Monday, December 24, 2018

Temperatures go Down, Temperatures go Up!

When did Long Lake officially freeze over this year?  "Officially" means from shore to shore without any fissures or open areas.

On December 7th, our association observer "corps" headed by Sharon Natzel did not report any open water and declared that Long Lake had Ice In!  However, Mother Nature warmed things up and on 12/8 the lake opened up again where the folks on the hill, on the point, and across the lake could see open water.  Temperatures soared up into the 30s for a couple of days.  Eventually when it started getting colder it froze, but temperatures warmed once again.  A ten foot wide and very long fissure in the lake opened up in another area that folks on the hill could see.  It got bigger as it warmed more. We then had another blast of cold weather followed by another warm up. 

Those of us who stay all winter on the lake started to see snowmobiles, four-wheelers, ice houses, and even an occasionally car driving on the ice.  We were holding our breath hoping the ice would hold.

Therefore, the lake first froze all over on 12/7/18 as all spotters reported.  


Finally, with the cooling this week, the open area did freeze over again on the morning of 12/22/18.  So we are ice-in.


Donna Neumann had guessed December 7th and no one guessed the ice in would be on December 22nd.  The closest to that date was Barb Kersting, with December 19th as her guess. A random drawing at the annual meeting (from all entries) will determine the winner of the winter quilted wall hanging.

Sunday, November 18, 2018

Weird Weather! Your Guess on Ice IN is as Good as the Weatherman's

This video was made Wednesday, 11/14/2018.

Then the weather changed..  for the next 3 days the temperature went just above freezing and the lake was ice free again.
Today, Sunday, 11/18/2018, there is ice forming on the lake once again.

So what is your guess?

When will Long Lake be completely covered with ice?

Take a look at the past graphs and charts. (   Look at the long range forecast.

Then make your guess.
Send it in an email to
with your name and email for us to contact you.

We will collect all your guesses and from them choose by a random drawing the winner of a wonderful winter quilt hanging (pictured here) from Monika's Quilt & Yarn Shop. The quilt will be awarded during the annual meeting in June of 2019.

The person (or persons) whose entry comes closest to the actual Ice-In date will be featured in a post on the blog in December this year.

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Conditional Use Permit for RV Park Denied (Update for Members)


Dear Long Lake Area Association members, neighbors and friends,

The Hubbard County Board of Commissioners met today and DENIED the Conditional Use Permit Application for an RV Park on Long Lake.  The Commissioners deliberated and asked a number of questions regarding the proposed RV Park.

The applicant was at the meeting and presented a number of arguments as to why he felt the Conditional Use Permit should be granted.  A number of neighbors were in attendance at the meeting and spoke in opposition of the proposal.

The Board of Commissioners Meeting Minutes will be out in about a month and the exact wording will be available at that time.  Four of the Commissioners voted to DENY the (CUP) Conditional Use Permit. (Note: The commissioners vote has been updated here after checking with local newspapers. The vote was misstated in the Board's original letter because hearing at these meetings can be difficult as they do not always use their microphones consistently.)  The primary reasons why they denied the CUP were the same reasons that, as a neighborhood and as a lake association, we have been concerned about this since Labor Day weekend when the entire lake became aware of the issue.
  •  The Long Lake Area Association (Hubbard County) Inc and the neighbors are NOT opposed to commercial development on Long Lake.  They are NOT opposed to the development of additional RV Parks on Long Lake.  It was felt the location of the proposed RV Park, located within a residential neighborhood, on a sensitive wetland that would be harmed by additional boat traffic was not a good use of the property.
  • The Commissioners expressed reservations about how the land would be developed and that there wasn't a clear plan of how earth would be moved, vegetation spared and the environment protected.
  • The Commissioners expressed concern over promises made by the applicant as to how the RV Park would be developed and operated, in absence of a clear construction and operating plan, given the applicant's history of violating the Shoreline Ordinance and DNR Regulations.
We want to thank ALL of you for the tremendous efforts in coming together to help the neighborhood and the lake! There were 104 people who wrote letters and emails of concern to the Board of Adjustment/Planning Commission.  There were 83 people in attendance at their meeting.  While your letters and presence at the Planning Commission meeting did not change the outcome that day, the Hubbard County Commissioners received every letter and several read them all.  Many of you sent emails or called the Commissioners too.  The team that met with the individual Commissioners helped.  Two of the Commissioners toured the island and looked at the proposed site and the Henrietta Township roads.  We know the visits, meetings, letters, phone calls and emails made an impact on our Commissioners.

