Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Chippewa Falls, WI–part 2

Chelsea and Mack’s wedding was held Sept. 10 on my sister’s farm.  The mosquitoes were out for the wedding rehearsal, but it was a bit windy the day of the wedding so no mosquitoes (I think they may have sprayed also).

Rehearsal photos - Chelsea and her dad, Tom

chippewa_falls_rehdin3

Chelsea and Mack chippewa_falls_rehdin2

Wedding Day -

The view from the hill where the wedding was held-

chippewa_falls_wed18

Tom, my brother-in-law, had his arms full with my grand niece, Tenley, and my niece, Avery. chippewa_falls_wed17

The bride, groom and parents of each -chippewa_falls_wed16

The reception was held in one of the sheds on the farm.  Of course they spent a lot of time cleaning, repairing, reroofing… and it looked great.

chippewa_falls_wed9

The decorations were mostly antiques.

The picture below is of my mom and a kitchen hutch.  This hutch was bought by my parents shortly after they got married.  My brother used it for a while and now my sister has it.  The cabinet doors have been replaced due a moving accident by my nephews!

chippewa_falls_wed15

chippewa_falls_wed13

Above is a wall of family “photos”.  Ok, most are old photos of members of the bride and grooms families.  The other framed “photos” are me, my mom and my sister.

P4370644 (1024x683)P4370646 (1024x683)

P4370713 (1024x683)

My nieces and nephew enjoying their meal. 

chippewa_falls_wed4

My mom had never been inside a porta potty, so since these were never used porta potties (my sister was excited to learn she got brand new ones) we had my mom inspect it. 

chippewa_falls_wed5

Tenley was so tired she fell asleep holding a crayon.

chippewa_falls_wed6

Dirk and Ember -

chippewa_falls_wed7

My nieces – Summer, Chelsea and Morgan

chippewa_falls_wed8

chippewa_falls_wed10

Chelsea and my sister, Amy -

chippewa_falls_wed12

Chelsea showing the twice “borrowed” earrings.  My sister “borrowed” these from my mom when she was a teenager and never returned them then Chelsea borrowed them for the wedding.

chippewa_falls_wwed3

Mack and Chelsea’s first dance.  Chelsea made her dress out of her mom’s wedding dress and another dress.  It was very pretty and original!

P4370741 (1024x683)

P4370742 (1024x683)

Chelsea and her dad -

P4370746 (1024x683)

We left early as mom and my nephew’s family were flying out very early the next morning and had to drive to the Minneapolis/St. Paul airport. 

Chippewa Falls, WI part 1

My main reason for visiting this area the first 2 weeks of September was to visit my sister and her family and attend my niece’s wedding.  Of course, having a nice state park and a good biking trail nearby is great too!

Before I get to the wedding photo’s (which I understand a couple of you are waiting on) I want to post a few other things.

First, I had never fired a gun before this trip.  A few days after the wedding my sister invited me over for lunch and she mentioned that her family was going shooting.  She said they would show me how to shoot if I wanted to.  I wasn’t sure if I even wanted to hold a gun, but I went.  I ended up shooting a 9mm glock (I think that’s right) 3 times.  I missed the target (an old water heater) the first time, but got it the next 2 times.  I don’t have a picture of me shooting, but below is my sister, Amy, being taught how to shoot by her son, Gavin.

chippewa_falls_shooting1chippewa_falls_shooting3chippewa_falls_shooting4

The better shooters, shot up this gourd and almost made a smiley face.

The Old Abe trail is the rail trail that is just a mile or so from Lake Wissota State Park.  I have ridden the trail several times and rode it 5 times while I was there, from a quick trip of 10 miles to 30 miles.

chippewa_falls_old_abe_trailchippewa_falls_old_abe_trl2chippewa_falls_old_abe_trl3 

On one of my trips I noticed that they were setting up for a festival or something and after some research I decided I wanted to go to one of the events.

chippewa_falls_demo_derby1chippewa_falls_demo_derby12chippewa_falls_demo_derby14chippewa_falls_demo_derby15chippewa_falls_demo_derby16

Yep, a Demolition Derby.  I had never been to one and didn’t think I wanted to go to one for the entire event.  So I rode my bike there and watched for about 15 minutes from the bike trail.  Very interesting.   As you can see from the crowds, it was well attended.

While at Lake Wissota, I saw something I had been searching for.  A white squirrel!!!!  Unfortunately the only time I saw the almost solid white squirrel (it had a little black patch on the back of it’s head) I was walking to the restrooms and had no camera.  But on a couple of my squirrel hunting trips (using my camera skills, not my newly acquired pistol skills) I saw a squirrel with a solid white tail and more white on his body than most squirrels.  Another camper told me there was at least one white squirrel and 3 partially white squirrels. 

chippewa_falls_lake_wissota_squirrel1chippewa_falls_lake_wissota_squirrel12chippewa_falls_lake_wissota_squirrel13chippewa_falls_lake_wissota_squirrel14

Also while there, my mom, nephew and his family came in for the wedding.  One day we went to the local park/zoo.  Below is a picture of Jackson enjoying the bears.

chippewa_falls_irvine_park

 

I will post wedding pictures in part 2.

