Start: 6:00 AM - Zela Point (Bois Blanc Island)
Break: 7:30 AM - 2:30 PM Mackinac Island (includes 2 hr Circumnavigation)
Finish 6:00 PM - St. Ignas, MI
Time: 5:00 hours
Daily dist: 15 miles
Total dist: 4500+
Companions: Donna and Steve Bassett
Weather: ENE then E winds up to 10 mph, mostly cloudy, some rain 70’s
Notes: Did two hour circumnavigation of the island to wait for it to come alive.
My dad and I had a somewhat hurried conversation when I called home today, with the sound of his four grandsons calling in the background, I had just enough time to wish him a Happy Birthday before he was pulled back into the hubub of activity in a home full of family. The pain of wishing I was there was dampened some by knowing that this would be the last of his birthdays I would miss. It was dampened more with the fact that tonight I was staying with the Bassett family who had invited me to stay just a week or so ago and who showed me the kind of generosity and kindness that never ceases to amaze me.
Before I passed under the bridge and met up with the Bassetts, I had spent the better part of the day touring Mackinac Island. The famous tourist destination was everything everyone had warned in the way of fudge shops, T-shirt stores, and crowds of tourists on bicycles and horse drawn wagons. The gleaming white Fort Mackinac high on the limestone bluff above town and equally impressive Grand Hotel were definitely sites worth seeing. You can’t get on the lane in front of the hotel without paying $10 (which I decided isn’t worth it) but I still got close enough to admire the white giant that helped turn the island into what it is today.
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After spending half the day visiting Mackinac Island, I paddled under the Mackinac Bridge and finally entered Lake Michigan at 4:00 PM. There I met up with the Basset family a with whom I spent the night.