Once it was said...
2000-08-21 22:58:00-05
Camping With Joy
(August 17 - 21 2000)
Ahhh - a quick weekend run to Agawa bay.
All of the previous times I`ve been there I`ve had a week or so to spend relaxing.
Now it is time to see how much I can do in a couple of days.
Joy is coming along with me, as she hasn`t camped much. It should be fun.

If you are curious as to where Agawa bay is, getting there is easy.
First, you should probably make Reservations as the good campsites fill up very fast.
Next, follow I-75 north, until you end up in Canada.
Turn Right after going through customs.
Turn Left by the building with the green roof.
Follow 17 north, until you reach Lake Superior Provencial Park
Agawa Bay is about halfway through the park.

August 17

We left in the early evening of the 17th for a run up to my family`s cottage.
The thinking was, that by leaving on a Thursday night to get a head
start, and by taking the Friday and the Monday off, we would get as
much time as possible to relax.
We didn't get there with time to do much more than relax a little.

August 18

Most of the 18th was spent driving. The drive from Lansing
to Agawa bay is about 9 hours, and while we had shaved 3 off last night,
there was still a good chunk to go today.
We had planned to leave around 10:00, but ended up sleeping in.
After a stop to get some beef jerkey 1 we were off around noon.

The drive was uneventful - we stopped in Mackinaw city to buy fudge 2 ,
and stare in awe at the people who drove hundreds of miles to visit
a mall.
After soaking in the wonderful tourist trap ambiance, it was time to cross the bridge.

   Mackinac Bridge   
Mackinac Bridge
   UP at last   
UP at last

We stopped on the other side of the bridge, in St. Ignace to eat.
I picked a random Pasty place - they were excellent. 3

We bought food before crossing into Canada.
As we were both suffering from fudge overdoses, the selection we
bought was rather strange. At least we remembered ice for the cooler.

Customs was rather strange, as we ran into Operation Power-Play - 4 but they let us go on our way.
We drove the rest of the long way - I took a wrong turn upon entering
Canada and wandered around for a half hour looking for 17 North. 5
Eventually we arrived, at 7:00 or so at night, set up camp,
ate something6, and slept.

August 19

Ahhh - nothing like waking up to the gentle light of the sun filtering
through the tent walls.
After Breakfast, we spent a while playing on some cool rock formations
at the end of the beach:
   Joy on Rocks   
Joy on Rocks
   Me on Rocks   
Me on Rocks
   Joy on Rocks   
Joy on Rocks

Wandered through the woods:
And went hiking:
   Coming down   
Coming down

We ecentually worked out way to Wawa to buy some of the supplies we had
forgotten to get. 7

We gradually worked our way back, stopping at the Pictographs and the Trappers trail on the way.

The Trapper's trail was cool, because it followed an actual trap line that had been in use until the early 80's.
Every effort was taken to keep it looking as much as possible like the
origional state. From crossing water on fallen trees, to how well hidden
a floating walkway was until you were right in front of it, the rangers
did an excellent job.

The pictographs are extremely interesting, not just for their artistic
value, but because the site takes a tendancy of the whole park to it's
logical extreme.
Throughout the rest of the park, there are two things missing that would be found everywhere in an US park:
  • Safety railings
  • Warning signs
    At all of the overlooks, trails, and other sites, everything is
    organized such as to minimize the disruption of the natural state.
    Railings, and warning signs would obstruct the view.
    The Pictographs are one of the few places with obvious warning signs.
    The signs by the pictographs site simply point out that people who aren't careful tend to die, and suggest caution.
    The actual pictographs site is a sheer cliff, with a 45o slope at the base, with waves washing from the lake up to the base of the cliff.
    The slope is extremely slippery, and the only thing to hold on to is a chain
    running along the slope.
    People viewing the pictographs have to edge along the sloped slab of wet rock,
    gripping the chain for support.
    It is not a place to go unless you trust the traction of your boots.
    August 20

    On August 20th we went on the Orphan Lake Trail. It was the longest hike we went on this weeknd, and the views were excellent.
       Orphan Lake   
    Orphan Lake

    It was very nice, with a hike through many different types of terrain; from rocky beaches, to steep climbs.

    August 21

    The 21st was spent entirely driving. We had planned on stopping at a few places on the way back, such as the Cut River Bridge,
    but once we started driving, inertia took over, and we just wanted to
    get HOME!
    We skipped dropping off the camping equipment at the cottage, and just caught
    27, and took it straight down to Lansing.

     1. The BP station on old M-76 between Alger and Skidway lake has the bes t I`ve ever had
     2. Joy also bought some Harry Potter Books
     3. The menu claimed that they were the first people to sell Pastys to the people waiting for the ferry before the bridge was built
     4. an attempt by the Department of Treasury to determine how much money left the US on one day.
     5. I went West instead of north with looking for 17 - but that truck I was following looked like it knew where it was going...
     6. A large can of Dinty Moore Beef stew, a propane stove, and two spoons
     7. We were only slightly less spaced out this time, abut once again, our food selection was rather unusual
     8. I had planned to get a shot of the Fameous Wawa Goose, but we ended up missing it.


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