Rural Life in the UP of Michigan Some stories about life on 160 rural acres in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan

August 14, 2011

Canoe on Otter Lake

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin0 @ 8:48 pm

It seems that at the beginning of every summer, we make a solemn pledge that this year, by golly, we’ll spend more time out in the water in our small boats. We are fortunate enough to live in a water wonderland, and so often we get tied up with projects and bam, the summer is over and we’ve barely wet the bottoms of our boats.

We do have a fleet. A Core Craft 17′ canoe I bought when I was a teenager. One winter it got crushed by the snow, and I almost landfilled it, but my mechanic suggested that fiberglassing isn’t that hard to do and that I should really try it. Try it I did, and resurrected it for many a wonderful trip. There are still broken places in the gunnels that I need to patch every few years.

Our second boat is a small aluminum Grumman dingy with a tiny outboard motor. We mostly use the oars with this boat, though. It is just right for Alice, Franco and me. We’ve taken this boat out on Lake Victoria; a manmade lake near Rockland. The place they put this lake is breathtaking, and we always enjoy going there.

Our third boat is a Klepper 2-person folding kayak. We have had this boat for several years now, but haven’t used it enough that it goes together quickly. They say it can be done in 15 minutes, but I’d say it takes me more like an hour to get it together. My goal when I bought this boat on eBay was to have a craft we could take along in our small aluminum truck camper, so we can enjoy the water when we do our travelling.

The last boat is a 16′ Mad River kevlar canoe. We’ve used this canoe in the Boundary Waters and the Silvania Wilderness. It weighs a tad over 40# and makes the portages as easy as they can be.

canoe.jpgLast Wednesday we set the alarm for 6:00 am and headed for the lake just a few miles from where we live. The canoe we used is the Mad River kevlar. We had heard the winds would be light that day, and Alice (bless her) helped push me into getting the steam up to just do this thing. We are a pretty well oiled machine when we get to the edge of the water. After so many years each knows the jobs they are responsible for. We were in the water and under way just as the sun was coming up. It was a glorious day and the paddle was fabulous. We essentially had the lake to ourselves until we saw one boat on our way back. Just as we were setting off, I noticed the sun peaking out from ahead of us, so I snapped this picture.

Next year, we’ll do some more on the water.

1 Comment »

  1. Mary and I made the same resolution. Last fall we bought a used Wenonah Minnesota II that is kevlar and weighs in at 42#. It seems our old canoe has gotten heavier each year and gotten harder to get on top of the truck (maybe the truck is getting taller?). We have had it out only twice so far this year but it was great each time.

    Comment by Bill Davis — August 15, 2011 @ 10:11 am

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