Hike, Bike/Walk

April 14, 2017.  After two weeks of house/kitty sitting, I needed my ‘nature fix’ so we immediately headed out to Reid Lake, one of my favorite places, for a day hike. The weather was chilly, but since I still have all of my winter clothes out, donning many layers was easy. After all, it’s April in Michigan and we never know what kind of weather Mother Nature is going to throw at us!

KODAK Digital Still Camera

On previous spring hikes, I remembered seeing some daffodils just before getting to the lake, and I was earnestly searching for them when we spotted some clumps of lavender and dark purple crocus. It’s the first I’ve seen them out here, and I was very glad to spot them. Upon seeing the crocus, I knew the daffodils wouldn’t be blooming yet, but after some searching, we spotted their leaves poking up through the leaf litter. Maybe I’ll make it back out here to see them this year.

Further down the trail, we spotted some Round lobed Hepatica just off the trail and these little beauties also brought a smile to my face. They are like little jewels amongst a drab, brown/grey environment.

KODAK Digital Still Camera

We brought two seed bells with us to hang for the spring birds who are returning and might need some quick energy. We found nice secluded areas to hang them and will return later to remove the netting.

KODAK Digital Still Camera

While eating lunch on a downed tree, we kept getting circled by a pair of Red Shouldered Hawks and we thought they wanted our jerky or nuts. But then we spotted the hawk’s nest not far from us.   I assured the hawks that we will not invade their home, but I think they were not having any of it.

KODAK Digital Still Camera

While rounding Big Marsh, I noticed some turtles sunning themselves on a log, I could only imagine how cold that water was, I think I’d want to get out of it also!

It was great to get my ‘nature fix’ on such a beautiful day!

April 18, 2017.  A few days after the hike, we decided to do a portion of the North Eastern State Trail, Posen to Hawks.  We thought for sure the path wouldn’t be muddy, after all, it’s pretty dry here.  Right???  It was another sunny day, chilly, and unfortunately a little windier than we like, but we set out anyway.

I’ve never biked with three layers of clothes on, heavy winter mittens, and a knit hat over my visor, but I’m always up for an adventure.  Not far down the trail we encountered two red fox, separately, but not far apart.  Being the sly fox they are, they did not stop and pose for a photo op, but they were beautiful nonetheless.  We were surprised to see them since we have so few due to the high coyote population.  Again, I spotted some painted turtles sunning themselves.  I felt bad when we rode by and they slipped into the freezing water, they probably had some choice words for us!

KODAK Digital Still Camera

While the trail was in good shape, we did encounter some areas that were very mushy, and it felt like riding a bike on beach sand, peddling like crazy, but not getting anywhere!  We ended up walking them through the worst of it, thankfully it wasn’t too long of a stretch.

A short ways up the trail, we spotted a couple of eagles being harassed by some crows, and then we spotted their nest.  It is huge!  I was surprised the smallish tree could support it and that it was as close to the farm as it was.

KODAK Digital Still Camera

We had planned on going to Hawks and then returning to Posen, but when we encountered the mud/soft trail and the wind ‘freshening’ up, we decided to stop in Metz, eat our lunch, and then return to Posen.  We had never been to Metz, so we didn’t know what to expect and we were pleasantly surprised at the brand new (2016) trailside park that was there.  It is considered a historic park commemorating the great fire of 1908. Very interesting place.  KODAK Digital Still Camera

After a nice break, we peddled the 5 miles back to Posen against a very ‘fresh’ headwind, which slowed us a bit and ensured I received a good workout.  Again, another wonderful day to be outside!

Peace,

Sheri

Posted in Nature, Photographs | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Spring ‘Retreat’

I have two more days left of my Spring ‘Retreat’ here in Harrisville.  When I arrived, Lake Huron was very angry and noisy, almost to the point of deafening.  But thankfully the weather improved and the lake calmed down.

KODAK Digital Still CameraKODAK Digital Still Camera

I call this a ‘retreat’ but I am actually house/kitty sitting for a friend while she is in Colorado.  I’ve been doing this for almost five years and I really enjoy coming over here and since losing BooBoo, I have a chance to spend time with some wonderful kitties.  Lucy is the grey one and Lacey is the multi-colored one.

KODAK Digital Still CameraKODAK Digital Still Camera

I have done a lot of beach walking and glass hunting when the weather and lake conditions permit.  I have found a lot of ‘treasures’ and even some ‘cute junk’.  It’s been quite cool here, but today is very warm, almost 70 deg.  With the warm spring air comes the spring thunderstoms, and one has already gone through, and there are more on the way for this afternoon and evening.

The spring crocus have started blooming and I absolutely love them.  They are one of the first spring flowers to brighten the otherwise drab brown ground.

