I want to write this while I still have the passion in my belly. Let me begin by saying that we did not end up where we intended to. Nor does it look like we will be doing what we had planned for the weekend.
With a last minute change of plans we decided to find a site close to the Chippewa River so we could go kayaking on the Chippewa River on Saturday. So last night after work we packed up the kayaks, hitched up the RV and headed for the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe Campground. My wife had made several attempts to make a reservation at this place only to get an answering machine that told her to leave a message and they would call back. You guessed it, they never did.
We arrived at the campground to find the office door locked and nobody around. I saw a white truck with a campground sign on it and flagged the guy down. I had to leap out of the way as he nearly ran me over turning into me as I was waving to him. Then the guy informed us that there was no room for us here. He said that it was the weekend of the Annual Saginaw Chippewa Pow Wow.
NOTE: As I am writing this I checked the campground website and it says that the 26th Annual Saginaw Chippewa Pow Wow is actually on August 6-8, 2010. That happens to be not until next weekend. You would think this guy would have known that. After all it has been going on for 26 years.
Most people at this point would probably just high-tail it back home. But not hard core campers like us. We continued up the road to Pettit Park located 20 miles north in Clare, Michigan. This is a favorite backup spot for us.
For dinner we went downtown to a place called the Doherty Hotel. By the prices on the menu we figured that it was a finer place to eat. We both had the salad bar and I also ordered their Famous Reuben sandwich. The food seemed good at the time but, now is where I start my belly aching. Shortly after we ate my wife and I started feeling VERY sick. I swear it always has to do with the salad. I still feel a bit queasy today.
As for the kayaks, I still hope to get them off the roof sometime before we head home tomorrow but on top of everything else it has been raining since we arrived at our site. The next post will tell you if that happened or not.
We are camping this weekend at Gladwin City Park and Campground. When we pulled into the park we found only 3 available sites. The first spot was barely big enough to pitch a pup tent on. Luckily enough the other two sites were actually quite large when compared to the others at this park. There is an upper and lower section. The upper is less level. The sites offer water and electric. The electrical service is only 20 amps.
After we setup camp, we headed over to the Riverwalk Grill which is located inside of the Riverwalk Place. We were seated at a table overlooking the Riverwalk. The grounds are nicely landscaped and from our seat we could watch people floating down the Cedar River. For dinner we enjoyed a couple of very good sandwiches. My wife had the “Philly Roast Beef Sandwich” and I enjoyed the “Riverwalk Reuben”. Both came with homemade chips. This is a very good place to grab a bite to eat while in Gladwin.
The park has partnered with Gladwin Boat Rental which offers canoe, kayak and tubing right from the park. The Cedar River flows right through the campground. The river is fairly shallow and only about 20 feet wide. The current is quite swift.
We did not bring our kayaks this trip. The Cedar River looks like a nice ride. We will be returning sometime soon to give it a try.
Have we finally gotten to the point where we are letting computers tell us all where we can go? I do have to admit that when it comes to mapping out a RV road trip, there isn’t a handier gadget than a GPS Device. Gone are the days of laying maps out on the hood of our cars and stopping at gas stations for directions only to forget if the guy at the station told us to turn right or left at the red house with the little white picket fence in the front yard.
The GPS Device has changed the way we travel. You may, however, want to take the machine’s advice with a grain of salt. They have been known to outright lie. We once ended up on a small winding dirt road towing our 5th wheel through the hills of Vermont because the GPS told us it was the way to go. I think these little map-in-a-box devices get some sort of thrill getting us to drive down roads that we would otherwise never go down on our own.
My wife and I usually map out our trip in advance using a software program like Microsoft Streets and Trips. This allows us to map out where we travel on each leg of our journey and how long we will be staying at each site. From this we can create a traveling timeline of places. The software also gives us an idea of the fuel costs, road construction and times of the day we may be traveling though large towns with heavy traffic.
As we are traveling we put the points we are heading to into our GPS unit. The GPS shows us turn by turn how to get to our destination. We can also find gas, food and rest stops along the way. With our unit we can also find campground information. This allows us to pull over for the night when we find an unscheduled area where we would like to stay.
Love ‘em or leave ‘em, GPS is here to stay. I could never go back to unfolding a street map again.I certainly don’t know anyone who can fold those maps back up the way they were when they were purchased anyway.
Article Courtesy of : www.BugSmacker.com : Copyright © 2010
Good thing we decided to stop at Outdoor Adventures on the way home from the State Park because the traffic on I-75 was literally stopped. We tried to get gas just before the exit onto the expressway only to find the station had none. When we got to the ramp we noticed that the traffic was horrible. We found a way around it and made our way to the park.
Even though the expressway was like a parking lot, it is good to see people camping again. The last few years here in Michigan have been quite slow.
Tagged with: campsites
Posted in Adventures
Two years ago I canoed down Thunder Bay River for the first time, so I was excited to return and give it a try with my kayak. We started out at the Thunder Bay Canoe & Kayak Livery in Atlanta, Michigan. This time around we arrived with 11 other people. The group consisted of Jason, Becky, Gary, Ted, Dani, Ashley, Sam, Jerry, Ellen, Terri and I. In all we had 7 kayaks and 2 canoes.
The Thunder Bay River was quite narrow and shallow in most spots along the way. Because we launched from a livery, the river was clear of any obstacles. It was the 4th of July weekend so the river was quite busy. I was even attacked by a couple of water cannons thanks to my brother-in-law, Jerry.
The last half hour or so of our trip the river became extremely shallow and rocky. We arrived at the Eichorn Bridge about 3 hours later. This area only has road side parking.
Tagged with: family
Posted in Kayaking