A Weekend in the Northwoods

Bayfield Ice Road Photos

Jen and I headed up to Bayfield this weekend for an enjoyable, off-season Northwoods weekend.

The moment we merged onto Highway 2 in Wisconsin, our mobile phones declared ‘No Network’. It took a moment for ‘No Network’ to sink in:

  1. No using the phone’s bluetooth as a dial-up modem.
  2. No calling people you’re meeting to say, “we’re running late”.
  3. No calling for help from the side of the road when Something Bad Happens. (i.e. the car starts making odd sounds in the middle of the Chequamegon National Forest)

Though, we missed ‘Book across the Bay’, the cross-country ski race across the frozen Chequamegon Bay between Ashland and Washburn, we still took advantage of the winter-only real estate.

During the winter months, the State of Wisconsin plows a two-lane, pine tree-lined, road on frozen Lake Superior connecting Bayfield to Madeline Island.

After some difficulty with a small patch of ice outside the B&B, the Neon performed excellently on the Ice Road and had enough zip left for a full tour of the yet-to-be-fully-plowed island.

As isolated as I felt without T-Mobile service, I found the lack of TV and phone in the room refreshing. It made watching Anchorman off the PowerBook‘s DVD player that much more enjoyable.

We’d like to thank Sharon & Craig Locey, proprietors of the Thimbleberry Inn for a quiet, comfortable stay. Sharon’s enthusiastic hospitality, her apple bars, and her restaurant recommendations – all flawless.

She sent us to the Deep Water Grille, next to the South Shore Brewery in Ashland and Maggies in Bayfield. Both are islands of culinary joy in the Northwoods. At Deep Water, Jen enjoyed the black bean veggie burger and I’d go back for half a mushroom, spinach, and gorgonzola sandwich. If they’re out of whitefish livers at the pink flamingo-covered Maggie’s, get the spicy Thai peanut noodles.

After we got out of the lake-effect snow storm, the drive back went very quickly.