KODAK Digital Still CameraKODAK Digital Still Camera

I will be heading home on Wednesday and then starts the spring clean-up and prepping of the garden and flower beds.  I think winter may be finally over (I say that very softly so that Mother Nature won’t hear, and decide to drop another snowstorm on us!)

Peace,

Sheri

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Aurora, The Roman Goddess of the Dawn

KODAK Digital Still CameraI left off with Aurora’s progress and I wanted to show how she turned out.  Pretty good I think.

This was taken last summer, as you can see by the garden in full swing!

I did have to make an adjustment to her this spring.  We had some very high winds and her skirt didn’t fare too well.  So I had to remove it and reconfigure it to a tighter fit so the wind is unable to damage it.  I don’t yet have a picture, but will soon.

Peace,

Sheri

 

 

 

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Introducing Aurora

With some relatively mild weather over us, I heated up my workshop and Robert and I have begun to create my “junk person”.  Here are some pictures of her progress.

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

End of day one.  We’ve gotten the major components together and I only broke 1 hack saw blade, and one drill bit.  Pretty good day!

Day Two.  I worked alone putting her face on, and accessorizing other parts.

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

End of day two.  Pretty happy with the way it’s going so far.

Day Three.  The skirt and ears are going on today.

KODAK Digital Still Camera

End of day three.  Wow, that skirt was a pain in the ***!  But I like the way it looks and it swings a little, which is a nice touch.  I have to do some more “junking” to find her arms.  Not sure what I will come up with, but I’ll know it when I see it.

Since getting her face and other accessories on, I did some research and decided to call her “Aurora”.  She is the Roman Goddess of the Dawn.  Each morning she opens the gates for her brother, Sol (the Sun), the ride in his chariot across the sky.  Her sister is Luna (the Moon), and her children are the Four Winds (North, East, South, West).  I will keep this in mind in further accessorizing.

Will post further progress when I have it.

Peace,

Sheri

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Art Projects | Tagged , | Leave a comment

What I’ve Been Doing

Welcome to 2016!  Wow, last year seemed to fly by.  Here are some pictures of some of the things that kept me so busy during 2015.

I have also finally gotten my own studio/workshop.  We finished the inside and I absolutely love it!

KODAK Digital Still Camera

I’ve also been trying to improve my photography skills.  Since I live in the middle of the Huron National Forest, my favorite subjects are anything outside!

Since we have finally gotten quite a bit of snow now, we will be heading out and doing some snowshoeing tomorrow. . .

Peace,

Sheri

Posted in Art Projects, Nature, Photographs | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Gone, But Not Forgotten

I have been away for quite some time, and now I am ready to get back into sharing my wonderful little corner of the world.  Working on the Gallery page and will upload new images soon.

Peace,

Sheri

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Hare Trail

I have a feeling today may be our last snowshoe outing.  We are forecast to have temperatures in the high 40’s to low 50’s for the next four days, and that does not bode well for snow activities.  All that means is that ‘mud’ season is close at hand!

We couldn’t pass up the beautiful sunshine and mild temperatures to explore yet another unnamed trail.  We were surprised at the depth of the snow on this side of Sunny Lake Road.  Our trekking poles sank at least a foot and the snow has become very grainy.  When it gets like this, it doesn’t pack well, so with each step, you sink the whole foot and then some!

100_6599-2

IMG_2288-2

I think this area may have been a Kirkland Warbler protected area when the jack pines were small.  Some of the plots have since been logged and I think this trail is one of the old logging roads used to remove the trees.

After about the first 1/2 mile, we came upon what we thought was a large sinkhole, not sure if there was ice at the bottom, will have to come back in the spring to see.  (Located behind Robert in the picture below.)

100_6602-2

Since this trail is not on any of our maps, we kind of thought we knew where it would come out, but we figured we’d find out when we got there.  Sometimes that’s the surprise in the adventure.

IMG_2304-2

100_6600-2

We continued on and after coming to our second cleared area, my stomach told me that the muffin and yogurt I had for breakfast had since left me and that I needed to have a snack.  I found a sitting area on some logs and silently hoped that nothing was hibernating under my behind!

 

IMG_2308-2

After resting and eating for a bit, we continued on down the trail and to my surprise I spotted a snowshoe hare running from one pile of trees to another.  Robert was able to see where it had stopped and get a picture of it.  Look just below center for it’s black tipped ears and white body.  What a treat!  So we decided to call this trail the Hare Trail.

IMG_2311-2This is the first snowshoe hare I’ve ever seen in the wild, and it makes all the sore muscles worth it!  We turned around shortly after spotting the hare, we told ourselves that we’d come back in the spring and hike it until we find out where it ends.

