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Superior National Forest Update - June 14

Superior National Forest Update
Superior National Forest Update

Superior National Forest Update – June 13, 2019
Hi, my name is Lillie Oravetz, and I’m a seasonal naturalist working this summer with the Superior National Forest, and this is the National Forest Update – information on all sorts of things for people visiting the Forest.
The reason I’m here this week is that this is the start of our summer Resort Naturalist Programs.  The Superior has been providing naturalist programs with the cooperation of area resorts and businesses since the 1980s.  Currently, the program is cooperatively funded by the Forest Service and Visit Cook County.  The programs themselves are given at several of the resorts along the shore as well as at Hedstrom’s Lumber Mill, Sawbill Campground, and the Grand Marais Municipal Campground.  Although programs are given at specific host resorts, they are open to everyone:  people staying at the resort, people staying elsewhere, local residents – all are welcome.  There’s a wide variety of topics from bogs to stars to bears and everything in between.
Campfire programs start at 7:30 and generally last from one to two hours, and morning programs usually start at either 10 or 10:30.  A complete schedule can be found on our website, on the Visit Cook County website, at Forest Service offices and the Grand Marais Visitor Information Center, or at any of the participating resorts.  These are all fun programs with something for people both young and old, so we hope to see you at a campfire or on a hike soon!

As our roads continue to firm up, travel has gotten easier.  Our road system is in good shape right now, although on some of the more heavily traveled roads there can be some areas of washboarding.  You can expect to encounter logging trucks on the Tofte District along the Trappers Lake Road, the Perent Lake Road, The Grade, Cook County 27, and Cook County 8.  On the Gunflint District, trucks will be using the Lima Grade, the South Brule Road, the Greenwood Road, the Firebox Road, Blueberry Road, Cascade River Road, Pike Lake Road, and Cook County 7.
Our spring prescription burning has been completed.  There are still two summer burns planned for later in July - as always, weather depending.  People need to continue to be diligent with campfires, particularly in the Seagull area which has not received as much rain recently as other areas.  Make sure always that any fire is dead out and cool to the touch before you leave the area.
If you have a hummingbird feeder, you may notice that in the next few weeks, fewer birds will be visiting.  While hummers need to tank up on sugary nectar for the energy needed to migrate, they need more protein to successfully lay eggs and raise chicks.  That means that right now, the birds are concentrating more on eating insects than on visiting your feeder.  You’ll still have hummers, but they won’t be visiting as often as earlier in the spring.  With fewer birds and warmer temperatures, it is easy for the sugar water in feeders to go bad.  Change the sugar water at least once a week, and whenever you see cloudiness in the water.  Feed a three to one mix of water to sugar, and don’t add any color to the mix.
Be sure to look for a naturalist program schedule!  This weekend includes programs at the campfire ring at Cascade Lodge and Chateau LeVeaux on Friday and at Sawbill Lake Campground and Bluefin Bay on Saturday.  We hope to see you there!  Until next week, this has been Lillie Oravetz with the National Forest Update.