The red barn

Jackson Harbor Wisconsin Travel Blog

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The red barn

Dicky had a hook for a right hand. While lighting a cigarette on a hunting trip his rifle accidentally discharged. An attempt to fly him to a mainland hospital failed when the evacuation plane broke through lake ice so a local doctor had to amputate most of his arm right here on Washington Island. He was thirteen at the time and, now in his early seventies, still lives on the island and still smokes. I had met him in 1999 after riding to Jackson Harbor on 'Two Loose Knots'  with Joe and Sue and their Dalmatian named Flicka. They were long-time friends who boated to the island just about every weekend, and the ones who initially sparked the idea for this kayak adventure.

Earlier than estimated, I glided into Jackson Harbor and paddled over to the red barn.

The Klepper at Jackson Harbor
Dicky beamed a welcome smile as I tied at the dock and waved me over to the picnic table with his shiny hook. Most of the Islanders were hard working third and fourth generation fishermen or farmers but those at the table retired now. They often gathered there to sip beer and exchange stories, gossip, or island news. I learned that the 'Keep Out' signs that shooed me off Little Summer and Saint Martin were not so serious as they might have implied. They were posted after abusive visitors had started leaving trash and beer cans laying all over the place. I was able to pitch my tent next to the red barn and store the kayak inside it for a few days. It was fantastic reaching Washington Island, always my favorite, where toasting summertime beers with the Islanders was truly America at its finest.

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The red barn
The red barn
The Klepper at Jackson Harbor
The Klepper at Jackson Harbor
Rock Island from Jackson Harbor
Rock Island from Jackson Harbor
Red barn storage
Red barn storage
Jackson Harbor Wisconsin
photo by: rotorhead85