Peace,

Sheri

 

Posted in Nature, Photographs | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

“Deer Bed” Trail

We set out on Saturday, the 28th of February to snowshoe the Ruffed Grouse Trail just west of us.  When we arrived, we were very disappointed to see that the whole area had just been logged.  The parking area was still there, but the signage was gone and we didn’t know how much of the trail was left.  So we thought we’d come back in the spring and see what, if anything, of the trail was left.

So we decided to go to another of our favorite trails, Twin Lakes.  About a quarter of a mile from the parking area, we were again disappointed in the fact that the road was totally flooded and impassable.  So we turned around and figured that a snowshoe outing was not to be today.

After studying our Michigan Gazetteer, we found Sunny Lake Road and noticed that a lot of little trail lines emanated from it.  Since that road is quite close to Glennie, we thought we’d see what some of the trails looked like.  The road was nicely plowed and we found 4 trails that looked like they would be good to snowshoe.  By now, it’s late in the afternoon, so we decided to postpone our snowshoeing until tomorrow, we then headed to the Glennie Bar for an awesome bar burger.

On Sunday we headed out on one of the trails we’d seen the day before.

KODAK Digital Still Camera

The trail started out relatively flat, but soon we found ourselves along the edge of a very large ravine, and the ups and downs soon began.  We came across a sign that I’d never seen before in the woods.  It was a pleasant surprise to see and even more surprising that it wasn’t riddled with bullet holes!

KODAK Digital Still Camera

We didn’t see anything poke it’s head out at us, I’m sure that whomever was staying at the Inn, was still sleeping.  We did notice a very large number of deer tracks and trails.  I think we crossed the I-75 of deer trails a couple of times!  Then we started seeing the bedding areas.  By the looks of the beds, and the sheer number of them, I swear there must have been a hundred deer out there!

IMG_2253-2

There also was quite a number of downed trees that we had to circumnavigate, one tree we even had to get on our hands and knees and crawl under, that was humorous in itself.

IMG_2252-2

We finally came to an area that was just impassable and by now we were ready to turn around.  We took a short break and then headed back out.

KODAK Digital Still Camera

Since this trail was unnamed, we decided to call it “Deer Bed” Trail.  I’m sure someone else has a name for it, but until then, we’ll stick with ours.  It was a great day, and always fun doing a new trail because you never know what you may find.

Peace,

Sheri

Posted in Nature, Photographs | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Norway Ridge Trails, Alpena, MI

Last Saturday was a “warm” day, relatively speaking, to what we’ve recently had, so we decided to finally do Norway Ridge Trails, just south of Alpena, Michigan.  Robert had purchased a pair of skis recently and has been dying to try them out.

100_6541-2

We weren’t sure of the terrain, so we decided to just head out and figure out where to turn around when we felt like it.

100_6543-2

IMG_2213-2

I finally could wear just a sweater and a vest, and even that was a little warm!

100_6546-2

IMG_2215-2

Overall, the trails were in pretty good condition.  Fresh snow would make them even better.  I was glad to see that they are heavily used, and that snowshoers are welcome, provided they don’t trample the track-set.  We met both skiers and snowshoers and we all had a great day.

Peace,

Sheri

Posted in Nature, Photographs | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Munising, MI Part 2

Yesterday and today (10th and 11th) were very active for Robert and I, here’s a photo journal of our adventures.

We started our day at the Munising Ski Trails, (the locals call them the Pictured Rocks Trails).  The groomer had just finished and it’s always awesome when you’re the first ones to do newly groomed trails.

IMG_1992-2

IMG_1985-2

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

After finishing these trails, we went up to Sand Point to see the ice curtains on Grand Island.

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

This is Miner’s Castle, part of Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore.  From here we did the Marsh Trail not far from Sand Point.

IMG_2032-2

We were walking almost even with the handrail of the wooden walkway!

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

After the Marsh Trail, we went to the Munising Falls, these were amazing!

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

IMG_2057-2

To finish off this day, we went to Wagner Falls just south of Munising.

KODAK Digital Still Camera

IMG_2093-2

On Wednesday, we decided to go to the Eben Ice Caves.  We’d heard so much about them, that we figured it was finally time to see what they are all about.  All I can say is “Wow!”  The hike out and back was lengthy, and the terrain was quite difficult but it was well worth the effort.

KODAK Digital Still Camera

IMG_2115-2

KODAK Digital Still Camera

This picture if from the top of the ravine.  We then backtracked and found a trail down to the base of the ice falls.

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

On the way back to Munising, we noticed two eagles at a carcass in the middle of a field.  By the time we got stopped, one of the eagles had flown off, but this one must have been a little hungrier!

We have had a great four days here, unfortunately we have to leave to go home tomorrow.  But I know we will be back many more times this year, and in the different seasons.

Peace,

Sheri

Posted in Nature, Photographs | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment