Headed out this morning to an area I thought would be about the easiest to get to, the Slate River. It was nice out there, nice and peaceful with not a soul around. I went down river to start with until I got to where there are a couple hunting camps, then back up across the road and followed the east side of the river. I rarely go up this side because you can’t get as far without really bushwhacking. I spent about 3 hours taking photos and just enjoying the river. I learned something else today… I need a fucking vehicle. First I barely made it up the first hill of Arvon Rd. Then as I drove down the road to the river I needed to turn around because there was no room to park without going into the few inches of snow. While turning around, I got stuck, stuck on flat fucking ground with only hard packed snow. So I got un-stuck and drove all the way back out to Arvon Rd and parked there. I guess it’s time to start hunting for a vehicle. I can’t live without being able to get out and about, it’s part of my life, and without it, I might as well cut my throat.
Yesterday I spent the day out and about with an old friend showing him a few waterfalls in the area. I haven’t seen him since living in Alaska when we had a small gathering at the house. He got in touch with me the other day say he was in Munising hitting some waterfalls in the area. Anyway, he picked me up around 9:00 AM and we headed out to Big Falls. I didn’t know if we would be about to make it there due to the high water level and having to ford part of the Huron River, but it was fine. We spent a couple hours there taking photos then headed back to explore some of the Slate River. Of course I’ve been to all these falls many times, he hadn’t and was trying to mark off some he hasn’t been to. After spending another few hours at the Slate River, it was time to head back and get something to eat. We had planned to get to a couple more falls, but ran out of time. We stopped at The Finns to eat, and I must say it’s quite a nice place. I’ve always wanted to stop in there, but just seem to drive by. The pizza was really quite good and probably the best I’ve had in the area so far. I’ll be getting more for take-out another day.
This not sleeping has got to end, and end soon. I’m so fucking tired. I’ve tried just about everything, but no matter what I do, I only sleep for about 3 hours. I get up, watch some TV, drink some coffee, take a shower, and then, and only then, I can take about an hour nap. Anyway… Yesterday was another rainy day making a 3 day rain total of 3.8″ of rain here at the house. Around 10:00 AM UPS came and the driver said that Houghton was starting to flood again, so knowing I needed to go to the dreaded Walmart, I headed out before the weather got any worse. Before even getting to the main road, I crossed over Menge Creek, and it was over flowing it’s banks, as was the next unnamed creek. I got to the main road, US-41, and the waves were crashing onto the road with logs and such right at the edge of the road. The drive all the way to Chassell was a slow one with heavy, heavy rain. Just past Chassell, there were police with their flashers on marking an area where water was flowing over the road and a front-end loader was pushing dirt and rocks off the road. About 2 miles further, the same thing. Once in Houghton it didn’t look too bad until I saw one of the downtown road that was just repaired a week ago starting to wash away, again. I did my shopping and headed for home. US-41 was getting worse in those same two spots with MDOT at the seen. The waves seemed to have calmed down a bit where they were crashing onto the road earlier. Thankfully the heavy rain didn’t start back up as was forecast, so things shouldn’t be too bad. One more thing… the pellet stove. I got a quote for 1 ton of hardwood pellets delivered for $235.85, that’s $4.00 per 40lb bag (50 total bags) plus delivery charge and tax. That seems pretty good to me and under the cost of what I’ve read. Something else I never thought of about using a pellet stove, they are worthless if the power goes out. The damn things need power in order to work. I found this out because later yesterday we lost power twice.
Update… I just ordered 2 tons of hard wood pellets. That’s 100 40# bags. They will be delivering it today at 2:00 PM. Pretty fast service. According to the stove manual, one 40# bag should last 24 hours burning at the middle setting (5). Now, that’s over 3 months worth of pellets burning 24/7. I have no plans to burn that much, and definitely not at night, so I think this could last me through most the winter, we shall see though.
Added a photo looking out toward the back of the property. The gazebo is in the center of a circle of birch trees.
