Kids and Mentors Outdoors (KAMO)
Cold windy day, around freezing temp. No maple sap flowing, no eagle on the nest--must mean no egg, no chick--maybe no mate? No snow buntings either, probably on their way north.
Did trap another raccoon last night. Will save the head for my KAMO friend Steve who gives a great presentation on Wisconsin skulls and furs.
I attach a report on why people like being a KAMO mentor, from KAMO friend Donna:
Why would anyone want to be a KAMO Mentor? Here are a few responses from a few of the Mentors interviewed. Charmaine Johnson said, “Watching the kids discover the joy and wonder of nature opens my eyes up to new discoveries”. Floyd Kahl stated, “Outdoor activities are so much fun with kids”. Corwyn Blackwell says, “The opportunity to give back. I was a boy scout and those adults taught me the love of the outdoors. I want to pass that on”.
What is expected of a KAMO Mentor? KAMO Mentors are at least 18 years old. Potential Mentors provide information for a background check. They read and follow KAMO policies. KAMO annual Mentor dues are $15.00/yr for an individual and $25.00/yr for a couple. These dues help cover the cost of liability insurance. Attendance at monthly KAMO meetings is expected. These meetings are held at Flambeau River Outfitters the first Monday of each month beginning at 7 p.m. It is at these meetings Mentors plan and organize the monthly KAMO events.
How can I contribute to KAMO as a Mentor? The best part of joining a group of adults who love the outdoors is sharing your passion and exploring and learning more about the passion of other Mentors. Charmaine’s passion was kayaking, which KAMO has done with many kayaking events. However, since joining KAMO , Charmaine has shot a turkey, caught fish through the ice and become certified in Hunter Safety!!! Floyd’s passion was canoeing, again KAMO has done many canoe trip events. However, he has also learned to enjoy ‘pudgy pies’, moonlight hikes and archery events!! Corwyn’s passion is conservation. As a new Mentor in the Indianhead KAMO Chapter he contributes conservation ideas into the 2018 event plans. He looks forward to learning more about the skills and passions of other Mentors in the group. This is the best part of being a KAMO Mentor…YOU have the OPPORTUNITY to not only share your passion but have an entire group of outdoor enthusiasts to help you organize an event to ‘pass your passion’ on to others!
What advice would you give to someone thinking of getting involved with KAMO? Corwyn says, “Absolutely, it is so important. You will get what you put into it but it has the potential for being one of the most rewarding things you can do.” Floyd said, “Just do it! Don’t put it off. Seeing a kid get excited over a nice fish, shooting a bird, discovering the big dipper, there is nothing better!” Charmaine states, “Come check it out. You can start slow and join at your comfort level. Not every event we do is for everyone. You can be as involved as you want to be. Try it out! Maybe just start as an activity volunteer.”
Rusk County area Indianhead KAMO chapter will be hosting an open house, Tuesday, March 27th at the V.M.A. Center, 508 Summit Ave. in Ladysmith at 6:00 p.m. A 20 minute presentation on KAMO will be given followed by questions. Light snacks will be served. Potential Mentors/Activity Volunteers, Parents and Youth are invited.
Next weeks feature: KAMO through the eyes of the Youth.
Small KAMO group went down to the Lawrence Lake Marina Take a Kid Fishing Tournament. My pics not the best. The fishing stunk, but the kids came home with lots of candy loot from playing the ring toss and minnow race games. Left hand pic from the BBBS Catered for Kids event at the Waterfront building where some Big/ KAMO hybrids were recognized for their efforts. Hybrid means they are both a big and a KAMO mentor to a child. Pictured is big "good Mike". Not pictured is big "bad Mike".
As I left home this morning at about 10:30, a flock of about 20 snow buntings flew in kind of a circle around my car, like I have often seen. So the solitary bunting from yesterday found company! How did that happen? Is this an agreed upon meeting place? As Iris DeMent sings, I'll just let that mystery be.
On my evening stroll to the eagle nest, a single hen turkey ran through the corn field--again strange, w/o chicks, without a flock. Heard a pileated woodpecker, the big, redheaded one. No eagle at the nest, but crows flying by, high. Usually, chick or egg in the nest, there is always at least one eagle; another mystery.
Caught and killed a raccoon 2 days ago with fish skeleton as bait; this morning the cage was closed and on its side; there are at least 3 more coon around. Low prices, but will sell the hides. I'm trying to protect my summer corn crop. I've got a picture of a bobcat in the same area--that's why I'm using a cage trap.
On the way back from the eagle nest, I saw tufts of deer hair near deer tracks--Do they start losing their winter coat in March?
I am a member of KAMO Indianhead Chapter, those of us around Ladysmith WI. All of KAMO is working on how we can expand each chapter and add new chapters around Wisconsin. More on how we can do that next month, but I'd love to hear your ideas.
This evening at about 4 p.m. I decided to test my sprained ankle by hiking the half mile to the eagle nest--I thought I might have heard an eagle chick chirping earlier. On the road there, between open fields, I saw a single snow bunting, flashy black and white, robin sized bird. I have often seen flocks of about 20 in the same spot as they migrate north. As a flock, it is an impressive sight in the waning sunlight because their white wings are so shiny that it seems all you see are the wings as they do their synchronized performance. This one by itself seemed pretty lonely--is it lost? or waiting? It didn't seem injured.
With no leaves this time of year I stopped at the first good view of the eagle nest and put up my binoculars. Eagles often lay eggs in January but especially by the end of February, and I have seen them around. But the nest was empty. The chicks, if present, are too small to be visible during the first month, but I looked anyway. In about 2 minutes a beaautiful eagle swooped into the side of the nest, pecked around for 2 minutes and left. It was a warm day, still about 35 degrees F, so maybe mama eagle didn't need to keep chicks or eggs warm. Or maybe it's not egg laying time yet. I'll keep checking!
On the way back, the snow bunting was still there--why do they like that open field area? I read that they summer in the arctic.
Jim for the outdoors and KAMO
Picture from KAMO founder Mark Walters return Odyssey to Lake Onalaska. He brought a friend on this trip. Hard work and determination often times yields good luck - he camped on the ice for three days. You can catch the details of this and other adventures by going to "An Outdoorsman's Journal" on your browser.
Day two of Mark Walters trip to Lake Onalaska. Fishing has generally been slow as the oxygen is low in the water now. Mark's dog Fire loved the scraps of smoked fish that fell on the ice. Fish that were taken were stored in water filled crevice on the ice. Something that may be unique to this section of the river is that the pike, especially the large ones, feed in the darkness. One of his pike was taken at 1:00 A.M.
Coulee's sledding outing on YY on Saturday, February 10, 2018. 19 kids, 11 adults. Hill, play area, heated cabin, outhouse, fire pit, smoked trout from fishing outing at Genoa, marshmallows, chips, cheese curls. Frankfurters are the new official dog of our group and these were from St. Josephs Country Market. We extended our time for an hour because neither the kids nor the adults were ready to leave on this cold, but gorgeous day.