Looking South on Big Bass Lake Road

This picture was taken just past the intersection where Luke’s Corner Store used to be found.  In the far distance would be Matson’s Road to the left just as Big Bass Lake makes a turn to the west.  Until then, all along this road are venue points to the North side of Big Bass Lake to your left. 

When Big Bass Lake Road makes that turn to the west, our former property began on the left side of the road all the way to the Public Landing.  It was largely forest land until just past Noreika Road (named after my grandparents) where the scenery then turns to farm land. 

One can make out Big Bass Lake barely at Matson’s Road and then again after Big Bass Lake Road makes a turn to the east just before the Public Landing.  In the 1950’s this was a dirt road but now its fully paved all the way around the lake. 

A Day at the Big Bass Lake School

At one time this was the Big Bass Lake School that my father and his sisters attended and today it serves as the Sauble Township Hall. My dad and his brothers and sisters had just over a mile walk to the school each day as there were no school buses in that era. Their teacher usually arrived about an hour before the kids and had to draw water from the well for drinking purposes that day and also to stoke the fire to keep the room warm.

Bible readings from the teacher usually began the day. In this area the teacher had their work cut out for them as it was a mix of English and Lithuanian children. I know at my dads house the children were not permitted to speak English even though they were learning it at school. Only their native language was allowed as that is all my grandparents knew.

Class would then begin. As the day progressed each class was called to the “recitation” bench. There the teacher worked exclusively with those children for a period, while the other students busied themselves studying or doing an assigned lesson. Normally there was a brief morning recess of about fifteen minutes, followed by more classes, and then an hour for lunch. The afternoon was spent much like the morning with classes and a short recess.

Every subject was studied in that one room. This school is located right down the block from the Big Bass Lake store and very close to the area softball field today. It is still standing.   On their eay home from school, some kids might have stopped off at the Big Bass Lake store for some things for their parents. 

How about a dozen eggs for 18 cents?  Or bread for eight cents a loaf?  Or pork and beans at five cents a can?  Hot dogs could be bought for eight cents a pound.  And you could get four cans of Campbell’s Tomato Soup for a quarter!  Of course most area farms were nearly self sufficient but how’d you like to find those prices today?

Luke’s Corner

I remember Luke’s Store moreso when I was a young boy. My dad and I would hike around Big Bass Lake and as we arrived at this store I would enjoy a Hires Root Beer. Funny? At the Bass Lake Store I liked Squirt but here Hires Root Beer? As I recall this was at the junction of the road to Freesoil through Bear Swamp and as you progressed back toward Bass Lake on the North side our property began at the first curve and almost ran all the way to the now public landing. That landing was once the property of Richard Bennish.

His wife Agnes was a good friend of my grandmother Barbara Noreika.

Back to Luke’s store. I don’t remember much else about that place except I believe they had a Sunoco gas pump there as well. The store couldn’t hold a candle to the Bass Lake Store and when I returned on camping trips with kids in the 1970’s this place was already closed and they had another store close to Harper’s Lake.

Ice Covered Heart Lake

This is Heart Lake which is very close in proximity to Alice Lake. Today both ice and snow cover the surface of Heart Lake. I wonder what kind of activities happen there in the winter? Snowmobiling for sure and and ice skating and ice fishing. But in this cold atmosphere, You Gotta Have Heart at Heart Lake.

Services at Faith Fellowship Church

it’s now good that Big Bass Lake has a Church right at the lake instead of having to go into Irons or a nearby community. From what I understand it is a no it is a non-denominational church which makes it even better. If any people that read our website go there leave us a comment as to what it’s like at Faith Fellowship. It is set in a beautiful location.

The Elk Township Hall Fiasco

Even the Big Bass Lake area can have its collective “fill” of politics for the building that you see here was the focus of government misuse of funds.  The old township board recently spent a great deal of taxpayer money to do surveys on whether or not this building should be replaced.  They dd a great deal of this in secret.  What was eventually found out was that basically there was little wrong with this building and it did not need to be replaced.

The board members in question had acted presumptuously and without public support and they were recently replaced.  One would think that elected officials would do the will of the people but  I suppose that the former board members were looking at the examples of our leaders in Washington DC for their misguided actions.  No one in their right minds should follow that kind of example. 

Yet now the Elk Township Board seems to be again in good hands.  Maybe now the will of the people of that area will be done for the benefit of all?!

Having a Cookout Tonight?

If desire to have a safe cookout in dry weather this is what you would need. Your fire pit surrounded by cement. More and more of these are popping up around Big Bass Lake and the neighboring Lakes. On my camp outs to our property I dug a 3-foot hole in the sand for our fire pit and the fire never spread even on Windy days. But this new fire pit idea has Merit. You can enjoy a cookout in Total Safety and still enjoy the warmth of the fire on the Outer Rim. What will they come up with next? How about a Weenie Roast tonight what’s marshmallows for dessert?

Reflections on Heart Lake

This is Beautiful Heart Lake which is about 3 miles from Big Bass Lake. It is the Twin Lake to Alice Lake where Ed Hawks used to live. Aren’t the trees reflection beautiful on the lake in the fall? And the water is as smooth as glass. I wonder how the fishing is in this Lake and how deep it is? Is it a good swimming Lake? If anyone lives at Heart Lake please let us know in by way of a comment.

Big Bass Lake Resort

This is an old picture of a resort on the north side of Big Bass Lake. I know nothing about this so that I hope our audience might know something about it? Let us know by way of a comment.

I know that there have been a couple of resorts on Big Bass Lake, chief among them Dinty Moore’s Resort on the north end of the lake and The Peacock Resort on the southwest side of the lake. Let us know if other resorts existed over the course of time at Big Bass Lake.

Don Clodfelter sent us this picture.

Big Bass Lake Field

This is the Big Bass Lake softball field and basketball court.

Behind the basketball court is a volleyball court so this area has three Sports facilities in all. They also have a concession stand and maintenance area. It is located across from Sauble Township Hall and within two blocks of Na-Tah-Ka. Just across the left Centerfield area is Faith Fellowship Church. The sports field is that the southeast corner of Big Bass Lake.

Is Tiny’s Bait Shop up for Sale?

Apparently Tiny’s is up for sale and has been for about 2 years. These kind of stores are closing right and left in this area. Luke’s corner, the K&K, the Sauble Lake Emporium, The Loon Lake roller rink, the Fun Spot, the Big Bass Lake store, and others have closed. The only area store that I know that is still open is the corner store run by Larry Bender. Perhaps the new owner will keep that business up but only time will tell.

The K&K General Store Fire Sale Bargain Gasoline

If you want to get a good gasoline bargain, head out to the K&K near Big Bass Lake where the sign says $1.72 per gallon.  Of course, that was the going price in 2007 and that is the last time the K&K was in business due to a suspicious fire that no one seems to know how it got set!  This is just another in a long line of area general stores being put out of business.

Preceding it were the Big Bass Lake Store and the Sauble Lake Emporium.  The lone one left standing would be Larry Bender’ General Store and it is no secret how he wanted the Big Bass Lake Store to go out of business.  When that store ceased operations it also began an era with no gasoline at all being sold directly on Big Bass Lake.

Maybe one of our readers would care to let us know a little bit more about the K&K.  Was this the one located in close proximity to Harper Lake?  Also are there any speculations as to just how that fire got started?  Leave us a comment with your thoughts!  By the way, this photograph came through the lens of Don Clodfelter.