The issue was complex and our Commissioners take their job seriously.   Jobs, economic progress and tourism are critically important to the area economy and our Commissioners are rightfully very sensitive to this issue and needed to balance that with the environmental and neighborhood impact.   They did their homework, talked to neighbors, listened, asked questions, read the letters, studied data, and their reasons for denying the CUP were well thought out.

Sincerely, The Long Lake Area Association (Hubbard County) Inc, Board of Directors

Monday, October 8, 2018

October 6, 2018 Letter to LLAA Members

Dear Long Lake Area Association Members and Friends,

Here is an update on what has occurred since our last communication on 9/26/18 when we were awaiting some clarification from the Board of Adjustment & Planning Commission (BOA/PC) meeting.  We again want to make sure you have access to the important information.

Long Lake Area Association (Hubbard County) Inc, Board of Directors


   1. Please attend the Hubbard County Board of Commissioners Meeting on Tuesday, 10/16/18, at 9AM in Room 324 at the Hubbard County Government Center, 301 Court Ave, Park Rapids, MN.  We expect the Conditional Use Permit 2-CU-18 will be on the agenda for the proposed RV Park.  We will be able to listen and support our special Long Lake.  One representative of Neighborhood 6 will speak during the very short public comment period.
✔️Check agenda on 10/12/2018:  Hubbard County Commissoners_Board Meeting Documents

    2.  A small team from Neighborhood 6 will be meeting with individual commissioners next week in separate meetings.  We will focus on 4 areas:  environmental, neighborhood,  development concerns, and economic impact.  This will help the commissioners understand our perspective.

    3.    You can help now by sending an email to the County Commissioners regarding CUP 2-CU-18.  Use the same areas of concern above:  environmental, neighborhood and development concerns.  Address your comments to all 5 Commissioners – see email addresses below.  Note that they already have your comments through 9/19 and oral comments from 9/24.  So write about something different. As you write your email please tailor it with your own thoughts/words or personal examples. For the map of commissioners districts with full contact info Click Here.
        4.    Some other interesting information is contained in these attachments/links in         reference to the 9/24/2018 Board of Adjustment/Planning Commission meeting:
       5.  The LLAA Foundation granted funds for Attorney Peters who has shoreland ordinance expertise.

       6.   The video link of the 10/4/2018 Hubbard County Commissioner District 1 & 3 Candidate Forum sponsored by the Park Rapids League of Women Voters is available at the following link.  Long Lake spans these two Districts. 

    Sunday, September 16, 2018

    LLAA(HC) INC Expresses Concerns

    After the September 2nd, 2018 informational meeting of interested Long Lake property owners at Northwoods Bank and a discussion at the 9/8/18 board meeting, the LLAA Board of Directors voted to send a letter to the Hubbard County Planning Commission and Board of Adjustments regarding the proposed RV Park to be located on the northwest side of Long Lake.

    Lily Pads near proposed site
    Close up: Notice the abundance of other life near the lily pads

     The LLAA Board expressed their concerns that an RV Park at this particular lot would be detrimental to this area and the lake in general. It will significantly change the character of the channel leading to the property. These changes can affect the habitat for many plants including the lily pads (pictured), the fish, and eventually the ducks and loons. The neighbors often see loons in the area. This area is perfect for nesting loons. It is one of only five areas on the lake suitable for nesting loons.

    The Board is also concerned that stirring up the bottom sediment will release phosphorus into the rest of the lake.  This will affect the water quality/clarity for the entire lake as the water flows from the north to the south. 

    The Board included in its letter its responses to all of the variances and the Conditional Use Permit.

    Residents of Long Lake are encouraged to express their own concerns and attend the September 24, 2018 meeting of the Board of Adjustment and Planning Commission.

    Address Information Required for your comments.  Include:
    Subject: 2-CU-18 and 31-V-18. 
    Your complete name and address of residence, plus 
your Hubbard County address if applicable. 

