Life [WAS] a Beach - Memories of Lakeside Living

  

Category:  Fields and Streams

By:  buzz-of-the-orient  •  4 years ago  •  28 comments

Life [WAS] a Beach - Memories of Lakeside Living

Life [WAS] a Beach - Memories of Lakeside Living

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This was my year-round chalet on Gull Lake in the Haliburton Lake District of Ontario during the 1980s. My best friend had built a lakefront home there and when this chalet came up for sale just 4 cottages away I bought it so our families could be together - and he died a young man of 48 of a heart attack 4 years after we bought it. Being there kind of lost its lustre after that.  I think the lake was around 4 to 5 miles long.  The red dot shows its location on this map:

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The home was of fitted hewn log construction, electrically heated, on 220 feet of shoreline and about a 600 foot drive through the forested depth of the property to the gravel service road. We called it "Loon Hollow" - take your pick between it being named for those birds or for us. On the top floor our bedroom faced the Lake, with a small balcony, and a velux window over our bed so we could see the stars. Also on that floor there was a 3-piece bathroom (shower) and a big bedroom facing the forest for my son. On the main level there was a living-dining room that stretched across the building facing the lake, opening to a big lakeside deck where I had a propane barbecue. Facing the forest to the left of the photo was the kitchen and another bedroom for my daughter faced the forest to the right and the lake beyond.  Down below was a 2-level rec room with a stone wood-burning fireplace and a big TV. There was a couch there that opened to a double bed, and there was another couch/bed and third sofa in the living room. We could comfortably sleep 11 people, although there were never that many. Also on the lower level there was a 4-piece bathroom and a laundry room with a washer and dryer. We pumped water in from the lake and there was a filter hooked to a separate kitchen sink water tap that was adequate because our lake water was potable and government tested every year. There was a really superior septic tank system that we never had a problem with. It had almost all the conveniences of our city home save for a dishwasher and piped-in natural gas.

Down by the lake there was a small shack with a bar fridge for beer and storage for fishing and boating equipment. We spent weekends there through all seasons. We had an outdoor hot/cold shower and tap to hook up to a hose to flood the ice to smooth it for skating after we cleared snow off.  We had a bowrider boat, a canoe, a kayak and two snowmobiles. It was a fantastic place to rest and renew. My best friend was a short walk away, and we showed a family who were also our friends who lived in our neighbourhood a cottage that was for sale on the lake, and they bought it. And if you can believe it, even our vet had a place on the lake and spent weekends there so even our dog was secure there.  We had lots of good company.

Gull Lake was a relatively clean lake, limestone based to counteract the acid rain, a deep lake with Lake Trout and Bass. The government tests indicated how much fish was safe to eat - and we ate our share of very fresh fish.

1.   A Heineken in one hand and a rod in the other - fishing off my dock.

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2.   Just floating with our dog.  She loved boat rides, always ran to the boat when she saw us going towards it.

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3.  What a life....

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4.   Until the phone rings.....why DID we install a phone?

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5.   Canoeing with my son.

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6.   On our way to the creek.

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7.   Need a rest after all that effort.

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8.   Teaching my son how to fish. 

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9.   There is a drop in the lake bottom about 100 feet in front of my dock, with a lot of weeds, and the Bass hang out there.  I need not go far to catch one.

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10.   About the size of most of the ones I caught.  Fishermen take note:  I didn't hold it up towards the camera to make it look bigger. LOL

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11.   Showing my son's friend how to clean the fish and prepare it for the pan.

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12.   Gull Lake sunrise.  Looking up the lake while we go out on the dock early in the morning with big mugs of "Gull Lake Coffee" (one third Bailey's Irish Cream and two thirds fresh brewed coffee) to sit and listen to the Loon calls echoing down the lake through the mist.  "We have these moments to remember."

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Buzz of the Orient
Professor Principal
1  author  Buzz of the Orient    4 years ago

"Ah, but I was so much older then, I'm younger than that now."  (My Back Pages by Bob Dylan)

 
 
 
Kavika
Professor Principal
2  Kavika     4 years ago

Buzz the outdoors man in full view...Stunning to say the least. 

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Principal
2.1  author  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  Kavika @2    4 years ago

Those were the days.....

 
 
 
321steve - realistically thinkin or Duu
Sophomore Expert
4  321steve - realistically thinkin or Duu     4 years ago

Very Cool Buzz. I like the way you put these together, the story and the details to bring us into the pictures. The fact that your sharing what seems like a very homey wonderful life and lifestyle in a humble and sharing fashion is also wonderful and appreciated.  

I personally also love being around water, not so much IN it though for some reason but this part of your story I loved especially : We pumped water in from the lake and there was a filter hooked to a separate kitchen sink water tap that was adequate because our lake water was potable and government tested every year.

!!!!  I think That is way I want water in my environment in reality and in my favorite pictures. It may be some sort of a animal or survival instinct deeply ingrained in me some how I don't know. But your lake being your water source is my idea of security of life at some deep level. Perhaps because, In my whole life time I dont think I could drink a lake full of water maybe...lol   

The fresh fish right out back certainly adds a huge bonus to it...LOL  

Thanks for taking the time and effort to put this together. I'm happy you seem to have had a good, happy, fulfilling life and happy you are sharing what you do of it with us. 

PS: That Looks like a beautiful home, lake and location, I'm sure you enjoyed it, I would. 

So, Thank You, much enjoyed.

 
 
 
Kathleen
Professor Expert
5  Kathleen    4 years ago

Looks like you are relaxing and having a nice time.

Great pics, I like number 3.

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Principal
5.1  author  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  Kathleen @5    4 years ago

You know, it's a funny thing I just noticed lookng at that photo from about 30 years ago, I ALWAYS go to sleep with my left hand over my heart.

 
 
 
TTGA
Professor Silent
6  TTGA    4 years ago

Totally beautiful place Buzz.  I could easily see wanting to stay there all the time (except for the damn telephone, of course).

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Principal
6.1  author  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  TTGA @6    4 years ago

Had I not been in a profession where access to many clients and facilities such as courts and libraries were necessary I would have stayed there year round - computers, access to internet would facilitate such a life - just as I am so far removed from NT members, half a world away, it's as if you were all next door.

 
 
 
TTGA
Professor Silent
6.1.1  TTGA  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @6.1    4 years ago
just as I am so far removed from NT members, half a world away, it's as if you were all next door.

I'm glad of that Buzz, cause you're a lot better neighbor than some that I only lived 50' away from.

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Principal
6.1.2  author  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  TTGA @6.1.1    4 years ago

I'm honoured - thank you.

 
 
 
pat wilson
Professor Guide
7  pat wilson    4 years ago

Nice.

 
 
 
Krishna
Professor Principal
8  Krishna    4 years ago

Wow-- looks like paradise on earth! (I've always wanted to buy a home by the water but never did). Also that rustic living is so nice-- its wonderful to live in the woods. 

 
 
 
Spikegary
Junior Participates
9  Spikegary    4 years ago

Buzz,

I've seen some of these pics before and have to say, I don't mind seeing them again.  I can vouch for that area as being incredibly beautiful-I go up there at least twice a year for company get togethers in Minden, Ontario (BTW, the lake is 'South Lake' where the family compound is and the company HQ is located).

As you know, I'm an Adirondacks/Lake fan and everytime I go there it seems harder to leave.  Almost as if my soul demands that I be there, more and more as I grow older.

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Principal
9.1  author  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  Spikegary @9    4 years ago

I know exactly how you feel.

Yes, a few of the photos have been posted before, but more than half have not and this is the first time they have been shown together as a package.

 
 
 
Spikegary
Junior Participates
9.1.1  Spikegary  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @9.1    4 years ago

I was going to say, the pic of you on the phone....I certainly hope that those were shorts form the era......not your skivvies....

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Principal
9.1.2  author  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  Spikegary @9.1.1    4 years ago

Probably a bathing suit - everyday wear there.

 
 
 
Sunshine
Professor Participates
10  Sunshine    4 years ago

Beautiful Buzz...I could stay there forever.

My parents owned a cottage near Higgins Lake in Michigan.  Best memories are the ones we spent together at the cottage.  Snowmobiling in the winter and swimming, hiking, golfing in the summer.  The cottage backed up to state land and sometimes I would just take off walking with my dog into the forest.  I would get lost but always seemed to be able to find my way back.  A lot of friends and family around a campfire in the evenings...fresh air, crackling fire, and a lot of laughter.  Sometimes playing Euchre till late in the evening or just sitting and doing nothing.  

Although I didn't own a cottage, I took my children north many times for weekend getaways and vacations.  They also talk about how those trips where the best experiences of their childhood.  And are doing the same for their children...

 
 
 
TTGA
Professor Silent
10.1  TTGA  replied to  Sunshine @10    4 years ago
My parents owned a cottage near Higgins Lake in Michigan. 

Far out Sunshine.  Starting in 1954, when I was 6, my folks started taking us up to Otsego Lake State Park, just south of Gaylord, every summer (we lived in Bay City).  That continued every year until well after I was married, then my wife and I started doing it with our kids.  Now it's the turn of the grandkids.  One difference, though.  Their dad, mom/stepmom and I will be the ones taking them unless I get very persuasive.  My wife still loves the park and the lake but she finally figured out that camping is just housework without the microwave.

 
 
 
Sunshine
Professor Participates
10.1.1  Sunshine  replied to  TTGA @10.1    4 years ago

I just love northern Michigan and the UP.  I would love to retire up there and be a snowbird in Florida for the winter but that may be a stretch.

My wife still loves the park and the lake but she finally figured out that camping is just housework without the microwave.

It's her turn to relax and let everyone else do the work.  :)

 
 
 
Enoch
Masters Quiet
11  Enoch    4 years ago

Dear Friend Buzz: When Ted L, a good friend and business colleague was with us three generations of L's and E's would rent a cottage in summertime along the Keuka Lake. 

Daily swims and boating made for decades of photos and memories to come. 

Great article Buzz.

Peace and Abundant Blessings Lakeside and Everywhere Else.

Enoch. 

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Principal
11.1  author  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  Enoch @11    4 years ago

Hope all went well for you over the High Holidays - happy to see you back. 

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
Professor Principal
12  Perrie Halpern R.A.    4 years ago

Buzz,

What a wonderful walk through your memories. It looked like a lovely place to go.  

My family had a bungalow on White Lake, NY, which is near the Catskills. My grandmother and her sisters brought 6 bungalows there. One for each sister and 1 other to rent. They remained in my family until I was about 10. I have such wonderful pics of my dad and his sibs when they were just kids themselves. 

These kinds of pics always remind me of two songs:

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Principal
12.1  author  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @12    4 years ago

A family compound is a wonderful way for a family to stay close.  My ex-wife's family owned 4 cottages together on Stony Lake in Ontario, three for the family and one to rent, just like your family did.  I saw many photos of my ex-wife and her cousins as young children playing there. 

 
 
 
kpr37
Professor Silent
13  kpr37    4 years ago

Great article and photos. Brought back great memories of my own. Thank you. 

 
 
 
Galen Marvin Ross
Sophomore Guide
14  Galen Marvin Ross    4 years ago
10. About the size of most of the ones I caught. Fishermen take note: I didn't hold it up towards the camera to make it look bigger. LOL

Did you "pray the Rosary" when you caught that one?

I hope not. Seems to be a bad idea.

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Principal
14.1  author  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  Galen Marvin Ross @14    4 years ago

For sure I didn't "sleep with the fish."

 
 
 
Galen Marvin Ross
Sophomore Guide
14.1.1  Galen Marvin Ross  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @14.1    4 years ago

LOL, I think Mrs. Buzz would have kicked you out of bed if you did.

 
 
 
Galen Marvin Ross
Sophomore Guide
15  Galen Marvin Ross    4 years ago

I spent a little time at the beach when I was a kid.

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