Awaiting us upon our return to the Copper Country from our vacation in Florida was a good covering of snow, the results of a blizzard that passed through a couple of weeks ago. Reported was a snowfall of 45-54 inches at Delaware, a defunct copper mining mining location 10 miles west of Copper Harbor and 67 inches in Painsdale, a small village about 12 miles south of Houghton. It is melting fast, however, and if we could get a good spring rain it would all but disappear.
Our friend Jim Junttila from Laurium, an outdoor writer for the Daily Mining Gazette and other publications was out on a photographic prowl on April 11 and captured the Isle Royale Queen IV frozen in a swirl of ice. With the Houghton-Hancock lift bridge in the backgfround, it makes for an interesting picture which we will add to our extensive collection. Jim can be contacted at email@example.com.
The Queen lies at her winter wharf on what is called the Portage Canal (technically it is Portage Lake), a waterway the final mile of which was dredged long ago to create a passageway completely across the Keweenaw Peninsula. With minimal ice movement, the boat is quite safe and weathers the winters well. Every five years we have her put into drydock for a hull inspection and cleaning. Presently, our captains are getting her ready to sail to Isle Royale National Park on May 14, the opening voyage for the 2007 season.
A great number and variety of Isle Royale and Queen pictures and be seen at Captain Ben's blog: www.isleroyale.blogspot.com.