Iron River, MI

Once again, I am very behind in my blogging. 

During August, I stayed in Iron River where I have stayed several times before.  I enjoy the Apple Blossom Trail that is next to the park.  I walked and biked it just about everyday for the first couple of weeks.  I also went into Wisconsin and the Crystal Lake trail a couple of times.  It was a little hillier than I am used to, but was fun. 

I also went to several waterfalls that I have posted about before, so I will just post one of my favorites, Bond Falls.

iron_rver_bond_falls1

One day while walking the Apple Blossom trail I noticed the back of my foot was occasionally hurting.  After a couple of miles I turned around and headed back to the RV park.   By the time I got back it really hurt.  Many years ago, I had problems with a bone spur on the bottom of my heel.  It sort of felt like that.  So for a few days I didn’t walk much, I did bike as that didn’t seem to hurt.  I tried walking again and it bothered me again. 

After doing some research on the web, I think I have a pump bump (Haglands deformity).   I was hoping it would magically go away, but hasn’t so I have a doctor’s appointment in a week or so to see what it is and what I can do about it. 

From Iron River I headed to Chippewa Falls, WI.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Houghton, MI

I went back to one of my favorite places the month of July – Houghton, MI.  This is my 4th time here since I have been full timing.  I really love the cooler weather and I enjoy the 4 mile paved walking/biking path that starts at the RV park. 

The thimbleberry is a berry that is known in the Upper Peninsula and other parts of the country, but I had never heard of it before visiting the U.P.  There are a good many bushes in the RV park and several miles down the path that I walk/bike. 

Early in the month they were blooming and just starting to show the berry.  Towards the end of the month I would pick and eat some each day.

houghton_thimbleberrieshoughton_thimbleberries2houghton_thimbleberryhoughton_biketrail

The above picture is some thimbleberry bushes beside the bike path. 

I went back to one of my favorite places several times, Canyon Falls.  This is about a 45 minute drive from the RV park, but goes beside a great produce stand so not a bad drive! The falls are only a 10 – 15 minute walk from the parking lot, but continuing on leads to great scenery in the small gorge and a few places where the locals hangout for fun.

houghton_canyonfallshoughton_canyonfalls1houghton_canyonfalls_gorgehoughton_canyonfalls_jump

Above shows some folks jumping off a 10 – 15 foot cliff. 

Exposed roots and trees that live even though it looks impossible always interest me. 

houghton_canyonfalls_tree

One day I drove a couple of hours to Porcupine Mountain State Park.  I had hoped to also visit the Black River Harbor area where there are some great waterfalls but we had a lot of rain in the last few days and a small tornado hit that area so it was closed for cleanup of the trails.  But I enjoyed my trip to the Porkies.  There was more water going through than I have ever seen. 

The first picture is a picture from this visit – 2016.  The next 2 are pictures of the same area taken in 2011 and 2012.  Many people come to see the circular holes the water has worn into the rocks, but they were not visible at this time.

houghton-porkies6

2011houghton_2011pork_presque_isle_1 (768x1024)

2012houghton_2012wake_porcupine_river (1024x768)

houghton_porkies5houghton_porkies2houghton_porkies4

I don’t know if this damage was from the storm just a few days ago or past storms, but there was a 3 – 4 foot gap in the trail.  I thought I could step across, but luckily I had brought my hiking poles and where I thought I could step was just debris covering more of the hole.  It looked like some people had jumped across, but I decided since I was alone it wasn’t something I wanted to attempt.  So I backtracked a bit and went up the small hill/cliff on the side and went around it. 

Have you ever wanted to go to the end of the earth?  As you can see below I was close!!!! 

houghton_porkies1

One day I drove into Marquette to do some shopping in a larger town.  On my way I wanted to go to a waterfall close to Ishpeming.  I don’t think I would try it again because the road was close to being a 4-wheel drive road and I never found the falls, even with the few directional signs I found.  I found what I thought was the parking lot, but there were 3 – 4 trails that lead from it and I could not figure out which one lead to the falls.

houghton_waterfall_road

I went to Coopers Harbor a couple of times.  One of my favorite places up there is Hunter’s Point.  I love the rocks!

houghton_hunters_pt1houghton_hunters_pt2

I walked and/or biked most mornings.  One of my favorite things to do was bike the path a time or 2 and stop at Nara Nature trails before heading back to the RV Park.  This year the really need to cut the plants along the boardwalk. 

houghton_nara_boardwalk

There were many Cedar Waxwings. houghton_nara_cedar_waxwing

The photo below was taken from a bench at the end of one of the boardwalks ( a nice resting place after biking and walking). This is not a black and white photo, just taken very early on a grey day.  houghton_nara_trails

From Houghton, I headed down to Iron River where I currently am.