Not having been to a “living wake” before, we didn’t know what to expect and were a little apprehensive. They’re probably all different but we need not have worried about this one. It turned out to be the absolutely right thing to do. Sad as the situation is, it’s still so much better to be able to say how much you appreciated a 40 year friendship when that friend is still around and able to hear it. 😢🙂

The weather held off while we went out West. The day after we got back, it started its nose dive into winter. First rain, then a dash of sleet, and now snow. Oodles of snow. ❄ In a few days we’re being promised some sub-zero, arctic air. Polar vortex? Arctic blast? Hypothermia highway? Oh, rapturous joy! 🥺 Oh, frozen extremities! 🥶 Oh, Minnesota! 😏

But, as they say, hibernation is not an option. So we climbed into our winter gear and walked through the continuously falling snow past Lone Lake to Bryant Lake and back. The air temperature was slightly above freezing so, in addition to feathery light snowflakes, we were also pelted with hefty clumps of wet snow falling from the trees. There were also a few crashes in the forest as dead branches gave way under accumulations of this heavy, wet snow. 😲

Down to Lone Lake
The pier at Lone Lake
On toward Bryant Lake
Branches & snow
To the last drop
On over the ridge
Wall
Overhead
Branch & snow
R2D2’s cousin works in sanitation
Snow falls on the South Fork of Ninemile Creek, Minnesota
Snow falls on the South Fork of Ninemile Creek
Leaf & snow
Toward Highway 62
Weeping willows in winter
Almost to Bryant Lake

We got to Bryant Lake to find that some trusting soul had already set up their fish house (tent) out in the lake. We were having trouble believing the ice is thick enough yet for that but we’re still new here and don’t know much about ice. So maybe the fish are worth the risk? 🐟 Worst case, the lake is not too deep out there. 😲

Bryant Lake, Minnesota with fish house
Bryant Lake with fish house
Maybe the ice is (hopefully) thicker than it looks?
Back to picnics in just a few short, but cold, months
Back under Highway 62
And through the tunnel under Rowland Road
Snowflakes on the tongue
Leaf with droplets
A bird box at Lone Lake
And on toward home…

The usual 5.6 miles (9.0 km) on a mix of soft and boot-packed snow. Not too deep yet. And no ice, yet. Lots of action at the dog park. A good walk followed by a hot lunch at home. 😁

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