Muse by David Teitsma

My attempt to understand and be understood.

Yesterday I left Grand Rapids first thing in the morning, and drove to Detroit. There I met up with Brian and Beth and we carpooled to Nick and Kelly's in East Palmyra. Yup that took a whole day. Once there, we packed and got made sure that we all had everything. Unfortunately, I realized that I left my camera in Detroit, and wasn't going to have one on the trip. This is a major bummer, even though everyone else has a camera and I'll be able to grab their photos.

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Today we woke up early again and left on a four-hour car ride to the Adirondacks. Slowly hills appeared, which grew to foothills, and then mountains started surrounding us. We arrived at the Calamity Creek Trailhead, had a brief lunch while dodging bugs. At the trailhead we met up with Joel and started our hike to Flowed Lands 4 miles away. I tried not to say it too much, but I was pumped / excited to be hiking / happy to be surrounded the beautiful creation. The wide path narrowed after a mile to a single trail. Slowly the slightly damp dirt and pebbles changed to thick, wet mud and huge rocks as the trail began to climb.

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Starting our hike!

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From left to right: Brian, Joel, Kelly, me, and Nick

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Her Beth stood in for Joel.

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Here is the muddy trail.

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Some points we all helped each other get through.

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Here I am comparing my belly to pregnant Kelly.

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After four hours of hiking we arrived at Flowed Lands. The first lean to that we came to was unoccupied, but we scoped out several other ones to see what the options were, but they were all taken. So we settled into our camp, unpacked, took the bear canisters up the hill far away from the lean-to (about 1/4 mile). The bear canisters are small black plastic barrels that a bear can't pick up or get into. Previously you would hang your food or anything with a scent (toothpaste, deodorant, soap, ....) from a branch but the bears learned how to get it done (so they could brush their teeth of course...). Now it is mandatory that you use a canister, and not any canister, but a black one without a screw top.

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We then went down to the lake and started cooking. We keep things simple we brought dehydrated food that all we had to do was just pour in boiling water and then let it sit for 10 minutes. I really enjoy the meals as they are tasty, just beware that there is a lot of salt in them.


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Here we are making dinner.

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This was our ‘dinner rock’.

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After dinner Joel and I went for a quick hike to scope out the area. I love to explore. Before we turned off the lantern we played a game of Euchre (of which Joel and I won).

I'm pretty sure we all went to sleep wondering if we would have a night time guest wake us in the night. Black bears are very active in this area and frequently visit the campsites at night to look for food. We were cautious and made sure that everything that had a smell to it was in the bear canisters. The lean-to we slept in was just three walls so it was easy for something (bugs, squirrels, raccoons, bears) to visit in the night.

Below is the tracklog from my GPS (well most of it…until it freaked out with about 3/4 of a mile to go).