    Send to
Eric Buitenwerf
, Environmental Services Director
    Hubbard County Environmental Services 
    301 Court Avenue

    Park Rapids, MN 56470

Wed 9/19/18 - 4:30PM - Final deadline for written comments for the CUP 2-CU-18 and the variance application 31-V-18. Comments received are provided to the BOA on 9/20 morning in time for the onsite property reviews.

Thurs 9/20/18 - 9:05AM (Plus or Minus 30 minutes) - Expected time for the Onsite Property Review to begin for the proposed RV Park. (So be there earlier than 9:05, like 8:50 AM, in case the BOA is ahead of schedule.) The public can observe the BOA onsite property review by following behind the BOA once they arrive and observe and listen. Please do not enter the lot until after the BOA arrives.

Monday 9/24/18 – 6PM - BOA Meeting for the Variances for 31-V-18 and others on agenda. The Planning Commission meeting follows the BOA meeting. During each meeting, there is a public comment opportunity for 3 minutes speaking time limit per speaker per agenda item. See the Meeting Procedure on Environmental Services Website or on the LLAA website on the Shoreland Ordinance tab.


    Friday, September 7, 2018

    Information Concerning Proposed RV Trailer Park on Long Lake

    Below is the letter that has just been emailed to all members on the details of a proposed RV Trailer Park on Long Lake. 

    September 6, 2018 
    Dear Long Lake Lakeshore Owners, 

    We want to inform you about applications for a Conditional Use Permit (CUP) and 5 variances to the Shoreland Ordinance (1 is an after-the-fact) that are being requested by a Long Lake property owner to build and operate a high density RV park on the northwest shore of Long Lake in the shallow bay on the north side of Pine Island (an area identified by the DNR as a public water wetland). The address is 18080 Emerald Island Circle, Hubbard County Parcel ID: 13.42.05000. 

    The proposal is to establish 14 RV sites, 6 tent camping sites, plus a bathhouse on 4.25 acres. The extended boat dock would be capable of housing 8 boats and lake service providers would be allowed to install boat lifts and/or personal watercraft lifts. For further details about the applications please see the Environmental Services Agenda. (You will see the link below.)  Please note the following sections:
    CUP 2-CU-18 page 35 ”Site Plan Parcel 13.42.05000” to orient you, plus page 55 “Conditional Use Permit – responses to August 29, 2018 letter” where it states “The shooting range will

    Thursday, July 26, 2018

    Pipeline Update

    On June 28th, 2018 the Minnesota Public Utility Commission gave a verbal approval for the southern route for Enbridge (Line 3) pipeline carrying Alberta tar sands to Wisconsin.

    The approved route is Enbridge's preferred route (APR) and is shown in black in the map below. This segment is the option furthest away from Long Lake on this map.  The Line 3 route needs 29 permits.
    See:  Governor's 6/28/18 statement on Enbridge Line 3
    More details will be known once the PUC issues a written statement.

    It is worth noting that the PUC went against the recommendation of the Minnesota Administrative Law Judge who after reviewing all the (numerous) submissions, recommended that the old Line 3, which takes a direct route to Superior, be removed and that the new Line 3 be put in its place.
    State of Minnesota Administrative Hearings Report, Enbridge Line 3 pdf

    For more background information, listen to several excellent Minnesota Public Radio reports at:
    MPR News, Rivers of Oil

    Thursday, July 19, 2018

    Update on Christmas Lake Weevil Pilot Project

    Edited from an Article written on July 3rd by Jeff Forester of MN Lakes & River Advocates:  

    This summer the Christmas Lake Association is testing to see if a weevil native to Minnesota can be used to eat and control Eurasian water-milfoil.

    Click here to see WCCO's video about the project

    Lake Associations struggle with fundraising, and often face huge lake treatment bills for problems like Eurasian water-milfoil, etc.  Lake Association leaders fear that their membership is aging and they are searching for ways to engage younger members.

    Yesterday, I, along with other lake association leaders, DNR personnel, and MAISRC, toured a pilot project on Christmas Lake that could provide a solution strategy for both of these issues.  

    The pilot is based on research by Dr. Sallie Sheldon, Middlebury College, VT.  She has developed a process to catch native weevils out of a lake, raise them on the invasive Eurasian water-milfoil, and then release these weevils back into the lake to achieve some control of the invasive and costly plant.

