Camping- it's in tents!

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Re: Camping

Postby Puddleglum » Sep 07, 2013 9:00 pm

Looking forward to the upcoming rendezvous in a few weeks near Elk River. I hope to have my capote sewn together by then. I think I shall need it as the weatherfolks are already calling for highs in the mid sixties by the end of next week. Been practicing on rope, and string making with plant fibers, so I hope to have something to show the kids during open time.
A little reminder going your way star ;) gazer
Weekend before the Mrs. will be joining me up on the North shore for an extended weekend. With the temp change expected, and it being further north we will be definitly be packing the longer pants, and sleeves. We are hoping to see some nice fall colors in the trees by then, as well as some clear nights for stargazing.
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Re: Camping

Postby stargazer » Sep 09, 2013 10:07 am

Thanks for the reminder, Puddleglum! It sounds like fun. I hope to attend this year but a number of real-life factors may alter those plans.

Our Labor Day trip to northwest Minnesota came as a strong cold front pushed in from Canada to relieve the heat and humidity. It was one of the most spectacular lightning shows I've seen in a long time of weather-watching - the catch is that we were driving straight for it. ;))

We encountered torrential rains on the road but the storm had mostly passed by the time we reached the park. Turns out a lightning strike had taken out a transformer and with it the electricity. Good thing I just had a tent!

There was a gorgeous sunset that evening as the clouds broke; the sky lit with deep purples and blazing oranges. And we were treated to a clear sky that night - probably the best I've seen all year - with some Iridium flares and a great view of the Milky Way. We may have seen Northern Lights low in the north but it might have just been lights from a town far away.

The days were cool and variably cloudy, allowing us to hike and enjoy campfires. The nights were clear with wonderful views of the stars. I'm ready to go again! (Not sure exactly when that will be, but hopefully at least a few more times this fall).
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Re: Camping

Postby Puddleglum » Sep 17, 2013 8:26 pm

The Mrs. and I are back from camping along the North Shore of Lake Superior. Must say the weather was quite agreeable. That is if you did not think about the temps getting below freezing at night, but that's what cold weather sleeping bags are for right ;)
Agate hunting was sporatic. We had a bit of surf to contend with. Saw one young lady who was better prepaired than this old scout, and had brought rubber boots. My hiking boots are waterRESISTANT, not waterPROOF, as my soaking toes will attest. I shall have to bring my pair next year, f I do not die of pneumonia before then.
Had to get up to check the outhouse door in the early morning, as usual. But it was well worth the chilly walk when I looked up at the night sky. Orion is starting his trek across the evening sky, and was in full view.
Gotta go to bed now. Tomorrow begins the repack for next weekend i-)
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Re: Camping

Postby Puddleglum » Sep 25, 2013 8:36 pm

Back from the rendezvous, and I must say it was worth the trip, even if I had to leave early.
Only downsides were;
It was a bit windy, and due to my forgetting the center pole for my canopy I had to borrow another pole from a friend, which promptly put several puncture holes in the canvase :((
Yellowjackets, which are a small form of hornet were all over. Several stings were administered by the little pests, but fortunatly no allergic reactions that I heard of.
On the upside;
Turnout was excellent. I don't know the exact numbers, but we defenitly had more tents than last year, including some new faces.
Weatherwise, it was a bit spotty with the wind, and a little rain ( followed by a grand rainbow ), but for the most part it was very calm.
Public turnout was sporatic, but it usually is. Though the people for the most part seemed very behaved. Even the children, for the most part. Though there are always those I am sorely tempted to teach knots to.
The demonstrations went well, with the blacksmith drawing many as usual.
We had one lady showing, and explaining the spinning wheel, and it's development. I did not know that Davinchi had a hand in some of that. Also the bowmaker held little archery instructions for many a child. (No younger siblings were asked to hold targets).
I was able to take some photos, some with the sepia setting on my camera, as well as motion video. If possible I will be posting them on the facebook site before next week. If you are interested look up Wapiti Historical Rendezvous Elk River. There are already some other folks who have stuff posted.
Now I must be off. I have yet to finish unpacking everything #:-s
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Re: Camping

