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Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Day Ten - Midland to Mackinac

You are going to start thinking that when I lose the blazes, I don't look very hard because I just enjoy bushwhacking so much that I want to do it yet again.

I hiked for exactly 20 minutes with blazes and lost them at the beaver flooding of East Creek. I was particularly dismayed, because even if I could get across the creek I could potentially have to bushwhack for two miles to hit a road.

Northward I went via compass (no sun). Actually managed to cross the creek on a beaver dam. See the humpy thing heading out into the water on the right? That. The picture is actually looking back south. I forgot to take a pic on the other side.

beaver dam

The bushwhacking wasn't too difficult, but of course, one never knows what is ahead. That's the stressful part when alone. I really have to make it back to my car. Preferably on the same day.

open woods

Found this really interesting fungus. It might be Hen of the Woods, but I'm not positive.


Bushwhacked for 35 minutes and came upon a two-track going north. Took it! Five paces later... blue blaze!!!!

two track with blue blaze

This blaze was astonished to see me again. "You never give up, do you?" it said.

blue blaze with eyes

Just before one o'clock I reached a major milestone. This actually makes me feel as if I'm getting somewhere. I left State Forests and entered the Huron National Forest.

Huron National Forest sign

Wow! The next two-plus miles of trail I can actually recommend. There was interesting terrain (one little puddle of hills there), there was established treadway, there were consistent and correct blazes. I would actually call those miles pleasant!

Got to my destination and ate lunch. It doesn't look like tomorrow's trail is as good. Sigh. I guess someone just loves those two miles.

I decided to walk back on Meridian Road. I should have checked to make sure you could get through on it before I started hiking. The maps look like it goes through, but I know from my experience yesterday that there is at least one piece of it missing. But I figured I'd go as far as I could before cutting back to the trail. What I didn't really want to do was try to bushwhack back through that same section with the creek because of the uncertainty of finding a place to cross East Creek. Kind of unlikely I'd find the same beaver dam.

Anyway, I'm walking along and although, unlike Lucy, I did know where I was, this felt Narnian. There are almost no road signs at the corners of these sand roads. And yet... here I am... Meridian and County Line.

Meridian and County Line Road sign

Meridian continued for another mile. So far so good. A hunter in his truck was coming up Meridian. I stopped him and asked if the road goes through. He said it did. I showed him on the map where my car was. He said, "I saw it. A little Subaru, right?"

So now, I was feeling happy. Just 2.5 miles to the car and no more bushwhacking required for the day. Crossed East Creek on the road. It's really very pretty. I especially liked these hummocks of grass with water shield around them.

hummocks of grass in wetland

Progress on the trail for the day, about 5.5 miles. Total for the trip 75.5 miles. Total miles walked today, about 12.

Got new pants at the thrift store this morning, so I have more confidence that I will return in the afternoon fully clothed. Also, I wore the Gumby II jacket until mid-afternoon. The day was damp and chilly, and the jacket was great.

See Day Nine
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1 comment:

Ann said...

This sounds like one of the best days you've had so far.

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