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Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Quiet Backwater


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I really just needed some calm today, so Maggie and I walked down to my favorite spot on the Pere Marquette River. It's about a mile. The sun was warm (ahhh, finally), and I didn't wear the pack. We just walked and soaked in the quiet. When we reach the top of the bluff, the picture above is the view looking down to the river. Can you tell how steep it is? I don't think the picture does it justice. The hint of water you can see at the bottom is a braided backwater. The main course of the river is barely visible as a horizontal line about halfway up the gray area in the background.

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The river is very low. We need rain badly. But when I got to the bottom there was GREEN. Lovely, even though it's just grass.

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I sat for a while under this white cedar. I love the way the light and shadows play across the trunk. I heard a woodpecker, song sparrow, cardinal, and a fly! A turkey vulture circled low for a while. They are so large that it seemed as if there should have been sound... like maybe someone accidentally hit the mute button.

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Then I went exploring the lowlands, because I was pretty sure I would find some of these plants. Very common in the northeast US, but a sure sign of spring. It's the lowly skunk cabbage. I like this low-angle shot that really puts it in the boggy landscape. Then I wanted to get some closer pictures. And I did, but I also stepped in black mud up to one knee! This is a lot of pictures for one post, but I had such a nice walk!

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Hike Planning Report
Got all the correct menus in the food spreadsheet and started putting in the weights of the food that is done for this trip

Filled all 9 trays of the dehydrator: tuna, salmon, chicken, olives, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, and apples

Tried a new recipe for pineapple upside down cake. Since there are two people on this hike besides Marie and me I'm sticking to recipes we know work well, but I just had to try one new thing! It came out fine.

Meals completed (only one more- lots of portions, but soon it will all fall together):
     Rice Cakes, carrot raisin salad, tootsie rolls
     (all cold meals have peanut butter and cheese to go on the bread thing)

See Quiet River for more pictures of the Pere Marquette
See First Google Map for the route of this hike
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Joe Todd said...

Looks like the perfect spot for some quality time on a quality day
Joe Todd

rainfield61 said...

I can feel the calmness of the river, I like it. Sat under a cedar with this view must be very relaxing.

Rick (Ratty) said...

This is one of my favorite things to do. Ahh, quiet contemplation. I always think the camera can't show steepness very well. And I've never seen a skunk cabbage before. Maybe I need to get out more. :)

Sharkbytes said...

Hi Joe- I didn't stay very long. Seems like even the planning for a hike which will take me away from civilization pulls me away from the quiet places for now.

Rainfield- This place always relaxes me.

Ratty- Ha! You get out plenty... I think you haven't seen skunk cabbage because in E MI they try to keep you out of the swamps on boardwalks.