After about ten days of camping most of the boys from the Hoffman Estates Boys Club were ready o return home. After a good breakfast we began the task of taking camp down. Tents had to be dismantled and all the boys personal property taken back up to my station wagon. A few of the boys took down the commode and tarp covering it while others went with me to take our tent up to my grandmother’s granary for storage until next year.
Then as we hiked back to our wooded beachfront to see if we had forgotten anything the memories of that trip started to flood the boys minds. Some wondered if they would ever be coming this way again. One asked if we could stay another day. It was starting to sink into each boy that this particular life experience was over.
It was ever so quiet as my car left our property and sped toward the Big Bass Lake store. Upon passing that we skirted the length of Loon Lake and soon thereafter Sauble Lake. Then as we turned south onto M-37 the boys started to talk again about things like Lake Michigan and the Bloody Antler Trail. They laughed at how brave they had all been at the Haunted Island. Then it was quiet again until we reached the White Cloud refreshment station.
The kids used the restroom and then fixed their eyes on the last they would see of the Manistee National Forest perhaps forever. And then as we drove through Grand Rapids talk returned to things regarding home and what would be happening at the boys club the next week. But the boys would never forget their time at Big Bass Lake and the fun they had there.