The Errie Fog at Loon Lake

Loch Loon

My friend Ben recently invited me to fish at Loon Lake in Lake County which is just a stone’s throw from Dave Norris’s favorite lake, that being Big Bass Lake. The two of us set out in early morning on a day when the fog was so thick I couldn’t even make Ben out in our boat if I hadn’t known it was him.

When I cast out my line it disappeared into that pea soup. Talk about an errie feeling and that fog lasted for nearly an hour before lifting. It reminded me of the lakes, or loch’s, of Scotland. Ben was just a hazy siloutte just a few feet away in our boat.

I can’t ever remember fishing in a fog so thick before. If there were other fishermen out there the odds of running into them literally would have been great. When I got home later that afternoon, my wife made me some pea soup to which I let out a huge belly laugh saying, “Ive already had that today, my love“. I ate it anyway to keep peace in the family.

Boys Club Learning Center

the Mishawaka Boys Club in Arizona had a great Learning Center complete with many computers. The key thing here was these computers had very few computer games. They did have Microsoft Word and they taught the boys how to compose stories and also how to use computer for later in life. The club also had a variety of quiz Bow The club also had a variety of quiz bowls and spelling bees. The Torch Club met weekly in the Learning Center. Boys ages 11 to 13 were eligible to join. It was a junior Leaders Club. Finally this room had guest speakers from the community on a variety of topics. Every night had a specific program. The kids have fun at this Boys Club and also learned a lot.

New Bridge over Sauble River

Well, there’s a new foot bridge over Sauble River near the Hamlin Dam. I kind of like this new one as I am a tad sqeamish going over th one actually over that dam. As I said in an earlier post, I “was” at one time fearful of that Hamlin Dam narrow bridge but later conquered that fear. Still, having this bridge, slightly downstream, makes me feel even better crossing over to that other side.

This bridge is between the Hamlin Dam bridge and the M -116 bridge over Sauble River. It provides one with a good look at the Hamlin Dam itself. It makes me not desire to walk over that actual Hamlin Dam bridge of troubled waters just below.

I wonder who came up with that novel idea?

Ludington Marina

It won’t be too long before the ghost town mentality of the Ludington Marina, now hauntily empty with ice replacing boats, will be full of activity again. Warm weather is just around the corner and then dock by dock will be occupied with boats.

Be they for fishing or for pleasure trips will again be taken onto Lake Michigan for another summer’s activites. Dodging the ferry boats that also occupy the harbor, those pleasure boats will yield the right of way to their larger cousins enroute to the big lake.

Always take caution, though, and check with the Coast Guard to determine the condtions on Lake Michigan lest your pleasure cruise turn into a nightmare. As for now, get out those icebreakers and start chipping away!

Lake Michigan Ice Shelf

Here is a typical Lake Michigan ice shelf in the dead of winter. However, unlike most inland lakes, I would not trust this particular ice shelf too much in regard to walking out onto it. Lake Michigan is different than other lakes in that it gets winter storms that still manage to churn up the seas which creates ice holes within the shelf that shoot up tremendous volumes of water.

It is akin to water hitting a breakwater only in an ice shelf it shoots up much like a geyser such as Old Faithful would. In those areas of the ice shelf, the ice itself is very loose and unstable yet still appears safe to walk upon by the naked eye.

The only ice I feel safe enough to walk on at Lake Michigan is within a few feet of shore. The lake is cold enough in the summer and I can tell you by personal testimony it is even colder in winter. Once a year my polarbear club takes a dip into Lake Michigan, albeit a rather short one. But falling through a hole in the lake with full clothes on doesn’t take much imagination as to how long one might last, especially without help.

I always treat the ice shelfs of Lake Michigan with great respect and enjoy what I can observe with my eyes while allowing my feet to stay on the safe dry land. Or at least as dry as you can get the land in the middle of winter on the shores of Lake Michigan.

Lake Michigan Winter Dunes On M-116

I don’t think you’ll be needing your sun tan lotion today. How foreboding the dunes now look along Michigan 116 between Ludington and the Hamlin Dam. That seven mile stretch of highway is alongside Lake Michigan all the way to the dam. In the summer, almost any spot is great to park at and have your own private beach literally.

