Went out today to my favorite spot at the bend where the Grand Staircase Falls on the Slate River turns. I shot entirely with in-camera black & white. I’ve been wanting to work on my BW photos for quite some time, so I thought this would be a good way to get a jump on it. After being there for quite a while enjoying it, I took off to see what roads might be open/plowed. I mostly ran into dead ends, but it was still nice being out in the woods a bit. At the end of one of the roads was a driveway to a hunting camp with a sign that read “Camp Left Nut”, I thought it was pretty funny so I took a photo of it. After that I headed home but first a car wash.
On my way into Houghton for shopping this morning, I decided to take a little detour. I drove down Sturgeon River Road just be for Chassell. Interesting road and area, it runs along the river and at times very very close, but what’s really interesting is the farms and old settlements. There’s some history back on this road that I need to find more about. At the very end of the road is an old settlement with a very large cordwood barn. Very cool!
Nope, not much happening today, mostly watching the snow fall. I’ve also dug into more of my bags of clothes in search for my comfy t-shirts. I found them and they are being washed. Also, hunted / looked for cars / SUVs online, and I’ve found a couple. I need to contact the bank for a loan first to see what they can do for me. I know what kind of payments I can do, so it’s mostly up to the interest rate to see what the amount can be.
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.