A Lovely Lake Home Overlooking Little Bear Lake (near Webb Lake and Danbury, WI)

A couple days ago I had the pleasure of photographing this northern Wisconsin lake home in Voyager Villager, which is located near Webb Lake and Danbury.  It overlooks Little Bear Lake, and the sellers seem to have adopted bears as a consistent theme in their decor.  Scroll on down for more bears and more lake-home goodness.

 

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A Splendid Chalet on Trego Lake (Trego, Wisconsin)

The other day I had the pleasure of photographing this splendid chalet on Trego Lake, not far from Trego, Wisconsin.  If you like all those windows facing the lake, and if you’re ready to do more than just window-shop, you can get the particulars on this lake place from my Realtor wife at www.JeanHedrenRealtor.com.   Otherwise, just scroll on down for more lake-home goodness.

 

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Exploring The Source of the Saint Croix River (Solon Springs, WI)

The other day I launched a solo expedition to explore the very headwaters of the Saint Croix River.  It was, I’m afraid, a far more modest endeavor than Orellana exploring the Amazon, Speke exploring the Nile, or even Schoolcraft exploring the Mississippi.  All I did was have an extra pancake and an extra cup of coffee at breakfast, and then drive on up to Solon Springs, where I parked at the north end of Upper Saint Croix Lake.  Then I started hiking.

A confession: Although I did hike in on a January morning when it was below zero, that’s actually because I’m a wimp.  In the summer I’d risk becoming trapped in hip-deep mud while being attacked by bloodthirsty mosquitos.  Plus, with no leaves on the alders, it was much easier to see what was going on out there.

Once I hiked down the trail for a hundred yards or so, the human footprints stopped.  Given the timing of our recent snowfalls, it appeared that no one else had been wandering these headwaters for at least the past few weeks.  Now it was feeling more like a real expedition.  But not quite.

So here’s a brief geography lesson.  (Don’t worry.  Short version.)  Near Solon Springs, Wisconsin, the Saint Croix River begins as a small creek flowing from a wetland area just north of Upper Saint Croix Lake.  From this same wetland, another small stream flows northward toward Lake Superior.  That trickle eventually becomes the Brule River, a world-famous destination for paddlers and anglers.

Imagine a single raindrop that falls precisely in the center of this headwaters area and strikes the edge of a certain alder leaf.  After the raindrop splits in two, its northern half travels down the Brule and through all of the Great Lakes before eventually ending up in the Atlantic.  Its southern half travels down the Saint Croix River and the Mississippi all the way to Gulf of Mexico.  (In theory.  In reality, of course, it’s one big sponge that leaks from both ends.)

I planned my “expedition” carefully.  The North Country Hiking Trail crosses Saint Croix Creek a ways north of Upper Saint Croix Lake.  That’s where I turned and headed upstream.  The snow wasn’t very deep, and at first I made good progress by clawing my way through the spruce and cedars that lined the creek.  But soon the alders became more and more impenetrable.

Eventually I reached a stretch where the Saint Croix River was less than a foot wide.  Although I was still curious to see its very beginning, I knew that further progress would be difficult.  So that’s where I decided to turn around.  Sometimes you just have to respect your alders.

For more photos from my “expedition,” just scroll on down.  For a short video, visit my wife’s YouTube channel at Jean Hedren, Your NW Wisconsin Realtor.

 

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An Artesian Well in Winter (Solon Springs, WI)

I paused at this local Solon Springs landmark the other day when I was out exploring the headwaters of the Saint Croix River.  It’s located at a boat landing near the north end of Upper Saint Croix Lake.  People often stop here to fill their water jugs with delicious springwater that’s just as icy cold and refreshing in July as it is in January.  If you’re hot and thirsty, but nowhere near Solon Springs right now, well, you’ll just have to take my word for it.

For a cool, refreshing video of this artesian well, visit my wife’s YouTube channel at Jean Hedren, Your NW Wisconsin Realtor.

 

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SOLD on Lower Eau Claire Lake

A while back, I had the pleasure of photographing this modest but charming cabin on Lower Eau Claire Lake in Barnes, Wisconsin.  It’s just been sold by my Realtor wife, Jean Hedren.  (You can visit her website at www.jeanhedrenrealtor.com.)

For an affordable price, this cabin’s new owners will enjoy one of the best views on Lower Eau Claire Lake.  If you’re not them, and if you’re not even here in northwest Wisconsin, you can at least enjoy their view vicariously.  For more, just scroll on down.

 

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New and Improved on Gilmore Lake

osprey lake living room, copyright al cambronne

Last week I had a chance to reshoot this lovely home on Gilmore Lake near Minong, Wisconsin.  That doesn’t happen often; it’s a long story, but here’s the short version: back in July, 12″ of rain in one night.  Burst dam upstream, lake momentarily up several feet, house all fixed up and better than ever, and now it’s finally ready for its close-up.  The lower level now has brand new, minty-fresh sheet rock and flooring–plus a new furnace, water heater, and all that other infrastructure-type stuff.  While they were at it, the sellers also did a few renovations upstairs.  The house is now better than it ever was.  For more photos, just scroll on down.

osprey lane rec room, copyright al cambronne

osprey dining room, copyright al cambronne

osprey kitchen, copyright al cambronne

gilmore lake bedroom, copyright al cambronne

gilmore lake exterior, copyright al cambronne

 

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As much as I enjoy winter…

upper eau claire shady shoreline

Winter arrived late this year. But it’s here now.  At this very moment, the scene outside my window looks nothing like this. Our lake was still ice-free less than a week ago; every night through our open window we heard trumpeter swans trumpeting softly as the waves disturbed their sleep.  But right now, just down the bay, ice fishermen are venturing out.  They feel the ice is probably thick enough.  And maybe it is.

I’m not going to show you that.  Instead, here a few scenes from a home I shot last July on northwest Wisconsin’s Upper Eau Claire Lake.  I remember the day. It was humid and in the upper 90s.  To get just the right angles, I was clambering around in the sun on this hillside for a little too long.  Since I was on the job, it wouldn’t have really been appropriate for me to put down my camera and jump in the lake.  But I was tempted.  And that hot tub in the next photo was definitely not on the agenda.

If, like me, you already need a break from your first taste of winter, scroll on down for more…

hot tub overlooking upper eau claire

patio overlooking upper eau claire

shady dock on upper eau claire

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