    Dr. Sheldon was a speaker at the Aquatic Invaders Summit held last winter sponsored by Minnesota Lakes and Rivers Advocates, (MLR).  MLR has been working with Dr. Sheldon and Paul Hamilton, Norway Lake Association, and a Minnesota science teacher, to develop a way to package Dr. Sheldon's work and a curriculum so that lake associations can partner with local school or youth groups to engage youth in water related science while working to control milfoil, all at a lower cost than traditional management strategies.

    Science is a key value for MLR.  As the land of 10,000 lakes, we believe that Minnesota should have the most rigorous and engaging water sciences programs in the country and that they should begin in grade school.

    Anytime we can achieve control of an invasive species without impacting the native plants, that is a win.  If we can do that at a lower cost, that is a win win.  If we can do it while engaging a new generation in lake advocacy, that is a WIN WIN WIN.

    In 2012 and 2013 the Minnehaha Creek Watershed District began a three year pilot, putting 30,000 weevils into the lake.  The program was interrupted in 2014 when the company hired to do the work pulled out.  Said Joseph Shneider, Christmas Lake Association President, “We started to see dramatic improvement a few years later.  You could argue that milfoil is no longer a problem on Christmas Lake. Dr. Sheldon believes that another year or two

    Sunday, July 15, 2018

    2018 Annual Meeting Recap

    We had 90 people come to the Long Lake Area Association meeting on June 30th.  Barb Roberts organized the registration very well and everyone was registered with ease.  There were 47 families registered at the meeting this year.

    Click here for a list of all our door prize winners

    The Association made available AIS related items such as coasters, sponges to "Clean, Drain & Dry" boats, and PVC tubes to place at docks for sampling zebra mussels to families in attendance.  Also there were free trees to prevent soil erosion - potted pines from the White family.

    Thank you to Betty Larsen for the great refreshments and the festive decor, too!  Thanks to Monika Wilkens for the great story ending with the aurora borealis over the lake to lead off the meeting.  And last, but certainly not least, thank you to Jason Durham, our speaker from Go Fish! Guide Service, for entertaining us with his stories and sharing his fishing expertise.

    The video at the following link is a collection of the pictures and video taken during our annual meeting:

    The LLAA board page on this website has been updated.  Please click here to see our new board of directors.

     Below are pictures from 4th of July Week activities.
     A few boats came out for the Flotilla despite its cancellation due to the threatening weather.
    Joyce Nelson shared a picture of one of the boats decorated for the Flotilla
    Largest Walleye for David Rix. 29.5 inches ( without pinching tale) caught on Wooters Point.
    Lady Slippers
    Photo by Barb Roberts

    Wednesday, July 4, 2018

    Due to unstable weather: Flotilla is Cancelled

    The forecast with its potential for thunderstorms has cancelled our Flotilla today.  Have a safe and fun 4th of July. 

    (if you take good pictures of your alternative 4th of July activities today..please send them along to us at 

    Tuesday, July 3, 2018

    Lake Life Safety

    Good Reasons to Use those Life Jackets.

    A life jacket has additional safety purposes to consider:
    • A life jacket will help protect a person against hypothermia, an important threat when a rescue might be slow in coming. The jacket will help keep a person's head above water, so it stays dry, and it will help hold in body heat. Instead of exerting heat and energy in treading water, people wearing life jackets can pull their legs into their chests, which slows the escape of body heat.
    • Most life jackets are brightly colored to aid in rescue efforts.
    • Life jackets can absorb some of the impact of a fall and minimize injuries.
    • Few people plan to fall overboard. When someone ends up in the water who didn't expect to be there, a life jacket can provide some valuable time in adjusting to the shock. *Most people thrash around when panicked; a life jacket helps the user right himself and keep the head above water.
    The above information is quoted from an article on the "How Stuff Works" website.

    Monday, July 2, 2018

    How Creative Can your Family Be this Year?

    The annual Long Lake 4th of July Flotilla will be held this Wednesday, weather permitting.
    We will gather at New Frontier Resort on the West side of the lake by 9:50am. Follow the North or South Leaders as they lead off the two branches of the flotilla at 10am.  If there is inclement weather (high winds, rain, thunderstorms) at 9am on that day, the Flotilla will be cancelled.
    Join us in Celebrating the 4th! 

