Wildersmith June 25

Eastern_Grey_Squirrel.jpg
Eastern_Grey_Squirrel.jpg

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What a week for the northland. The Solstice sends us off into summer…and we celebrate the full strawberry moon.
 
The Gunflint weather has been mostly nice…not too hot…with a couple rain attempts that made for some lasting puddles and increased creek trickles. The first real thunderstorm of the season skulked about the upper Trail last Thursday (June 17t). Some zips of lightning zapped through the hillsides to the north and west and several thunder boomers echoed across area lakes.
 
At this point, I have heard of no strikes being reported, but as we all know it might be several days before a strike could evolve into flames. Let’s hope that all those charges from heaven grounded away from vulnerable fuels. And thank goodness we were spared the damaging winds that blasted other parts of the state.
 
Days around the solstice can be just delightful, especially at sunrise and sunset. Recent clear skies as the sun ascends from and descends over the Canadian horizon are capturing the visual senses per usual. There aren’t enough descriptors to fully articulate this northern wonder…you just have to be here.
 
And if there isn’t enough color in those arrivals and departures of Sol, how about the golden blooms that line the byway? The yellow blossoms brighten the near 60-mile trek from beginning to end like billions of earthbound starlets waving in the breeze. What a sparkling time of year. Remember to take a little time and enjoy the view.
 
Thousands of squirrels continue to pester many Trail residents. Some folks down the road report that during their winter absence, one of the rodent families opened a new entrance into their cabin.
 
This is not a new occurrence, as it probably happens more frequently than we would like to admit. In fact, their story harkens back to my experience with squirrels in the HVAC system of my truck a few years back. However, it’s a first for these Gunflint Lake residents who usually have experiences with mice.
 
The dilemma is how to rid this clan from crawling between the walls of the home. A discussion around the table with friends the other night offered minimal solutions besides calling in a professional exterminator. Yet a couple ideas seemed worth exploring after smoke and dynamite were ruled out.
 
One suggestion was to put some of those fabric softening sheets down through the hole in the side of the cabin. The fragrant smell did not set well with the little varmints and five of the half dozen sheets were promptly carried right back out by the unhappy visitors.
 
Since that effort was unsuccessful, the idea of using mothballs came to the front. The thought of fumigating the unwelcomed with that familiar closet scent of yesteryear would seem to hold more promise. I am told that the hole is filled with moth balls and screening has been placed over the entry hole.
Airdate: June 25, 2010

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