Hey from Chicago

Spuvak

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Joined
Dec 13, 2015
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5
My name is Lou. When I lived in Boston in my 20's, I got out 7-8 times a year for a backpack or canoe trip. Great spots in NH, VT, ME and NY were all easy to drive to. Moving to Chicago (a relative desert of similar opportunities) and getting a real job changed all that. When I did get out though, I made sure it was to somewhere spectacular. I've had some great hikes in the Sierras and the Winds. I've just retired, and am looking forward to exploring many more beautiful spaces. However, I'm not comfortable flying quite yet, so I've been backpacking more locally (Boundary Waters in MN, a section of the NCST in MI) and concentrating on lowering my base weight (down to about 12 lbs.). The posts on this site have been great for feeding my imagination and helping to plan future adventures.
 

Janice

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Joined
Dec 5, 2017
Messages
500
My name is Lou. When I lived in Boston in my 20's, I got out 7-8 times a year for a backpack or canoe trip. Great spots in NH, VT, ME and NY were all easy to drive to. Moving to Chicago (a relative desert of similar opportunities) and getting a real job changed all that. When I did get out though, I made sure it was to somewhere spectacular. I've had some great hikes in the Sierras and the Winds. I've just retired, and am looking forward to exploring many more beautiful spaces. However, I'm not comfortable flying quite yet, so I've been backpacking more locally (Boundary Waters in MN, a section of the NCST in MI) and concentrating on lowering my base weight (down to about 12 lbs.). The posts on this site have been great for feeding my imagination and helping to plan future adventures.
Hi Lou - congrats on your retirement! My husband and I live in SE Michigan. We relish our adventures out West but have also enjoyed beautiful trips in Michigan (Pictured Rocks, Porcupine Mtns, Isle Royale, plus a few shorter ones). Let me know if you want info about any of those.
 

Spuvak

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Joined
Dec 13, 2015
Messages
5
Thanks Janice. All your suggestions have been on my radar but I haven't explored those possibilities much yet. I'm thinking of doing a kind of last minute trip next week. The Porkies look intriguing this time around. Looks like I can spend a few good days in the woods there.
 

Janice

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Joined
Dec 5, 2017
Messages
500
Thanks Janice. All your suggestions have been on my radar but I haven't explored those possibilities much yet. I'm thinking of doing a kind of last minute trip next week. The Porkies look intriguing this time around. Looks like I can spend a few good days in the woods there.
Fall color is just at its peak in SE Michigan (very late this year), so it's possible there might still be some leaves on the trees. I imagine it will be cold at night - warm gear will be good! If you want recommendations for trails & campsites, let me know. We only went once, but I definitely had preferences and will be happy to share ideas if you're interested.
 

Janice

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Joined
Dec 5, 2017
Messages
500
Fall color is just at its peak in SE Michigan (very late this year), so it's possible there might still be some leaves on the trees. I imagine it will be cold at night - warm gear will be good! If you want recommendations for trails & campsites, let me know. We only went once, but I definitely had preferences and will be happy to share ideas if you're interested.
@Spuvak FYI - just saw this: https://www.mlive.com/weather/2021/...er_breaking&utm_term=Newsletter_breaking_news
 

Spuvak

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Dec 13, 2015
Messages
5
I guess I should be asking what your favorite hikes in Michigan have been. I'm still flexible at this point. I plan on being out 3 nights.
 

Janice

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Joined
Dec 5, 2017
Messages
500
I guess I should be asking what your favorite hikes in Michigan have been. I'm still flexible at this point. I plan on being out 3 nights.
I haven't done any November backpacking in Michigan so don't know for sure what would be best. Our summer favorites are Pictured Rocks, Isle Royale (which isn't an option now), and Porkies. From Chicago it's closest to the Porkies. For 3 nights, you could consider driving the first day and park in the lot near the Lake of the Clouds. From there you could do a short hike west to the first night's DRY camp along the escarpment - we didn't stay up there, but I scoped out the sites and decided that Big Carp 3 (BC-3) would be my top choice. Then the next day head down Big Carp and - depending on mileage preference - go Correction Line Trail to Little Carp trail heading toward Lake Superior (or for shorter, stay on Big Carp and go straight to Lake Superior). Lovely scenery and campsites along Little Carp. It will be MUDDY along the Lake Superior trail, so be prepared for that, but I think the gorgeous views would be worth it. Sunset will be further south now than when we were there, so if seeing sunset matters to you (it matters to me) try to pick a site where the shoreline hopefully won't block it. We did a 5-night trip and stayed 2 nights along Lake Superior, and I loved that. Depending on how much ground you want to cover, you could go further inland by Government Peak (which is a non-peak) but that was my least favorite part, at least in the buggy August when we were there.

If you decide to do Pictured Rocks (which is gorgeous and I love!) you have to figure out a shuttle plan, as it's a straight trail from east to west (or west to east). I don't know how feasible it is to arrange at this time of year.

Whatever you end up doing, I hope you have a great trip!
 

Janice

Member
Joined
Dec 5, 2017
Messages
500
I haven't done any November backpacking in Michigan so don't know for sure what would be best. Our summer favorites are Pictured Rocks, Isle Royale (which isn't an option now), and Porkies. From Chicago it's closest to the Porkies. For 3 nights, you could consider driving the first day and park in the lot near the Lake of the Clouds. From there you could do a short hike west to the first night's DRY camp along the escarpment - we didn't stay up there, but I scoped out the sites and decided that Big Carp 3 (BC-3) would be my top choice. Then the next day head down Big Carp and - depending on mileage preference - go Correction Line Trail to Little Carp trail heading toward Lake Superior (or for shorter, stay on Big Carp and go straight to Lake Superior). Lovely scenery and campsites along Little Carp. It will be MUDDY along the Lake Superior trail, so be prepared for that, but I think the gorgeous views would be worth it. Sunset will be further south now than when we were there, so if seeing sunset matters to you (it matters to me) try to pick a site where the shoreline hopefully won't block it. We did a 5-night trip and stayed 2 nights along Lake Superior, and I loved that. Depending on how much ground you want to cover, you could go further inland by Government Peak (which is a non-peak) but that was my least favorite part, at least in the buggy August when we were there.

If you decide to do Pictured Rocks (which is gorgeous and I love!) you have to figure out a shuttle plan, as it's a straight trail from east to west (or west to east). I don't know how feasible it is to arrange at this time of year.

Whatever you end up doing, I hope you have a great trip!
Pack your snow gear!
 

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