The 1,000-Mile Great Lakes Adventures

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Time on the Lakeshore



Here are some highlights from my time at the lakeshore this fall.

Even after encircling Lake Michigan with my footsteps and recording it in my muscles and bones, the lake continues to captivate me.

Next year I will undertake another 1000-mile hike in the Great Lakes region.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

In the Shadow of Giants

Two hundred years ago it was easier to move through Michigan by water -- rivers and the Great Lakes -- than to move through the land.

That's because the land had old growth forests that were dense and impassible in places.








While walking the lakeshore this November, I followed a stream inland, tracing the water's path as it meandered toward the lake.







The trees that lived near the stream shaded
the area and their fallen leaves decorated the surface of the slow moving stream.









This oak towered over the other trees.


It's not old growth, but it is a grand tree

and a glimpse of the past when this size
tree would have been growing in the

shadows of giants.

Monday, November 7, 2011

CMU Students Give Back

Last month I had the privilege of speaking to Professor Lorie Tuma's class at Central Michigan University. Her students are studying in the tourism and hospitality fields and many of them are also shooting for a leadership minor.

Part of the leadership minor is doing community service, and a large group of students headed north to give back in Rogers City, Michigan. The Purple Martin Nature Center & Lakeside Inn was recently certified by the National Wildlife Federation as a Wildlife Habitat. The mission of the Inn is to not only provide an ultimate retreat, but for the owner, Cindy Vezinau, to fulfill a lifelong passion of providing a respite program to children in the foster care system.

The CMU students put in a day of hard work renovating the old building and working on the grounds of the center on the shores of Lake Huron.



. .

Renovation in Rogers City from EHS Life on Vimeo.

Next year, my 1000-mile hike will take me along the shoreline by the center. I will be sure to stop in to check on the progress of getting The Purple Martin Nature Center & Lakeside Inn renovated and open to do this important work.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Sand Landscapes


The waves of Lake Michigan constantly pulse or roll or pound the lakeshore, continually grinding stone to sand.



The reach of each wave on the sandy shore leaves a mark of wet-on-dry.

The waves often leave an edge where grains sorted by the motion of the water are left in a line at the crest of each wave before it retreats back into the lake.


The waves repeatedly flow over the land and these minimalistic landscapes are shaped and reshaped on the sand.


Sometimes they are embellished with a rock or feather.





Sometimes it seems there is fog in the distance.



















...and sometimes the hills seem to stretch on forever.