Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Pedal-Paddle 2012

This Spring, I bought a road bike, thanks to Clayton's influence (see http://pedalperupedal.blogspot.com/). I've been biking and canoeing a lot this summer. A few weeks ago, I got the idea to combine the two. My canoe is inflatable, which makes it portable enough to carry on a bike. That may seem strange, but its quite simple. I carry the canoe on the back of my bike, and then when I get to the river, I inflate. Once the canoe is in the river, I can carry the bike in it. I've done a few short trips, biking a few miles and then canoeing for about an hour or two.

On Friday, I left for an overnight trip. I expected to bike about 35 miles the first day, and canoe around 15. Then on Saturday, I would wake up early, canoe about 10 miles, and then bike another 5 to get home. I left Ann Arbor at about 10 AM and headed north towards Kent Lake in Island Lake State Recreation Area. It was about 25 miles, and my legs felt pretty good. 

My first view of the river put a knot in my stomach because the water was very low. I decided not to worry about it, and started paddling downstream. It was slow but okay for the first couple of hours. Then the debris problem started. There were so many downed trees blocking the river, that it took me about 4 hours to go the last 2 miles. It was pretty miserable to say the least.

I decided I'd rather bike the extra distance than keep battling the trees, so I pulled out at a road crossing and packed up the canoe. I headed to Hudson Mills to a campground and set up camp. I tried to go to sleep at about 10 PM, but was unable. I was too exhausted to sleep, and it was still 75 degrees outside. I wasn't enjoying myself, so I packed up and biked home. It was actually my favorite part of the day. Stars in the sky, fireflies, and no traffic.

My bike computer said I went 56 miles, and google maps says 59.1. I guess they calculate distances using different projection systems.

View Bike/Canoe Trip (June 15, 2012) in a larger map

Leaving home Friday morning with 55 lbs of gear.

The beach at Kent Lake

Huron River just below Kent Lake dam.

Huron River, somewhere in Island Lake State R.A.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Fairy Doors

Like I was saying, Ann Arbor has a thing for fairies.

The city has maps available of all the fairy hide outs in the city. There are fairy villages ...

And many of the businesses in town have had fairy doors installed for the many fairy citizens of Ann Arbor. James and I went looking for a few, but apparently there are quite a few more!