March 13th, 2017 in High Camp Happenings
The High Camp Community has lost a dear friend in Kelly Tjaden. We will miss his smile and adventurous personality. Kelly was connected with Scottish Lakes from the times of Bill and Peg Stark when he was a forest ranger in the area. His memory of those days was skiing up to camp and being offered a “Yardarm”, one of Bill Stark’s signature beverages. Over the years Kelly came as a guest, as staff and also a participant in work parties. He always brought with him a smile and lots of energy. He loved High Camp and made it a point to stay connected no matter where he resided over the past 30 years.
Kelly was a yahoo for Bill and Peg Stark, which means he worked up at High Camp with them which gave him the opportunity to also ski the area. In recent years he was on staff during the winters of 2009 and 2010 entertaining guests with tales of his kayaking adventures from Washington to Alaska and ski trips in Alaska and the Cascades. His kayak trip across the Bering Strait is one of the wonderful stories he shared. He truly lived from one adventure to another.
One winter Kelly built an igloo at High Point on McCue Ridge. Our winter guests could visit during their ski trips along the ridge, crawling in to see what an igloo was really like. We, of course, had to dig it out after each storm, but it was well worth it.
Kelly worked one Thanksgiving putting together dinner for the High Camp guests. He took the “boxed turkey dinners” I provided and transformed them into a gourmet meal. He was an excellent cook and took care to lay out any meal in style. After the feast Kelly joined guests in singing the entire “White Album.”
During the summer of 2015 we had a fire in the sauna building at High Camp causing considerable damage. A large wedding was scheduled for two weeks after the fire. The structure needed to be rebuilt before the big event. I called Kelly and he was on it the next day. He did a beautiful job of restoring the structure, installing a new shower and metal roof. The end result was more than a repair, the building was beautifully restored.
The stories could go on and on. Kelly enriched High Camp with his presence and his spirit will live on in the impact he made in creating a deep bond with the High Camp Community. We love you Kelly!
Christine and Eric