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Guidelines & Safety

The following are some thoughts about how to maximize your enjoyment and safety while at Kill Kare.  If you read nothing else in this guide, please make note of the following very important points.  Many thanks.

FAMILIES WITH SMALL CHILDREN

We have tried to make Kill Kare a safe place for families to enjoy with their children.  Several generations of our family have grown up here and we have never had a mishap.  Please keep in mind that we are on a lake in the woods.  We have locked the questionable things that we think children may have an interest in exploring – such as the well, the stone springhouse by the lake and the woodshed.  There are also latches on the gates on the porch to discourage curious little ones from wandering unaccompanied down to the water or into the woods.  There are interior hooks on all the screen doors. However, there is no substitute for a pair of sharp parental eyes.  Please keep track of your kids.

FAMILIES WITH FOUR-LEGGED MEMBERS

We love animals and know that they are a genuine part of the family.  That is why we welcome well-behaved pets to Kill Kare. Please make sure that your pet is current with all of its shots and has been treated for ticks and fleas.  We also ask that you not allow them on the furniture and that you not let them run free.  There are skunks – and worse – porcupines in the woods and we would hate for your pet to run afoul of either one.  For everyone’s benefit, we also ask that you please clean up after your pet on the grounds around the house.  The closest vet is in Blue Hill: Maine Coast Veterinary Hospital:  163 South Street, Blue Hill, Maine 04614, 207-374-2385. (As you approach Blue Hill, bear right at the rotary onto Rte. 172 and the hospital will be further along on your right.  This information is also on the Contacts Sheet that is with each phone in the house).

FIRE

Living in the woods – albeit on a lake – we are constantly aware of the possible danger of fire.  Kill Kare is a non-smoking environment – both inside, on the porch and anywhere on the property.  As of Spring 2016, the chimney has been fitted with a stainless steel liner.  There is also now a damper on the right hand inside of the fireplace.  Please make sure that the damper is open before lighting a fire.  To do this:  pull down on the damper chain to unhook it from the notch that holds it in place.  The chain will rise and open the damper.  To close, simply pull on the chain and rebook it in its notch.  The installers suggested that the damper can be closed 48 hours after the last fire to avoid getting smoke in the room.

The installers also suggested that we keep fires “low and slow” – a maximum of three logs on the fire at any given time.  We’d be grateful if you would adhere to this advice.

We ask of our guests:

  1. Enjoy the wonderful fieldstone fireplace in the living room but please make sure that the fire screen is in place at all times.

  2. Please never leave a fire unattended.

  3. Please do not have any open flames either in the house or on the porch.  We have provided enclosed lanterns for candles to provide light and ambiance on the porch and in the dining room.  It is imperative that you extinguish all candles before leaving the porch and the premises.

  4. Please be vigilant when using the outdoor grill.  Do not put the grill on the porch or close to the house.  Please make sure that burning coals are extinguished before leaving the premises.

  5. Please never carry lit materials into the woods.  A fire can start and travel through the delicate underground root system of the trees and it can take months to extinguish a single blaze.

  6. We are happy to provide you with “fat wood” (a fire starter) and wood for your use.  Please let us know if you need additional wood.

We have provided fire extinguishers (please familiarize yourself with how to use them) on both levels of the house and there are smoke detectors in each of the bedrooms.  There are also flashlights in each bedroom in case there is a power outage.

In the unlikely event that you need to call the Fire Department, dial 911 and report to them that you are at Kill Kare Kamp on Walker Pond (131 Windward Lane).  Direct them to take Four Winds Lane off of Route 15 at the northern base of Caterpillar Hill, bear right at the white fence and follow Windward Lane to the house on the lake at the end of the road.  (The fire department has GPS so they will surely already know the directions. These directions are also on the Contacts sheet at each phone in the cottage.)