Not sleeping! Again and again and again, I’m awake at about 1:30 AM and can’t get back to sleep. The only way I get more sleep is if I get up, drink some coffee, take a shower and then lay down for a nap. Today I’m back to work after taking last week off for the moving. I still have lots and lots of unpacking to do, and arranging of things. Looks like this week will be a good week to do everything indoors as the forecast is for rain, and heavy rain at that, through Wednesday. Taking last week off from work eat up some of my PTO that I need to use before I lose it at the end of the year. I still have 10 days to use, so if the weather clears up a bit by the end of the week, I might take Friday off to get some more photos of the Autumn colors. Here are a few of the photos I took yesterday.
Awake at 1:30 AM with sharp pains in my head. It feels like a long needle being pushed through my brain. Oh well, doesn’t really matter, it’s not like anyone gives a shit anyway. I saw on Facebook from NWS’s webcam the northern lights were out at about 12:30 AM, I went out and looked, nothing now. It’s suppose to be a really nice day today, what to do? Oh, that’s right, not a fucking thing. Maybe go for a drive, I don’t know, maybe just sleep.
Well I did end up going for a drive today, and discovered new areas/lakes. I drove out Pike Lake Rd., followed that and turned on each side road that went to a lake. Pike Lake Rd. comes starts at M-38 and meanders to M-26 near Twin Lakes State Park. Once on M-26, I just headed back up to Houghton and then to the camper. Fall colors are starting, but only in a few spots and areas. There was about 50-60% around Toivola, but most of the trip there was just spots here and there with color. Anyway, it was good to get out, even if it was just for a little while. I need to do it more, it helps me forget all the shit that’s going on. Following are photos from the drive.
I finally got out of the house to try and clear my head a bit today, it worked a little. I set out to find a path through an area that I’ve never explored, the southern side of Lake Gratiot. I took a trail just north of Gay that ran along the Big Betsy River and toward Lake Gratiot. There was a Y in the trail so I took the right/north turn, that ended after a couple miles at a Conservancy, Gratiot Lake Conservancy. Walked down a short trail to the lake, what a nice view. There was a box with maps of the area hiking trails, they looked quite nice, though I wasn’t really ready for that type of thing, but I will be back some day. So I headed back and took the left of the Y. I didn’t end up going where I thought I would due to so many logging roads in the area, but I did end up coming out onto Gratiot Lake Rd. From there I headed up to Copper Harbor and back south along the shore and then back home.
The shore line from Copper Harbor south has always had a big draw on me. Ever since I was a kid riding with my dad in his International Harvester Scout, I felt at home in the Keweenaw. No matter where I have lived in my life, the Keweenaw has always felt like home, where I belong. I stopped in a usual spot for me, walked around, took some photos, and cried.
Anyway, once I got back to the main road south out of Eagle Harbor on US-41, I hit road construction, and a lot of it. They were redoing the road all the way from Mohawk to the south side of Calumet, and a long wait for a section that was one lane. I felt like I was waiting there for ever.
It’s been over a month since I’ve been out to try and enjoy myself, and today I did, mostly anyway. I headed out Arvon Rd to Back Bear Rd and then on Peshekee Grade, knowing the end of Peshekee Grade is really crappy where it’s paved, but it’s still a nice drive. Along the way I stopped at Quartzite Falls, took a few photos and onward. Somewhere north of the Peshekee, I was driving along minding my own business, then started to notice my rear view mirrors getting dark, so I stopped. Got out to find I was being chased by a thunderstorm, and it was moving fast right at me.
Was good to get out, and it did some good to my head and soul, even if it was just a little bit.
Pretty sure this flood is a hundred year flood. The whole area is devastated. Roads are gone. homes are gone, and some of the homes have been here well over one hundred years. A state of emergency has been declared.
Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all. - Helen Keller
About Me - Ed Nephler
I live on Menge Creek, L'Anse, Michigan USA
Waiting for my last love to give me a sign.
I will wait the rest of my life. Truth.
It's sad when two hearts that ought to be together, aren't together.