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RuffChaser

Setters and the North Shore (MN)

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RuffChaser

My wife and I took a last minute, long weekend vacation to the North Shore of MN last weekend. It is our favorite place in the world to be. Well mine is the grouse woods but she doesn't go there often. Contrary to what some experience our setters love the water. For those of you that have never been there it is unlike any other area in MN. It looks and feels more like the coast of Maine or the Pacific NW. Here are some pics. We take a lot of pics of the dogs when we are there. We spend most of our time hanging out on the shoreline or hiking with the dogs.

 

These are two fishes houses built right on the edge of Lake Superior , "the  big lake", near the Canada border. The men that made their living fishing these areas were tougher than I could ever dream of being. I can't imagine how cold it would be there in winter.

 

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Chip trying to dig a piece of quartz out from some of the "big rock" that makes up most of the coast.

 

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Chip drying in the sun:

 

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My big strong boy is nearing the end. I knew it was coming but I'm devastated none the less. He has arthritis in three joints and is having a very hard time getting around. It was very apparent during our trip that he is struggling. I told my wife it was most likely his last trip there. He has always loved the water. I spent much of the weekend comforting him and reflecting on our life together. More to come on this in the coming weeks/months as we try to help ease his pain and maybe prolong his life a few more months. He's in great health otherwise but I'm sure he's in pain.

 

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Betty, our setter girl and the youngest of the three. She's a beautiful dog and is so much fun to be around. 

 

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When we weren't on the beach or rocky coastline we were chilling at the house we rented. There was plenty of entertainment for the setters there:

 

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Thanks for looking. If you ever get a chance take some time and visit it’s a fantastic place. Tons of hiking trails, waterfalls, and if you are willing to drive some back roads a chance to see some moose, wolves, black bear, etc.

 

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mister grouse

A very thoughtful tribute to your setters and how much they mean to us year round.  Never an easy thing for us to watch them teter and then slip over the edge of a normal hunting life.  Been through that too many times myself.  Lucky you have some younger dogs to ease the process.

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RuffChaser
13 minutes ago, mister grouse said:

A very thoughtful tribute to your setters and how much they mean to us year round.  Never an easy thing for us to watch them teter and then slip over the edge of a normal hunting life.  Been through that too many times myself.  Lucky you have some younger dogs to ease the process.

 

Thanks! All my dogs are related. Haze is Chip's sire. Betty and Haze have the same Dam so they are half siblings despite their age difference. They will make it easier but Haze is my first pet of any kind. I got into the bird dog world late in my life. Too late in retrospect. He will always be my favorite. He may not always be my best hunting dog but will always be my favorite dog. He reinforced that my choice of setters was the right one for me.

 

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Skybuster

Beautiful pups. My Lab is 12 now and has the same old age maladies as your setter. His hearing is going as well.  I've trout fished the Knife, French, and Sucker rivers that empty into the lake north of Duluth. Beautiful country indeed.

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BlacknTan

A beautiful post in every way.. but it made me a bit sad...

 

I hope you find a way to make your grand Setter a bit more comfortable..

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sloth5202

Your post almost made me shut off the lights in my office and pack up the dogs to head up 35 for the weekend.  The old guy Gus is also starting to feel his age and I think that the shores of the Kitchi-Gami would do him and I some good.  Thanks for the post.

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RuffChaser
2 minutes ago, sloth5202 said:

Your post almost made me shut off the lights in my office and pack up the dogs to head up 35 for the weekend.  The old guy Gus is also starting to feel his age and I think that the shores of the Kitchi-Gami would do him and I some good.  Thanks for the post.

 

Those shores have a way of fixing a lot of things. We go up there every year and had thought about not going this year. We were really focused on remodeling but we were stressed out and the dogs needed to be where it was cooler and burn off some steam. It is never a bad idea to make a last minute trip there. I am sure that cold water felt great on his inflamed joints.

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Up North

Friends use to have a cabin in Horse Shoe Bay, by Hovland. Have fond memories exploring the Arrow Head trail, and the lakes around it!

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duluthUPLAND
51 minutes ago, sloth5202 said:

Your post almost made me shut off the lights in my office and pack up the dogs to head up 35 for the weekend.  The old guy Gus is also starting to feel his age and I think that the shores of the Kitchi-Gami would do him and I some good.  Thanks for the post.

Going to be a beautiful weekend up this way... excellent decision!

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Remo

Thanks for the pics of this beautiful area and good luck with the old guy. Always hard at the end.

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Jack L

Going through the process you and Chip are experience is never easy. You're doing nice things for him. He does appreciate it.

 

The North Shore is a wonderful place.  I've convinced my wife that spending some part of the summers up there after we retire would be a good thing.

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