    Thank you to all who attended the annual meeting on Saturday.  We had 90 in attendance.  For those of you who were unable to attend, please send your membership dues for $25 for this fiscal year (July 1, 2018 - June 30, 2019) to LLAA, P.O. Box 808, Park Rapids, MN  56470.

    If you haven't already read it, our LLAA Spring Newsletter is available on our website on the Newsletters page - or see it at this link:  Spring 2018 Newsletter

    Sunday, June 17, 2018

    Announcing our LLAA Annual Meeting: 6/30/18

    Join us at the Long Lake Area Association (Hubbard County) Inc Annual Meeting on Saturday, 6/30/18, at the Hubbard Community Center, Hubbard, MN.

    Meeting Overview:
    • 9:30 AM:  Social, Refreshments, & Registration/Dues for 7/1/18 – 6/30/19.
    • 10 AM:  Business Meeting is speaker Jason Durham, well-known guide and sport fishing educator of “Go Fish! Guide Service Inc”.  He is sought out as one of the best teachers of fishing and author of many freshwater fishing publications. Several Long Lake families have enjoyed fishing with Jason. 
    • Neighborhoods #1, #3, #5, and one “At Large” Elections.
    • Awards for Ice In & Ice Out and for the Fishing Challenges, both the children's and adult's.
    • Win Door Prizes and Learn about upcoming Events!
    • Invite your Neighbor – Open to the Public.

      Adults - don't forget to email your entries for the Adult Fishing Contest by June 24th. You can email them to  See details at the link below:

      Adults Long Lake Fishing Challenge
      Read LLAA's newsletters by clicking here
      read last year's annual minutes that will be approved at this meeting.  

      Monday, June 11, 2018

      Gabby's Fishing Story

      Gabby, age 11, caught this large mouth bass in “Sunfish bay” around 7:30 in the evening using a leech for bait.  She was fishing with her cousin, grandma, mom, and siblings.  Gabby loves to try to out fish her cousins!

      Friday, June 1, 2018

      Join us for AIS Information Day

      What:  U of MN Aquatic Invasive Species Research Center (or MAISRC) Update followed by a Legislative Listening Forum.
      When:  Friday, June 8th 2018, from 9:15am to 3pm.
      Where:  M State Campus, Large Auditorium (C101), 900 Hwy. 34 East, Detroit Lakes, MN

      Research Updates:
      • An overview of MAISRC
      • Zebra Mussel research
      • U of MN Detectors & Trackers program
      • Starry Stonewort
      • Impacts of Zebra Mussels and Spiny Water Flea on Mille Lacs Lake.
      Legislative Listening Forum:  Area legislators and candidates invited.

      Click to Enlarge
      There is no fee for this event, however, we would like you to register for planning purposes by calling 218-846-0436 or email:

      Lunch will be served - free will offering.

      Follow these links to brochure details:

      Taylor's Entry into the Kids' Fishing Contest

      Taylor, age 8, caught this large mouth bass on Memorial Day around 9am near Dakota Shores while fishing with her cousin, Owen. She was using leeches for bait. Taylor loves to fish with her cousins and try to catch the bigger fish!

      Wednesday, May 23, 2018

      The Belted Kingfisher

      (This article first appeared in our Spring 2018 Newsletter.)

      The Belted Kingfisher
      by Dante Beretta, April 17, 2018

      The bird sits perched on a branch at shore-side waiting patiently for the right moment. All of a sudden it dives rapidly head first into the lake coming up with a fish for its dinner. This bird is the Belted Kingfisher, a common summer visitor to Long Lake.

      The Belted Kingfisher is commonly found in summer throughout the U.S. wherever there are suitable bodies of water for its habitat. Like many other birds (and people) on Long Lake, these are ‘snowbirds’, moving down south for the winter. I have seen them many times in Florida and the Caribbean, especially in lagoons.

      A mid sized bird with a large head and a distinctive mohawk crest, the Belted Kingfisher is easy to identify. Sometimes you can only see the profile but this is sufficient to tell it is a kingfisher.

      In good light, you can see the slate blue coloration of its back and breast band. In many of species of birds, males are brighter than females (think Cardinals, Hummingbirds, Orioles). In an an apparent reversal, the female Belted Kingfisher is showier than the male, as she sports a rust color band on the belly.