Postby Puddleglum » Apr 02, 2014 8:15 pm

Yes, I know. Snow on the ground, and more in the forecast. So call me determined, or just plain insane, I am still planning on pitching a tent by the first weekend of May.
Actually, the Boy Scouts are going to be hosting some Weblos, and I have been asked to teach fire-starting, ( great skill for young boys to learn ), and I figured on showing up in my rendezvous outfit. If possible I will be pitching tent before the boys arrive, and be all in character.
Have a couple other encampments to hit this year, so this gives me a chance to get a jump on the season, and make sure all my gear is ready.
As for other adventures, The Mrs. and I hope to be seeing the southern shore of Lake Superior this summer. If we are lucky there might be some agates in out pockets when we get home.
Anyone else planning on excaping civilization this year?
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Re: Camping

Postby Shadowlander » Apr 07, 2014 6:58 am

Puddleglum wrote:Anyone else planning on excaping civilization this year?


Believe me, I want to! The wife and I are talking about getting a camper/trailer and then going on trips to campsites. It appears to be much less expensive than staying at a hotel, and frankly I miss making campfires and cooking over them. I wouldn't mind going on another canoe trip after a two decades or so, but that's a bit more involved. ;)) Right now we're looking for a camper that my wife's Jeep can tow...she's convinced we can only two 1000 lbs. and I'm reasonably sure we can do a lot more provided we're not towing around a tractor trailer rig. :D
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Re: Camping

Postby stargazer » Apr 07, 2014 9:49 am

This week may see the first 70F (21C) of the year and the snow is melting, so I'm getting camping fever too. (I enjoyed a backyard fire with friends last week, and I'm ready for more!)

My first scheduled camping trip is to a state park over Memorial Day, but weather permitting, there may be other trips before then.

Lake Superior's south shore, Puddleglum? Some years ago I camped at the UP's Porcupine Mountains and had a great time. Stargazing was a bit different in that after a lifetime of visiting the north shore, it was a bit disorienting to see the moon over the land to the south, rather than over the lake. ;))
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Re: Camping

Postby Shadowlander » Apr 07, 2014 11:28 am

Last Summer we were up in Duluth for the Tall Ships Festival and we saw a LOT of the Superior. If you wander up that far north give Duluth a look. The seaside/boardwalk portions are lovely and there's great museums and food, plus watching one of the gigantic ore freighters go through the gate is a breathtaking experience. Those things are HUGE! Pretty country up there too. Also if you get the opportunity try some Walleye out (fish), it's scrumptious!
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Re: Camping

Postby Puddleglum » Apr 07, 2014 7:38 pm

Been to Duluth a few times Shadowlander. It is indeed worth the stop. We have dined at Grandma's while one of the big ships passed by. Mostly been passing through though. The Mrs. and I have contemplated looking for a hotel nearby so we can catch more of the sights.
We have wandered as far upshore as Thunder Bay, and visited Ft. William. The meals they serve in their Inn are well worth the trip.
We are hoping to check out some of the lighthouses along the southern shore, as Splitrock has "been done" several times over (-| We are also into hunting the elusive agate /:) and I understand there are some good beaches to wander.
Looks like you beat me to the first fire this season stargazer ;) Our pit is still half full of snow, but I am determined to have a blazing inferno going next weekend X(
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Re: Camping

Postby stargazer » Apr 08, 2014 1:17 pm

Duluth is full of memories for me too. Back in the day my dad loved to stand by the ship canal and watch the big ore boats come and go. I haven't camped on the north shore for some years but that may change soon.

We visited Old Fort William once, Puddleglum, and had a great time. The living history enactors really got into their roles.

