Fall turned summer

LAKE COUNTY — With 90-plus degree temperatures the past several days, area residents have been trying to find relief for the heat wave which is so unusual for late September in northern Michigan.

People enjoyed this last stint of summer weather with swimming, fishing, riding motorcycles, traveling to beaches on Lake Michigan, having cookouts and making stops for their favorite ice cream.

Baldwin resident Susan McConnell spent the weekend enjoying boat rides with her family on Big Star Lake.

"It was amazing getting to spend time on the lake this weekend," she said.

Instead of setting up for bow season as he always does this time of year, Timothy Bunch found himself fishing instead.

"This last Sunday marked one week until the opener for deer bow season, but that’s not what the thermometer said. As often as possible, my family and I drive up from Kalamazoo to enjoy some of God's country in Lake County," he said. "Normally this time of year we're in flannel shirts tweaking our tree stands, checking trail cams and spreading carrots for the critters. Not this time. Shorts and T-shirts along with plenty of water was the deal this past weekend.

"My teenage son was really looking forward to getting some serious squirrel hunting in, and he did do some, but had to pace himself because of the heat. I, on the other hand, had a hard time getting into the mood for hunting with this heat, so instead, I spent the weekend bass fishing. I was fighting 'weather inversion' with 'game inversion.' That’s the great thing about Lake County, there’s plenty to do. When we got too hot, a chocolate malt from Jone’s Homemade Ice Cream helped cool us down. Usually when temperatures are cooler and the leaves begin to change, which I call this flannel shirt season, is when buck fever starts kicking in. It’s coming, just not yet.

Chase resident Kelly Lodholtz didn't let the summer-like weather divert her from her favorite fall tradition, baking.

"I need my fall fix," she said. "It has been crazy hot and I need a reminder that fall is here, so I have been baking pumpkin scones, banana bread, pumpkin coffee cake and a new recipe, pumpkin snickerdoodles. I had to do what I do in the summer when it's super hot and I bake — put a window fan in the window above the sink to let a little cool air in. It helps, but it still gets way too warm for anyone in the family to join me in the kitchen.

"It has been feeling a lot more like July than September. My family and I went swimming at Rose Lake on Sept. 23. Now that is crazy."