The 1,000-Mile Great Lakes Adventures

Friday, August 18, 2017

Great Lakes Speaker

Loreen Niewenhuis is an author, adventurer, and Great Lakes speaker. She has completed a trilogy of 1,000-mile adventures exploring the Great Lakes and has written three books about the Great Lakes [A 1,000-Mile Walk on the Beach *a Heartland Indie Bestseller*A 1,000-Mile Great Lakes Walk *winner of the Great Lakes Great Reads Award*, and A 1,000-Mile Great Lakes Island Adventure]. To learn more about her work, or to book her as a speaker, go to http://LakeTrek.com



I had a busy week crisscrossing the state of Michigan, giving presentations about my 
Great Lakes Adventures.
The week began in St. Helen, Michigan, where I gave the presentation about my first 1,000-mile hike around Lake Michigan.  


Driving to St. Helen, MI


Richfield Township Library in St. Helen, MI


Then, I headed downstate to Birmingham to the lovely All Seasons community where I gave my
Islands of the Great Lakes presentation. 


All Seasons of Birmingham



All Seasons entry

 On Friday, I had two events. First, I spoke to seniors in Beverly, MI, giving my 
Our Majestic Great Lakes talk.
Then, as I was on my way to the final event of the week (in Marshall, MI), I realized that I would be giving my fourth presentation on 
Isle Royale, Wilderness Island.





Garden and statue outside the Marshall Public Library

That's when I realized that in one week, I was going to deliver all four of my presentations!


Audience at Marshall Public Library

Learn more about my presentations and how to engage me as a speaker HERE.
I am currently booking events for the fall/winter of this year and have started to book events for 2018.

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Small Life on Isle Royale

Loreen Niewenhuis is an author, adventurer, and Great Lakes speaker. She has completed a trilogy of 1,000-mile adventures exploring the Great Lakes and has written three books about the Great Lakes [A 1,000-Mile Walk on the Beach *a Heartland Indie Bestseller*A 1,000-Mile Great Lakes Walk *winner of the Great Lakes Great Reads Award*, and A 1,000-Mile Great Lakes Island Adventure]. To learn more about her work, or to book her as a speaker, go to http://LakeTrek.com


Isle Royale is surrounded by Lake Superior. It is a rocky, harsh environment, but life finds a way to flourish here, especially in miniature.
Enjoy these close-ups of tiny life on this wilderness island.






Vibrant algae/fungus in this fallen stick





Slime mold


Yellow lichen

Over 700 types of lichen thrive on Isle Royale.
This vibrant, purple lichen (below) grows on a rock wall on the shores of Lake Superior.



Sunday, August 6, 2017

Hiawatha Club

Loreen Niewenhuis is an author, adventurer, and Great Lakes speaker. She has completed a trilogy of 1,000-mile adventures exploring the Great Lakes and has written three books about the Great Lakes [A 1,000-Mile Walk on the Beach *a Heartland Indie Bestseller*A 1,000-Mile Great Lakes Walk winner "Great Lakes Great Reads Award*, and A 1,000-Mile Great Lakes Island Adventure long-listed for the Chatauqua Prize]. 

To learn more about her work, or to book her as a speaker, please go to http://LakeTrek.com


Last month I had the pleasure of speaking at the Hiawatha Sportsman's Club
in Michigan's Upper Peninsula.





The club has existed for 90 years and encompasses over 36,000 acres 
including 6 miles of Lake Michigan shoreline.



Manitou Lodge Museum


I spoke in the Manitou Lodge Museum which is perched on a hill overlooking Lake Michigan.



The museum chronicles the foundation of the club by Dr. William McNamara and the natural history of this land.





The land was stripped of trees in the early 1900s





A wonderful audience awaits my presentation on the islands of our Great Lakes


Sunday, July 16, 2017

Great Lakes Sand Pirate

I've met many fascinating people on my 
adventures exploring our Great Lakes: people living on the edge of these waters, fishermen working on the surface, scientists delving into the depths to learn about these vast inland seas, and many, many more.

Janet Moore Schrader and I bonded over our mutual connection to Lake Michigan. We both clam it as our "favorite place." 
I walked all the way around the lake in 2009, and Janet has been walking her portion of the shoreline in southwest Michigan virtually every day for over a decade. On those beach strolls, Janet has collected beach glass, crinoids (fossilized ancient sea creatures), Petoskey stones and chain corals (fossilized ancient corals), and other interesting beach finds.

Janet Moore Schrader with a string of crinoids she found in a single year

She also developed a love of sand sculpting and learned all she could about the art. And she began giving classes on sand sculpting as a 
self-proclaimed "Sand Pirate."


Janet has now opened a store to meet the growing demand for sand sculpting classes and beach-related crafts.


"Sand Pirate" store at 9792 Red Arrow Highway in Bridgman, Michigan

Janet is a master sand sculptor. She gives classes at her new store, or by appointment on the beach. She gave me a mini-class about sculpting sand:


video



The store's sandbox





Her sand creations on the beach go beyond the classic sand castles. She's sculpted dragons with smoking nostrils, mermaids, octopi, and other watery creatures. 

Her shop has room for large groups to do beach crafts under her direction


Sand and stone art projects

Sea glass art


Learn more about Janet and her new store HERE. 

Janet even coated her desk with SAND! 



Wednesday, July 12, 2017

A Tree's Life on Isle Royale

Loreen Niewenhuis is an author, adventurer, and Great Lakes speaker. She has completed a trilogy of 1,000-mile adventures exploring the Great Lakes and has written three books about the Great Lakes [A 1,000-Mile Walk on the Beach *a Heartland Indie Bestseller*A 1,000-Mile Great Lakes Walk *winner of the Great Lakes Great Reads Award*, and A 1,000-Mile Great Lakes Island Adventure]. To learn more about her work, or to book her as a speaker, go to http://LakeTrek.com



Isle Royale is an island in wild Lake Superior. The terrain is rugged and rocky. 
The winters are brutal and snowy, icy and windy.

All of this makes for a harsh environment. There is evidence on the island of the struggle of trees.



Scrabble of roots inside a tree trunk


Me (left) and fellow Moosewatch hiker, Jenny (right) by fallen tree



Roots


And there are beavers to contend with...


Beavers decrease the tree population


And lightening takes a toll:



Tree struck by lightening


Close up of tree struck by lightening



Here are some other shots of trees on this wild island: