By David Cowardin
Duluth Outdoors Editor
If you haven’t been to the mouth of the Lester River since the flood hit in June, it’s worth checking out: Rocks and debris have formed an island resembling a crescent moon about 50 feet from shore.
When I first saw it, many thoughts came to mind:
What will it look like in the spring when hundreds of fishermen jockey for position at the mouth of the Lester River?
What about in the winter when Lake Superior throws its frozen surf to shore?
Late at night when a crescent moon is high in the sky, will it look like a reflection of the celestial world?
And how fun would it be to build a fire on it?
Most of these thoughts require waiting; things imagined and romanticized. Except for the last one … building a fire on the crescent moon. With the help of Duluth Outdoors writer Rachel Kraft, that thought came to life.
The August sun was bobbing on the horizon when I started gathering firewood to transport to the island. I didn’t skimp on the big logs, knowing the rest would burn fast and require another trip to shore. Once the wood was situated in the back of my car, I cinched the canoe to the roof and waited for Rachel to meet me.
Together we made our way up the shore toward Lester River, canoe straps flapping in the wind and hitting the side of the aluminum hull. The sound reminded me of the many canoe trips my father and I took when I was young. He would always ask me why I didn’t tie the straps down better as we pulled over to fix my shoddy knots. But tonight I let them flap in sporadic rhythm because the sound reminded me of good adventure and good company.