Lots to see at Caroga Lake

Besides the new TV shows and movies out for the new year, we still have the ever-new entertainment outside our front window here at Caroga Lake. While we can watch water skiing, fishing, swimming, boating and sailing in the summer, a whole new crop of entertainment is outside our front window in the winter.

How anyone can sit on the freezing ice in winter to wait for a fish, I don’t know. What amazes me the most is seeing grown men sitting in beach lounge chairs on the ice with their legs stretched out and a drink in hand, waiting for their bait to catch a fish. They use what is called tip-ups to notify them when they’ve caught a fish.

Yesterday on the lake I saw something that I had not yet seen – a snowmobile pulling a small child on a sled. This seems to be incredible. I would think a small child would get cold fast. But not so, as these kids were smiling ear-to-ear with joy playing with their friends on the ice.

They started out on the ice at 10 a.m., and honestly there were people still on the ice as the sun was going down. There were even snow machines out there on the ice with their headlights on too. I must have shaken my head countless times to say, “They’re nuts.”

When I was in my late teens and early 20s I always enjoyed ice skating and down-hill skiing, but I haven’t yet seen a skater on this ice. Maybe because there is too much snow on the ice to clear off.

When Herman directed Big Brothers/Big Sisters, we had a cross country ski-a-thon as a fundraiser one year. I participated by way of ski-toboggan, which Herman pushed. Because it was so pristine and the trails are so beautiful, Lapland Lake was a great place for the event. We really appreciated the hospitality of its owners, former Olympic gold medal skier Olavi Hirvonen and his wife Anne.

When I used to participate in ice skating and down-hill skiing, I think my favorite activity was sitting in the lounge afterwards in front of a roaring fire place drinking hot cocoa. I was pleased to see that Lapland Lake also had a lounge with a fire place and hot cocoa to warm up afterwards. As for myself, I’m satisfied these days to watch the ice fishermen and snow machines and children playing out there. The best part is I have a wood burning fireplace that I can sit by as I watch these people outside in the cold from my large picture windows as I drink my cocoa.

I hope you all have a warm and cheery winter as we move further into the new year. I enclose pictures of recent views out our front window.

Kathryn Spira, a native of Cleveland who pursued an acting career in New York City and Los Angeles, now pursues freelance writing from Caroga Lake in Fulton County. Previous columns and contact information may be accessed at her website,