      Often when I’m kayaking at Long Lake, I hear the kingfisher's territorial call, a repetitive chattering. I don’t really understand bird guide books description of bird calls, but the kingfisher has such a distinctive call that you can quickly learn to recognize it.

      Keep an eye and ear out for the Kingfisher on Long Lake this summer.

      These 2 drawings of Kingfishers by Dante Baretta's can be seen in a larger size by clicking on them. 


      ★ Note:  Our Long Lake Area Association annual meeting is coming up on Saturday, June 30, 2018 at the Hubbard Community Center.  Social time, refreshments & registration start at 9:30 AM with the business meeting starting at 10 AM. This year's speaker is Jason Durham, a well-known guide and sport fishing educator.

      Saturday, May 5, 2018

      The ICE is officially OUT! May 5, 2018

      Long Lake, 5/4/18, with a small bit of ice left by Sharon Natzel.
      We have word from the variety of spotters around the lake that the last small patch of ice still floating (seen this morning) has now melted with today's wind and warm temperatures.  There is no ice evident this afternoon.

      Therefore the official Ice Out date for Long Lake is 5/5/18.

      Sharon will be reporting the information to the government ice-tracking sites and our Ice statistics team.  We update our ice data page when the stats are completed.

      Ninety-one people sent in guesses as to the date of Ice Out this year!  Everyone is part of a random drawing for the prize quilt, with the winner being announced at our annual meeting on June 30th at the Hubbard Township hall.

      Photo by Linda Johnson of a previous ice out in progress.


      There were 2 guesses for Ice Out to be on May 5th.  Congratulations to Randy Williams and Pete & Carol Click.  They won the 2018 bragging rights to being the best prognosticators.

      Wednesday, May 2, 2018

      Pine Haven Resort in the 1960s

      I found a couple of old post cards that my grandparents, Harold and Delpha White, had made for the resort they ran on Long Lake from late 1940s until 1967.  It was called Pine Haven Resort and was located on the north end of Chippewa Loop..(then named Chippewa Drive).  The resort had 4 cabins for rent and mostly they were rented by the same families during the same part of the summer each year. My grandparents also had a small store to sell eggs, milk, ice cream, pop candy etc.  They also had a gas pump with an oil tank so that people could buy gas & oil for their outboard motors.  The one thing most of the "old time residents" remember is the ice house.  My grandfather harvested ice from Long Lake and stored it in an open building packed with sawdust. The ice would last until Labor Day.  Until 1955 we ran an ice route that delivered blocks of ice to many of the cabins along Chippewa Loop and Beach Haven.  After 1955 people could still come to buy blocks of ice but they didn't deliver them any more. 

      Friday, March 23, 2018

      Time to Guess an Ice Out Date

      Its been 94 days (as of 3/24/18) since Long Lake froze over for the winter.  According to our charts the earliest date for Ice Out was 3/26 in 2012.  The latest date for Ice Out was 5/11 in 2013.  For the next 10 days the Weather Channel is showing that Park Rapids will have temperatures hovering around 30° and maybe reaching the 40's for a day or two, however, the overnight temperatures will continue to be below freezing.  It does not appear Ice Out will be early this year!

      So when will the ice leave Long Lake this year?

      What is your guess?

      Post your guess in a comment on the Facebook post or you can email your guess to

      The person or persons with the correct guess as to when the ice is completely off the lake will be recognized on Long Lake Living's website and Facebook page.

      All participants in this contest will be entered into a drawing for a quilt from Monika's Yarn & Quilt Shop in Park Rapids.

      Below are links to ice out information to help with your guess.

      Quilt for the drawing

      Sunday, March 11, 2018

      Challenge for Ages 16 and Up

      Evan Kooyer caught this 25 inch walleye, Feb. 24, 2018, while ice fishing on Long Lake
      Hey fishermen and women,

      Have you been recording your catch for the Adult Fishing Challenge?  Winter is almost done.  Did you go ice fishing?  Catch any big ones on Long Lake?  You should print off the entry form for the Long Lake Association Adult fishing Challenge.  Record the length of that great fish before you forget.  Show off your skill by catching a "big one" of each species.
      • Follow all MN Fishing Regulations! 
      • Fish often! 
      • One Entry per Person ages 16 and above. 
      • It is not necessary to include a length for each fish listed, but we encourage everyone to try and catch at least one from each species.
      • Top 3 totals will be awarded prizes ($25, $15, $5) at the 2018 Annual Meeting and you do not need to be present to win. Winners will be notified by email and information posted on the website.
      • Photos are not necessary for this challenge, but we all like seeing fishing pictures and hearing fish stories, so please send them along at any time to for posting on and Facebook.
      Find out how to send your entry by clicking here.

