Back from the camping trip

I went to the Porcupine Mountains on the upper peninsula of Michigan with my dad last week. We had a lot of fun camping and hiking around. I got my first taste of real backpacking. It made hiking more strenuous, but it was fun and satisfying being able to bring everything we needed with us on our backs.

We spent one night in a rustic cabin on Mirror Lake, in the middle of the park. We backpacked in two and a half miles to this site, which was quite the initiation to carrying that much weight around as you hike. It’s a lovely hike, though, so we had a lot of fun taking in the views and noting the wildflowers by the trail.

In the evening, when the last of the wind died down, the lake really lived up to its name. It got very clear, and we had a great time just sitting by the fire among the hemlocks.

Mirror Lake in the Porcupine Mountains

The second cabin we stayed in was near to the shore of Lake Superior. The park is pretty buggy this time of year, so we thought maybe being by the lake would bring some welcome wind to keep the bugs away. Unfortunately, this area was thick with mosquitos, and what’s worse, the cabin didn’t seem to be able to keep them out.

We spent a fairly horrific half-hour after bedtime trying to kill all the mosquitos in the cabin, but it was clear that more were coming in all the time. I hadn’t slept very well on the trip thus far (a sole mosquito kept waking me up in the other cabin), and I was near the end of my rope.

So we ended up hiking out of the site in the middle of the night (it was only about three quarters of a mile, so not unmanageable with headlamps). We got a hotel for the night, which was kind of a bummer, but I slept very well that night, so it was probably worth it.

We also spent a night at Tettegouche State Park on the north shore of Lake Superior. This was the one night we actually camped out in our tents. This night went great, and was less buggy than either of the other sites. It was a cart-in campsite, which allowed us to bring in a cast-iron skillet, which we used to make eggs and hashbrowns. Great camping food!

Have you been to the Porcupine Mountains? Have you been backpacking? Have you been camping? Let me know your thoughts at my Ctrl-C email: gome ​@ ​