THE LAKE

One of the joys of living in a house by the water is having the opportunity to get out onto and into the lake.  There is an outfitter nearby (The Activity Shop in Blue Hill: 207-374-3600 – they deliver and pick up) where you can rent kayaks and canoes and we encourage you to do so.   Walker Pond is about three miles long and about 1/2 mile at its widest point.  There is plenty of opportunity for exploring.  The lake is also wonderful for swimming.  Much warmer than the salt water, the lake is spring fed and quite temperate.  The bottom is sandy and gradually deepens.  There are no sudden drop-offs.  Do watch out for rocks.

While on the lake, we ask that you remember:

  1. Noise travels fast on water.  There are neighboring houses on the lake so we ask that you please be mindful of the amount of noise you make.  Don’t communicate something you wouldn’t want your neighbors to hear!

  2. Please respect and admire our wonderful Loons and waterfowl from afar.  We are very lucky to have them on our lake because they are vanishing in Southern Maine due to heavy high-speed motorboat traffic. (Loons build their nests on the water’s edge, which are washed out by the wakes of speedboats.)

  3. By the way, don’t be alarmed by the sound the Loons make when they are talking to one another.  Their shrill call can be haunting – beautifully so – especially if you have never heard it before.  But we welcome it because we feel very fortunate to have them so near. (Think Katharine Hepburn in “On Golden Pond”.)

  4. Please never swim alone or unattended.

  5. Water shoes are recommended for swimming since there can be some broken mussel shells on the lake bottom.

  6. Please use only biodegradable soap and shampoo if you choose to bathe in the lake.

  7. It is imperative that you not be on or in the lake during an electrical storm.

  8. No running, no jumping, NO DIVING from the dock or the swim float.

  9. Standing on the dock and facing the lake, there is a pile of rocks at about 11 o’clock, which used to be the mooring for the original 1917 dock.  To avoid them, swim towards one o’clock.  Signs on the dock indicate this.

Enjoy the lake.  Just please have a healthy respect for it.

WATER AND SEPTIC SYSTEM

Our water is supplied by an artesian well.  We ask that you make every effort to conserve water where possible.

The septic system has a limited capacity and must not be overused.  Please don’t operate the clothes washer and the dishwasher simultaneously.  There is no garbage disposal so please make certain that nothing but water goes down the drain.  Extraneous food particles will clog the system.

Make sure that only single-ply toilet paper (which we provide) is used in the toilets.  This means no feminine hygiene products, kleenex, baby wipes or paper towels.

THE DRIVEWAY

Since we share our driveway with several other families – both summer and year-round residents, we ask that you please drive slowly and be aware that other cars may be coming from the opposite direction.  There may also be people out for a jog or a leisurely walk.

Some of the residents are vigilant about checking out who is coming and going down the drive.  We appreciate their concern for the safety and privacy of all of the neighbors.  Just know that you may be stopped and asked why you are there.  Just respond that you are renting Kill Kare for the week.

MAINE LAWS

Just a heads up – The State of Maine has a very stringent drinking and driving law that is heavily enforced.  Please make sure that you have a designated driver who can safely negotiate the Maine roads, especially in the dark.  We also encourage you to obey all local speed limits.  The police are out in force during the summer months.

CHECKING OUT

We respectfully request that you try to leave as close to 10:00 AM as possible so our wonderful housekeepers, Barbie and Reggie, can work their magic to welcome the next guests to Kill Kare.  You may leave the key on the kitchen table.

If you would prefer not to be bothered with breakfast – and the attendant clean-up – before you leave , we can recommend several places both nearby and on your route south that will serve a hearty meal to fortify you for your trip.  Suggestions will be hanging on the refrigerator in Kill Kare.

FOR CAMP FOUR WINDS ALUMNAE

For those of you who went to Four Winds (click on the History link), you may want to walk the grounds that were once camp.   Since it is now private property belonging to the Patten family, please let us secure permission from them before you amble about.  And remember, while the Patten’s are taking remarkable care of the land, most of the camp buildings are gone.  However, the beach, the lake, the meadow flowers, the pine trees and the whispering wind will be as you always remember them.

A summer sunset on Walker Pond