      Saturday, February 3, 2018

      Long Lake's Water Quality, A Twenty Year Report

      Did you know that it takes about 4 years for water to  flow through Long Lake?  We need to be vigilant by checking the water year by year.  Our team of volunteers has been sampling the water for the last 20 years to monitor any accumulation or trends.  Our association has been paying RMB Environmental Laboratories to analyze the samples.  Their 20 year report is given on our web page:  Water Quality Data  and at this link:  Full Water Quality Report.

      The report shows that Long Lake continues to be one of the best lakes in the region for water quality, recreational opportunities, and nurturing fish.  The 20 year report concludes with the following paragraph:  The good news is that for now, the water quality of the lake is not declining. There is a tipping point, though, at which more phosphorus addition can cause a decline in water quality.  A DNR study on phosphorus sensitivity placed Long Lake in the highest category group for most sensitivity to added phosphorus.  Conversion of more land to development or agriculture should be carefully planned, and its effect should be mitigated through the implementation of best management practices.”

      Run-off into the lake increases phosphorus, which increases algae growth.
      The report states that this can be limited by:
      • Homeowners restoring shoreline and using rain gardens.  See:
      • Limiting agricultural run-off by wetland restoration, shoreline buffers, and forest cover.
      • Installing conservation easements and aquatic management areas in new developments.

      Let’s all be proactive to preserve our lake.  We are grateful to all the sampling teams over the last 20 years, including our current samplers Al and Patti Kiecker along with Sharon Natzel.  The sampling has enabled phosphorus, nitrogen, chlorophyll, chloride, alkalinity, dissolved oxygen, conductance, suspended solids, transparency, and color to be tracked.

      This news item is brought to you by the Long Lake Area Association.

      Friday, January 12, 2018

      Long Lake Resident is Remembered

      At his cabin on Enchanted Drive
      John Gary "Gus" Gustafson, age 85, of White Bear Lake passed away peacefully surrounded by his loving family. He was preceded in death by his parents, Ernest and Margaret Gustafson; sister Mary; and first wife Donna. Gus is survived by his loving wife Ruby of 46 years; children Jim Gustafson, Dawn (Dale) Hammerschmidt, Jennifer Slupe, Beth (Mike) Mustar, Peter (Tina) Walker, Ann (Tom) Hersman, Nancy (Paul) Melquist, and Paul (Mary) Walker. He was idolized by twenty grandchildren, their spouses, and eight great-grandchildren; siblings Kent (Vicki) Gustafson, Karen (Dale) Kjensrud, Sheryl (Kirby) Borden, and Margo (Mike, dec.) McCormick and many nieces and nephews.

      Gus grew up on a farm outside of Windom, MN. He served in the Army overseas during the Korean conflict. A graduate of Gustavus Adolphus College in St. Peter, he was drafted by the Green Bay Packers in 1957. An injury sustained in a preseason game put an early end to his playing career. In 1961, Gus married Donna Reinhardt. They had three beautiful children. Donna passed away following a valiant fight with cancer. In 1969, Gus married his high school sweetheart Ruby. Along with her 5 children, they became a family. Gus' teaching and football coaching career spanned over 40 years, mostly at North St. Paul High School, and included winning a state title in the 70s. He was recognized by former students everywhere he went. He was inducted into many Halls of Fame, including: Windom Area High School, Minnesota Football Coaches, Gustavus Adolphus, and was selected as the Minnesota High School Track coach of the year in 1979. He also served as president of the Old Timers Football Association.

      Besides his family, his greatest love was being at his cabin on Long Lake outside of Park Rapids. He loved to rake the woods, split firewood, have raging bonfires and drink a beer (or two) in the sauna.  Memorials may be sent to Redeemer Lutheran Church, White Bear Lake MN or the Long Lake Area Association, P.O. Box 808. Park Rapids, MN 56470.

      Published in Pioneer Press on Jan. 7, 2018