My new fur piece by Bob Hamilton


I thought of getting my girlfriend a fur piece but  opted  for one myself  instead. It was a stroke of Genius . To catch a Bigfoot  why not dress like a Bigfoot ? I don’t know why I haven’t thought of this before ? Think like your prey ! I must admit though  in the summertime wearing a fur piece can  be quiet hot . Now I know how a barbecue hot dog feels. After about an hour  I thought about  what might happen if I actually met a Bigfoot . What if it  came onto me? How could I explain that to my girlfriend ? Maybe this wasn’t such a good idea after all ? Worse still  what if a hunter  took a shot at me ? My head might wind up in his den . In retrospect  maybe I should have bought this fur piece  for my girlfriend after all ?396afc0ab71b6cafa7149688277cdcc4

The Wolf on the road


I own two Huskies by the name of Fric and Frac. Thus the subject of wolves has always interested me . A singular wolf is often not dangerous. Packs of wolves are dangerous. When Darlene and I were in Canada we saw several packs of wolves at a distance . And it is true  that every dog  has a little wolf in them. A dog’s natural hunting instinct comes from that . When I snapped this wolfs picture I also remember my two Huskies . How easily they could have been  in the wild.  Yet Huskies  are also very affectionate. That sets them apart from wolves. A wolf is seen walking on a gravel road in this undated Oregon Fish & Wildlife handout photo

Dock to nowhere


IMG_20171015_215352 a good friend asked me to fish on his lake with him somewhere in the Manistee National Forest. It was one of the funniest days I can ever recall. When we got to his pier, it was pea soup two feet off his dock. I heard a motor boat not far off our Pier but I couldn’t see the boat, I only heard it. When we casted our lines into the Lake they disappeared as well. I believe we had entered the Twilight Zone. In fact I don’t think the fish could even see us either. What a day to go fishing! 

Woodland signs


gps-wrong1 my wife Darlene recently had posts about funny cereal boxes. But I found some about funny signs in the forest. I love this one about GPS. Some people can use this while hiking so as not to get lost. I have one friend that can use a GPS whenever he goes hiking.  If my friend  Had a GPS he wouldn’t  get stranded  and die. What great signs!53a8ea673a9d20c58ac15f3d95b071d8

How to climb a tree


The first thing you have to know in how to climb a tree is to dig your claws into that tree . Of course you have to be a bear to do that. And I think we interrupted Mama Bear  in teaching her Cubs  how to climb a tree. In fact she looks a little flabbergasted by being caught unawares. What she uses as a back scratcher  her Cubs will use for protection. After all mother bears do know quite a bit.27eab370e223aab7255a9f6f0e4cfa80

The Rock tripe plant


IMG_20170921_064524 when I was a forest ranger I learned about survival. One never knows when they will be caught up being lost
Nature’s supermarket provides the answer
to survivalsurvival. The best place to look for food are actually swamps
Have you ever heard of the rock tripe plant? You can largely find them grown on rocks. when you gather them up you must put them in water and boil them. This process must be repeated over and over again. The Rock tripe plant tastes like the white of an egg. It is somewhat starchy and chewy. So next time you’re lost look for some rocks and enjoy supper

Canoeing the Pere Marquette


I know of some folks that believe that they can get from the Baldwin, Michigan, area to Lake Michigan in no time flat along the Pere Marquette River, that is, as the crow flies. But crows don’t paddle all the twists and turns of that river so to go that distance in just a few days is not a reality.  One man, in particular, only made it about half way in the time limit that he had alloted for himself, much to his displeasure.

I’ve never taken the Pere Marquette River in any sort of speed contest as that would ruin it for me.  This river was meant to be enjoyed and part of that pleasure is to camp along its banks and get in some good fishing.  If you’re in some sort of speed contest, you’ll miss all that this river offers you.  I even enjoy a brief swim in the cool waters of the Pere Marquette. 

This river was meant to be enjoyed to its fullest and each and every time that I dip my paddle in this river, I take my time to enjoy every minute.  What’s the rush?

Disc Golf


My good friend Dave Norris would be thrilled to learn that now the Manistee National Forest even has Disc Golf Courses!  I think he refers to them as Frisbee Golf Courses since Indiana is not quite up to par with the term Disc Golf yet.  Maybe they’ll catch the “birdie” on this one sooner than later.  It took o’le eagle eyes Michael (my hubbie) to spot this course.

Disc Golf has eighteen holes that are found in metal baskets and they are sprinkled throughout this portion of the national forest.  Mike and I play whenever possible but I usually come out with the victory.  He handles a frisbee like I handle a fishing rod.  I don’t think it prudent to play this course at night for one might encounter the “bogie” man.  Ouch!  My humor is starting to get like David’s. 

The Marion YMCA Bus Ride


Do you remember the Lucille Ball movie, “The Long, Long Trailer”?  Well, on a trip to our property in Michigan from the Marion YMCA we had an old bus to get us there and the trip took a long, LONG time!  It seemed that the top speed of that bus was between 45 and 50 miles an hour in speed zones of 65.  And, for that entire trip we only passed one vehicle and then we did so by going over a railroad track without first stopping and opening our doors.  We were halfway around that person before realizing the tracks were just ahead of us.

 Some of the boys joked that the guy we passed was probably some Amish farmer with a literal two horse engine!  Our bus driver made several stops for bathroom breaks, lunch, and for fuel.  The trip of 360 miles took nearly eleven hours to get us there so since we left at 8 am we didn’t arrive until 7pm leaving us little time to set up the tents and get our camp site in readiness before nightfall.

 Along the way we sang songs, played alphabet games with road signs, snoozed, or just enjoyed the scenery.  However the scenery was just likeIndianauntil we passed Grand Rapids, Michigan, and got onto Michigan 37 for the final eighty miles of our journey and that was all through the Manistee National Forest.  At the time the kids were riveted at just how big that forest actually was as they marveled at passing lakes and streams.

The bus really went slowly up a big hill just outside Baldwin, Michigan, and then the kids looked behind them for a glance at a long dirt road snaking through the forest behind them as if they could see for miles.  Finally just past the Club 37 restaurant we left Michigan 37 and proceeded for the last twelve miles down back roads to Big Bass Lake.  The kids were amazed that we were still in that same forest and for the next ten days, that forest was to be their home. 

We stopped a mile short of our goal at the Big Bass Lake store to get some last minute snack food before proceeding to our property.  But, what a long, LONG trip that had been only to be rewarded with some hard work setting up camp before bedtime.  The fun part of that trip was to commence the next morning.  That long, LONG day was finally about to end.