I'd love to return to Split Rock. We visit it often but I haven't actually camped there since Memorial Day 1992 (the year of the infamous Memorial Day snowfall in Blue Mounds State Park in far southwest Minnesota).
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Re: Camping

Postby Shadowlander » Apr 09, 2014 1:58 pm

You can camp at Split Rock? I thought it was just the lighthouse....
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Re: Camping

Postby Puddleglum » Apr 11, 2014 7:15 pm

I am told that there is family camping at Split Rock. Though from what I understand you don't want some of the sites should you be pron to walking in your sleep. The website spoke of one that has an excellent view of Lake Superior, and you might get wet.
Any chance folks have hiking trips planned as well? I know it is a bit off topic, but there are a few local, and state parks I hope to walk this spring, and summer. Got out to the local county park in snowshoes with one of the siblings this winter, and was able to track some raccoon family for a bit. I will be checking the same trail with the hope of getting some telephoto shots if I can find a good hiding place.
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Re: Camping

Postby stargazer » Apr 11, 2014 10:51 pm

Shadowlander, the Split Rock area has split jurisdiction, so to speak. The light station grounds are managed by the Minnesota Historical Society and are accessed by turning left from the entry station. But if you turn right instead, the state park (managed by the DNR) includes lakeshore, picnic areas and campground, and great views of the lighthouse.

There is no drive-in (car) camping here yet, but I understand plans are underway for a more modern campground to be built northeast of the lighthouse, on the land side of highway 61, presumably away from the historic site and lakeshore. Currently camping is by backpack or boat, or by cart-in (pull carts reminiscent of rickshaws). I think I know of the sites you mean, Puddleglum. A number of the sites have great views. Because there aren't many sites, getting a reservation for one can be difficult in the summer season.

I don't think hiking trips are too far off-topic, Puddleglum; it's all about getting outdoors a little during summers that here can be a bit too brief (old weather joke here: "What did you do this past summer?" "Well, it fell on a Tuesday and I had to work.")

Which parks are your favorites, Puddleglum? I'm always up for checking out new spots or discussing old favorites with others.
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Re: Camping

Postby Puddleglum » Apr 12, 2014 11:56 am

The local county park, which is an old Granit quarry, is one destination. There are many trails, and as I mentioned above much in the way of wildlife. The only drawback are some of the people. I am in favor of folks getting outdoors, it's just that some have no clue about what to do, or how to act. (Sorry, getting into rant mode ).
Another plus is the county keeps some of the pits stocked with trout, and when the season starts I will be out there with pole in hand. But then the cottonwood will be shedding, and floating on the water as well, so I will have to make sure I cast where it won't tangle in my line.
The elder sibling has been checking another site that he said had many tracks. Not just the expected deer. He also has seen several eagle along the Mississippi River, though they are a bit skittish. I imagine that it might be due to having eggs, or chicks to watch over.
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Re: Camping

Postby Shadowlander » Apr 14, 2014 5:52 am

The only drawback are some of the people. I am in favor of folks getting outdoors, it's just that some have no clue about what to do, or how to act.


What exactly are these people doing? ;))

We were talking about getting a camper, but our vehicle can only pull 1,000 lbs. max and this leaves us with a very narrow selection of campers to choose from, all of them popups. I think we need a deck on the back of the house more than that, and my wife wants a new central air conditioner set up, so we'll have to put that one on the back burner. Which leaves us with tents. ;))
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Re: Camping

Postby Puddleglum » Apr 15, 2014 3:31 pm

Without getting into too much detail Shadowlander, as some might get me a chastizing glance for breaking Narniaweb rules, some activities should be left at home :-$
For others, will suffice to say that there are certain rules of outdoor etiquette which those who tread therein should become versed in.
I shall list some;
1) As taught in the Scouts, Always leave a campsite cleaner than you found it. All too often I have found sites, be they a KOA, or primitive in the BWCA full of litter.
2) Treat the other campers site as theirs. Don't just wander through un-anounced at any time.
3) Keeping noise to respecful levels. While I enjoy a good song like anyone, Doing so after 10pm in a site where there there may be children, or bringing a boombox into the BWCA, and playing it loud enough to be heard a mile away is intolerable X(
These I suppose could be called my top all time complaints, but I am sure others can add to them.
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