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Tag Archives: Washburn Wisconsin

After the race I asked one of the officials where the brownstone caves were located. He pointed out how to reach them. We joined up with a friend from Bayfield and started walking out on the ice toward the caves. We encountered this small island before we had gone very far.


There were some large pressure ridges on the lake and open water where they had been formed. We had to do some back tracking to find places to cross them.



As the temperatures warmed we noticed more water on the ice. We also encountered some large cracks in the ice and decided this probably was not the best day to be making this trip. We decided to add the brownstone caves to our list of things to do on a cold winter day.



A few weeks ago we were in Washburn, Wisconsin for the Start of the Bike Across the Bay fat tire bicycle race. We arrived as the racers were starting to gather. and check out conditions. The evening before the Book Across the Bay had been held. Given that the temperatures were close to 60 degrees Chequamegon Bay was slush and water for that event. For the bike race the water had frozen and it was glare ice.

More photos from the Bike Across the Bay can be found on my website.

We arrived as the racers were starting to gather.

bike-across-the-bay-washburn-wisconsin-17-2-2346I noticed that most of the racers were out checking out conditions and trying to see how much air they would need in their tires. The fat tire bikes has studs which helps with the traction.


While the racers were getting their instructions the photographers were working of getting the ideal shot.



Off they went. Several of them turned back before they had gone very far. I couldn’t tell if the conditions were bad or if they had mechanical problems. As the morning wore on the freshly frozen ice begin to disintegrate. We didn’t stay around for the finish but from comments I heard they bikers were making good time.





We drove over to Washburn, Wisconsin to catch the start of the Bike Across the Bay race. Since we were a bit early we decided to walk down to the harbor and check it out. This was the first time we had visited the Washburn Harbor.




When my wife and I were at the Paddle Across the Bay race in Washburn, Wisconsin earlier this summer she had a chance to cat sit with Bugs. When I first saw her and Bugs I though she had adapted a cat. Fortunately she was just watching Bugs while his owner was participating in the race. Little did we know that Bugs was quite famous. A friend of ours from the Bayfield area sent us an article that appeared in the Bayfield County Journal. Turns out Bugs has her own Facebook page.


One of the items on my bucket list has been to watch the Board Across the Bay paddle board race in Washburn, Wisconsin. We almost didn’t make the trip again this year. A week earlier the Ashland area had a bad storm with 10 inches of rain that washed out some of the key roads. A few days later a bad storm came through Duluth and caused widespread damage. It also went through the Ashland area and folks were still without power in both locations by the weekend. In addition, the weather report for Saturday indicated violent storms by noon with heavy rain and flash flooding. We didn’t want to get caught in a storm. We woke up at 5:30am and checked the weather. It look like it wouldn’t hit before we could make it back to Duluth so we took off for Washburn.

We were a little late in getting started. The mandatory meeting of paddlers was just ending as we pulled into West End Park. I quickly made my way down to the beach to get photos of the participants as they prepared for the start of the races. There were two races taking place. The 14 mile race which went across Chequamegon Bay from Washburn to Ashland and back and a 3 mile race that went up the coast and back.



We watched the participants take off then we jumped in our car and drove over to Ashland where we were going to watch the start of the 7 mile race from Ashland to Washburn.


When we arrived at Bayview Beach in Ashland a group of paddlers were carrying a large birch bark canoe down to the water.


Some of the paddlers were already in the water and starting to loosen up. A second birch bark canoe was put in the lake. The canoers agreed to let the paddle boarders go first so as not to interfere with the start of their race.



The racers lined up and they were off for Washburn. A short time later the canoes started out.



I could see some of the participants from the 14 mile race heading toward the beach so we hung around until the first group of them made the turn at the halfway mark. The first one to make the turn was a woman. Three more racers were in hot pursuit.



After watching the first half dozen racers reach the halfway point we jumped back in the car and headed back to Washburn to watch the participants in the 7 and 14 mile race finish.

While I was waiting I walked out onto the docks and started talking to a woman who worked with the Big Top Big Top Chautauqua. She was keeping her dog entertained while her husband participated in the race. She had just gotten her electricity back after the mid week storm. A house 3 doors down still didn’t have power. Fortunately the winds that had taken down trees in the area went right over the top of the Big Top Chautauqua tent and didn’t do any damage.


It wasn’t long before the first racers started crossing the finish line. They were participating in the 7 mile race. One of the canoes was racing a paddle border to the finish line. He turned around and paddled across the finish line backwards.




While I was watching the race I turned around and notice a group participating in a paddle board yoga class.


A group of geese were swimming along in the middle of the racers. All of a sudden they took flight.


My wife was meeting a friend at the finish line and we were going to grab lunch before returning to Duluth. When I came off of the docks I noticed she had a cat on a leash. My worst fear was that someone convinced her to take a cat. They did but she was just cat sitting Bugsy. His owner was out on the course racing. Apparently he takes Bugsy everywhere. Normally Bugsy rides with him on the paddle board but not during races. When his owner turned up Bugsy did not appear to be a happy cat because he had been left behind. Photos of Bugsy and his owner finishing the race.



It was a great day for watching the paddle board race. It got even better when the bad storm that was predicted never materialized and we made it back to Duluth without any problems.


More photos from Board Across the Bay can be found on my website.

In late June we like to drive up to Bayfield county to view the Wild Lupine. This is not like the Lupine we have around home. Ours is at the most 18″ tall. The Lupine found in Bayfield County is around 4 feet tall. It is found on most the roads in the area but there is a large field of it on the outskirts of Washburn on the road to Bayfield. This year it was particularly prolific, probably because of the wet spring and summer.