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Greg Peck: Where Wisconsin's winter is even worse

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Greg Peck
March 4, 2014

I was off last week and spent a few days at week's end up in Minocqua. Why, you might wonder, with the weather so frigid here, would anyone venture four hours farther north? Well, my parents live there, and my sister and her husband live a few blocks away in Minocqua's twin resort community of Woodruff.

Mom kept checking the temperatures and forecasts in Minocqua and Janesville on her iPhone. In the three-plus days we were up north, it might have been cold here in Rock County, but temperatures averaged 15 to 20 degrees lower up in Oneida County. Before we headed home Sunday afternoon, Mom was reporting the overnight forecast for Minocqua was minus 24—almost unimaginable for March.

Couple that cold air with much more snow than we have here in Rock County and, well, expect a late spring in Wisconsin's north woods.

The only ones who seemed to be happy about the weather were guys earning paychecks by shoveling snow off roofs (saw a whole herd atop a church school) and snowmobilers, who were plentiful. And, of course, bars, restaurants and dealers who cater to snowmobilers. If you stop for a meal at a lakeside restaurant and see a near-empty parking lot, better check the frozen lake to see how many snowmobiles are clustered outside. The place could be mighty busy.

Such was the case at the Four Seasons Supper Club on Big Arbor Vitae Lake. It's one of our favorites, and we wound up there for fish Friday night only after discovering the nearby Plantation Supper Club temporarily closed. We got to the Four Seasons early, so seating wasn't a problem, but by the time we left, snowmobilers were packing the restaurant—known for attracting many hummingbirds along its deck in summer (plenty of seating available out there this month!).

Saturday was March 1, of course, and despite the frigid air, I talked Cheryl into taking Molly for an afternoon walk with me while I photographed the winter scenes. Hope you enjoy the above photo album.

Greg Peck can be reached at 608-755-8278 or gpeck@gazettextra.com. Or follow him on Twitter or Facebook.



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