Lake Michigan Loop – Days 25-27

I am enjoying the views and campsites along the lake. Yesterday afternoon I camped at Platte River Campground which is part of the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. I rode my bike two miles from camp along the river to the lake. What a gorgeous view! In the distance I could see Sleeping Bear Dunes and Empire Bluffs. At the mouth of the Platte River, there were fishermen catching salmon, and lots of people swimming, kayaking and paddle boarding. Great place to visit if you have the time.

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Just one mile north of Arcadia, I stopped at a scenic lookout, and boy was I glad I did. There was a stairway with about two hundred stairs leading to a platform. I climbed the stairs (like I need more exercise), and found the best view of Lake Michigan so far. What do you think?

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It’s apple picking time in Michigan. All of the apple trees I have passed were loaded with fruit.

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I passed a fruit stand in front of an old farmhouse because I saw a lot of pear trees. Sure enough, they had Bartlett pears, along with three or four different varies of apples, and plums. They were selling everything by the bushel, but I only wanted one pear and one plum. After I picked out the two pieces of fruit, the owners told me to keep my money. What a nice gesture! Turns out the lady grew up in Xenia. We talked about how the Cincinnati/Dayton area has changed so much over the last 30 years. She is very happy to be living in the fruit orchards of west central Michigan.
I have been blessed with many tailwinds along the trip. My luck ran out on Day 26. On the ride from Manistee to Pentwater, the winds from the south started to pick up. By the time I got to Ludington, they were 14mph, with gusts up to 24mph. I knew I was in for a tough ride when I passed a wind farm. All the wind turbines were turned in the direction I was headed, and they were turning around very fast. It was a challenge to ride against the headwind. I would curse and swear for a few minutes, then ride a mile. I would curse and swear again, and ride another mile. Trees were my saviors. Anything to help break the power of the wind.
I reached Pentwater in an exhausted state. I set up camp at Charles Mears State Park. The park has a beautiful sandy beach, so I changed into my swim trunks and took an invigorating swim. This was my first full immersion baptism in Lake Michigan since starting my trip. Definitely what I needed, and I left the water feeling much better.
On Day 27, most of my ride was on the Hart-Montague Trail, a well maintained 27mile rail-to-trail path. There was also a bike path through Muskegon. Lots of pretty fowers in bloom along the path.

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3 thoughts on “Lake Michigan Loop – Days 25-27

  1. Bob,
    Fabulous fotos Ifone? Have been following your ride from Charlottesville, where Daniel and Michelle are now safely back in law school. Staying in their apartment along with their two cats. Muskegon is where Daniel played in an AVP tournament qualifier years ago. Except for the tournament (they won their first match and then eliminated) I remember the gaunt shells of industrial buildings and the eerie silence of the place. Sic transit gloria mundi.

    Daniel and I drove to Rehovoth Beach, Delaware on Saturday. Along the way we picked up his coed partner, Jessica. It has been their tradition to play in two big beach tournaments there: “First Rites” in May and “Last Rites” in September. Daniel is kinda out of shape. Law school does that. Still, they took 3rd in Open. I did the feeding, the cheering and the driving, plus got to meet some old friends.

    Stay safe and warm. When you come home (will you ever?) go slow, as the pace of civilization may shock you. Haha.
    Ethan

  2. Great pics and the commentary is great as well. As you describe the wind, I can the feeling of empathy for you. Been there. Still wish I could’ve joined you this time. Sounds like a good warmup to the Transamerica.. Keep on rolling!

  3. Thanks for the update. Beautiful. Hope you had Bob Seger’s (A Michigan favorite son) Against the Wind running through your head to help you battle.

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