Birch Grove Schoolhouse
Photo by Paul Haan

For a few minutes the sun broke through the overcast. It didn't last long but was nice to see for the time it was visible.

This is the 16th annual November GreatLakesHikes Gathering. The weekend before firearms deer season opens here in Michigan members of the GreatLakesHikes Yahoo email group and others gather at a former one-room schoolhouse near White Cloud, Michigan for a weekend of hiking, eating, chatting, and general good fun. This would be one of the smaller gatherings we have had but it was no less fun because of that.

The Gathering is an annual event that is organzied by members of the Great Lakes Hikes Yahoo email group. While the group isn't nearly as active as it used to be we still do use it to talk about hiking and other activities mostly within Michigan. Many of the GLH members are also members of the North Country Trail Association. The trails we typically hike when at the Gathering are maintained by the Western Michigan Chapter of which I am a member. If you enjoy hiking the NCT please do consider joining a trail chapter.

Here are the photos for the GLH Gathering.

Beaver Dam
We decided to do a shorter-than-usual hike compared to most of the long hikes of Gatherings of previous years. We hiked the North Country Trail from Condon Lake to Leaf Lake and at that point people made decisions about what to do. My group of 7 would continue along Leaf Lake before going off-trail to cross to the other side of the lake and return off-trail back towards Condon Lake and the NCT and either the cars parked there or further on to Highbanks Lake where the last of us (including me) would end our hike. The bushwhack would include a slog across an improvised jerry-built bridge of long branches and then a pause at this large beaver dam. Durning the afternoon wind whipped through the trees and it sprinkled on and off including a bit of sleet.
Ken on New Bridge
Photo By Paul Haan

At the end of September the Western Michigan chapter of the North Country Trail Association finished one of many trail projects. Here they built a bridge over this slow moving black as night water near the White River. It's a blustery afternoon sporting a temperature in the upper 30s. While the rain is north of us my rain jacket was nice to have to block the wind that got to us through the bare trees.
Direct download: GLH_Gathering_2014.mp3
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Photo 358

today July 11, 2014 was the 20th rolling sculpture car show here in Ann Arbor. I have not been to all of them by any means but I do try to go when I can. Even though I, naturally since I am legally blind, do not drive. There is something special about seeing a plethora of cars from a variety of decades. I think part of what makes car shows like this special is the chance to see how the styles of cars have changed over the years. It also gives us a chance to reflect back on how our society has changed over time after all the styles of the cars affect our society our society also fixed the styles of the car. 


Forgive any odd quirks in the text of this web post. I am using dictation to creatwe it as I broke two fingers of my left hand last weekend and typing therefore is impossible. Fortunately I didn't need to type to create this podcast audio.

Direct download: rolling_sculprure.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 11:25pm EDT


There is about one week left before the Ann Arbor Summer Festival closes its doors for 2014. Top of the Park is in full swing and I've been a few times already to this basically free outdoor music festival. Their is quite a variety of music to be heard as well as the regularly scheduled movies. I do hope you can get out and enjoy what remains of this special event that takes place every year.

Music heard in this podcast includes

More photos can be found in this Flickr Album.

Direct download: Top_of_the_Park.mp3
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