Today, though, the wind would be biting and even sand kicks up in your face. Eyes water easily and can almost freeze over along this shoreline. I know because when there isn’t snow on the ground, I jog this area even in the winter. In high winds stinging sand provides a whole new meaning. Between the highway and the lake stands only a singular sand dune all the way to the dam. This is the view from one of those dunes along the way.

Yes, it’s a beautiful vista albeit a cold one. And a cold one is the last thing on my mind right now. Instead a mug of hot chocolate comes to mind.

Perilous Walk

it was a cold and bitter day and I had vowed to walk the break water at least 100 yards out. My friend Daniel and I were cautious and wearing rubber boots to protect our feet. Water was already sloshing around our feet. The lake looked angry as only Lake Michigan can get. We finally made it to the hundred-yard point and headed back
Already the wind had increased its volume and the way his room breaking harder. 100 yards from Shore might not seem like much but when you’re on the Breakwater on this kind of went it sure seems that long. By the time we made it back to shore the waves were breaking over the Breakwater mightily. We had timed our adventure just right. Daniel looked at me and I looked at him and we both knew we would never do this again.

Dr. Smith and a Bubble-Headed Booby

 do you remember the television series Lost in Space? There was a character called Dr. Smith who referred to the robot as a bubble-headed booby. Apparently we have another bubble headed booby.  These new devices appear difficult to control. I must confess they look rather fun but I don’t think I’d want to be in one. I saw two or three of these in the same area and they kept bouncing off each other and it was rather hilarious. I wonder what they’ll come up with next?

Ludington Ferry Boats


Ludington, Michigan, has many attractions, chief among them the beaches on Lake Michigan, but a great many people come to Ludington, literally, on its chief attraction and that is via the Ferry Boats. These large car carrying boats travel across Lake Michigan to Wisconsin depositing tourists during the summer months. I myself have made one voyage on one of those boats.

The painstaking part of the journey is boarding the boat with your vehicle which is quite time consuming both in regard to boarding and departure. Once that process is removed from the equation the rest is just pure enjoyment. The views are spectacular to say the least. Though not quite up to the expectation of a Cruise Ship atop the seven seas, Lake Michigan does have its benefits too. Some will say water is water but I prefer the Great Lakes to an ocean voyage.

One, though, doesn’t have to board the ships to admire them as that can be done from shore as you notice those large ships quite small on the horizen though getting bigger and bigger as they approach port. If you want an even closer examination of these ferry boats, walk out on the Ludington breakwater and you can observe them quite close up as they enter the channel. At those times they seem quite monsterous especially so if they appear out of a morning fog.

I will have more to say on Ludington as our travels progress.

The Catwalk Bridge over Hamlin Dam

From my earliest days in the greater Ludington area this bridge has always terrified me. Only recently have I got over that terror. When I was eleven, I remember crossing it with my parents at a time the river was quite high and the narrow walkway made me quite dizzy and I almost went over the side.

As I got older, I usually only went across the dam when the river was somewhat low or made an excuse about not wanting to to go to the sand dunes on the other side. After all there were miles of sand dunes just off the seven mile stretch of M-116 from Ludington the the Hamlin Dam Park and those dunes didn’t require a walk over a narrow catwalk.

As you progress across that catwalk you can literally see thousands of gallons pouring over the side directly beneath your feet. I always thouht they could have made that venue a little wider. My wife, Darlene, has helped me to see that my childhood memories shouldn’t affect me that same way today so now I can go across this narrow catwalk with little trouble. I can enjoy the huge sand dune on the other side more frequently now. Strange how child phobia’s can still affect people even into their adult lives.

Snowy Road

now that I live in Arizona I don’t miss the snowy roads in winter time that Michigan is so famous for. This is the road that led to our house and sometimes it proved difficult especially on days like this. My former Huskies loved the winter in Michigan. Even I didn’t mind at all that much as it gave my snowmobile something to do. And in Michigan, we still get snow in March. We even get snow in April and sometimes May. But you have to say one thing for a snow like this. It sure makes one beautiful scene and one perfect for a Christmas card.