Spider Lake Lodge was originally known as Moody's Camp, a fishing camp in it's earliest inception. Over time it grew into a resort.
Old Fawn in the Woods
Vintage Ariel View of Spider Lake
Formed by the glaciers of the last Ice Age, the Chequamegon (Sho-wah-ma-gun) National Forest and the Spider Lake Region are covered with crystal clear lakes, rambling streams, waterfalls, glacial moraines, erratic stone formations and an ancient mountain range.
By the late 1700s, Europeans began to find their way to the Ojibway people and the lands of the great northern forests. By the 1920's the area was heavily logged to build the cities of the East Coast and Midwest.
Moody as a Young Man
Early in the 1920s, a young Ted Moody (in the dark shirt) from Elgin, Illinois, an auto mechanic by trade, was urged by his doctor to leave the city to improve his health. Moody acquired large tracts of land from the lumber companies which no longer had use for the recently logged acreage they had harvested.
1955 Resort Mailer
Rustic Living Room
Moody, young, impulsive and fueled by his dreams, met and employed Hank Smith, a local Native American craftsman to oversee the building of his newly created Moody’s Fish Camp. Inspired by the Great Camps being built in the Adirondack Mountains of New York, The original building now known as Spider Lake Lodge, was opened to the public for the first time in 1923.
Guests Arrive by See Bee
Moody wanted to create a place for all his friends from Elgin and Chicago to enjoy, so he built several smaller cabins in the vicinity, where friends could stay for free, as long as they purchased their food and cocktails from Moody at the lodge.
Resort Dock Slips
The charismatic Moody, his wife Myrtle, along with Smith and his crew worked together for two decades building and furnishing rustic log cabins and creating a luxurious Northwoods retreat for their guests. What started as a rustic fishing camp for the men of the day, soon became an exclusive, full service, all inclusive resort complete with boating, tennis, music, fine dining and nature hikes for the whole family.
Until 1940, there was no road leading to the Camp and no electricity. The Camp was only accessible by water and was self sufficient for food, heat, light and entertainment.
Original Entrance to Lodge
By 1955, Ted Moody had grown tired of the resort business, and turned the place over to friend and good customer Dick Seitz. The Seitz family continued to build on the traditions the Moody’s had created. In 1970, the Grossi family, also from Elgin, IL, took the helm of the old resort. By the early 1980s, the resort business was beginning to face the economic realities of many older resorts. This too was to be the fate of the old Moody’s Camp.
Spider Lake Lodge, Re-imagined
In 1982-83, the real estate business became more lucrative than the resort business, and all the cabins were sold to private families. However, the Grossi family re-conceived the main lodge building as a Bed & Breakfast Inn, and opened in 1990 as the Spider Lake Lodge. Jim Kerkow and Craig Mason took over the lodge in 2000.