.

In the end, it basically states that Thunder Lake is in the top 5 for water quality in Cass County for lakes over 1,000 acres of surface area.  Clarity and quality are increasing, and phosphorus levels are dropping.  In case you are wondering, this is good news.  The TSI, or Trophic State Index is one of the more important gauges of water quality and Thunder Lake rated very high in that category.

Below is a map of all the testings sites.  At testing site 206, which is directly across from Thunder Lake Lodge, the highest water clarity taken was 30 feet on the Secchi Disk reading!  It was consistently the highest average clarity on the lake.

Also, here is the last survey data taken on Thunder in 2006 by the DNR Fisheries Department.  Thunder gets stocked for walleyes during the fall of odd numbered years.  Another walleye stocking will take place this fall.

“See You At The Lake”

Wood Duck Hatch!

Wednesday, June 10th, 2009

In the spring of 2008, we built and put up a wood duck house on the red pine in front of Cottage #7 & Cottage #8.  However, we didn’t get any nesting takers.  This spring, I went up and put in new bedding in the house with hopes it would attract a female wood duck for nesting.  After a few days, we began to see activity in the house and soon thereafter, there were 9 eggs.

Two days ago, I checked to see if they had hatched again and they hadn’t.  Today, our guests notified us that the chicks had jumped out of the house and walked down to the water.  We ran outside to try get good pictures, but they had already made their way down the shoreline.

According to wikipedia, wood duck chicks jump from the house a day after they hatch and are immediately able to swim and get food on their own.  It’s pretty amazing how well-developed they are following the hatching from the egg.

“See You At The Lake”

The Graczyk’s

Tuesday, June 9th, 2009

Gerry & Bea Graczyk have been coming to Thunder Lake for over 20 years to fish for walleyes.  So it’s safe to say that the couple from Silver Lake, MN have done their homework and alot of research over the years on how to catch Thunder Lake walleyes.  Their time and persistence has paid off.  Over the years, they and their sons have caught some giant walleyes.  In classic fashion, a great fishing story usually follows each big walleye they have caught on Thunder throughout the years.

Last week, the Graczyk’s joined us again in their favorite cabin, Cottage #7.  According to them, last week’s fishing was one of the better weeks of fishing they have seen in a while.  They caught numbers and good sizes of walleyes.  Ask Gerry and/or Bea and both of them will tell you that Bea outfished Gerry yet AGAIN this year.  Don’t be misled by the photos below.  Gerry claims to be able to hold them more properly and get them back in the water faster, but I just think he likes to try and take credit for Bea’s walleyes on camera (just kidding Gerry).

The Graczyk’s shared their photos with us from last week and we thought we would post them.  There are details of each fish in the photos.

Thanks for sharing with us, Gerry & Bea.

“See You At The Lake”

Technological Advancement at TLL

Monday, May 18th, 2009

Thunder Lake Lodge has previously had a wireless network that had been working intermittently and inconsistently.  We inherited a non-PC wireless network and I’m not a Mac or Apple guy, so you probably can contribute operator/administrator error to the old system not working properly last summer.  Hopefully, those days are behind us.

Today, myself and my good friend Jeff from Summerhill Farm installed a new wireless router and access point that is operated by a PC (my forte) in the lodge.  We then took our laptop around the resort to test out the new Wi-Fi network.  You will be happy to know that while sitting in Cottage #12, Condo #6, Cottage Deluxe and A-Frame #1, which are the furthest units away from the lodge in their respective directions as shown on our resort map, we had fast wireless network access from all points.

I know a few of our guests from last year were rightfully frustrated that they couldn’t get wireless signal from their respective cottages and instead had to walk to the lodge to get Internet access.  Pending any bad weather, this should no longer be a problem.

TLL is officially a “Wi-Fi” resort.

“See You At The Lake”

Docks are in, bring on the fishing opener!

Friday, May 8th, 2009

Thunder Lake Lodge’s docks were put in this week and the resort in general is starting to get that “summertime” feel to it.  The fishing boats and ramps are in the water, and the newly upholstered seats of our pontoons are ready to be installed and put in the water shortly as well.  Our brand new chaise lounges have found the beach, and the grass has really greened up in the last week or so.

Our fishing opener guests will be arriving this afternoon.  We will let you know how they do throughout the weekend and will provide photos hopefully of their fresh catches. More to come on that soon.

Good luck to all fisherman this weekend and most importantly, stay safe.

“See You At The Lake”

The Otter Files – Part I

Sunday, April 19th, 2009

On April 21st of last year, we had our first otter encounter at Thunder Lake Lodge which we took pictures of.  In timely fashion an otter has appeared again this spring, this time on April 19th.  After finishing a fish dinner in front of the lodge on the ice, I had the opportunity to sneak up on him and get some good photos and even a 5 minute video clip.

At approximately the 4:05 mark of the video clip, you will notice the otter gets startled and takes off……only it’s not because of me.  A few deer were running onto the property directly towards me.  Apparently, I wasn’t detected until they were only 10-15 feet away from me.  They then hit the brakes, doubled back and took off.  Simply unbelievable.  If you want to hear me giggle and narrate like a little school boy, then I suggest you watch the clip.  This stuff never gets old.

We actually have about 4 other different video clips that are a little shorter in length.  Some of them actually show the otter eating fish. On another one, he notices me and starts grunting.  I will try post those in other installments of “The Otter Files” along the way.

According to wikipedia, otters eat 2-3 pounds of fish per day.  After watching this otter for a while, I tend to think that number is higher.  It seemed as though he came up with another fish on 4 out of 5 tries.  Extremely efficient hunters in water.  Apparently fishing for otters is good this time of year in front of Thunder Lake Lodge where the docks usually are. The rarity of sightings like this are what make it so fun to watch for us.

“See You At The Lake”

Bald Eagles

Sunday, April 19th, 2009

Our apologies for the recent blogging hiatus.  It’s been over a month since our last blog post.  The combination of not much to report and us being busy during the spring weather has kept us away from the computer lately (more so the latter).

In March, we looked out our window to find 22 bald eagles congregating in the swimming area on the ice!  It looked like they were feeding on some fish remains that were left behind by a winter fisherman.

I don’t know about you, but we have personally never seen that many bald eagles at one time.  We thought it was amazing.  Although the most we counted at one time was 22, we only caught 12 on picture at once.  We thought we would post some photos.  We also included a zoomed in photo.  There are a mixture of adults and juveniles in the photos.  The juveniles obviously do not have their white heads yet.  Enjoy.

“See You At The Lake”

1st Season(s) In The Books

Tuesday, March 3rd, 2009

In less than memorable fashion recently, TLL’s ice fishing house was taken off the ice for the winter.  This is because Minnesota requires all permanent ice houses south of Hwy 200 to be off the ice by the end of February.  It was a sad day to say the least.  I didn’t get out in the ice house nearly as much as I would have liked to this winter.  Just too much work to be done.  Ice fishing in portable houses is still allowed however.  Walleye season is over, but panfish can still be on the menu.  The March crappie bite when the weather gets warmer can be very productive in many area lakes.

We arrived to TLL on March 1st, 2008, the very first day we were allowed to be here last year.  At this time last year, I was sleeping every evening on the couch until we got all of our stuff moved over.  Our first full calendar year is in the books.  Time has absolutely flown by for us.

“See You At The Lake”