Covid Camping in Northern Michigan

I’ve been patiently waiting for my first adventure in my re-imagining phase. I didn’t really camp much last year so I was a little rusty putting everything together, and, of course, traveling anywhere during this time is not particularly wise. But I decided to travel just a few hours up the road to northern Michigan where it’s not super crowded. I have fallen in love with the M-22 area but have not had a real opportunity to spend some time there. Well, guess what? I have all the time in the world right now.

It’s been nice because it’s less crowded than it would be in a typical summer. I was able to snag a walk-in campsite for one night (unheard of usually) in the Platte River Campground. I’ll figure out tonight this afternoon. If nothing else, I’ll drive home. As a special bonus, one of my best girlfriends lives in Traverse City, so I get to hang with her as long as I’m here. She’s got an infant so she’s eager for some girlfriend time as well. Yesterday, she had about 50 things on the agenda. We didn’t get through all of them, but we had a great time, and we will do more of them today.

We had lunch on the grounds of a historic mental institution turned park and shopping destination which was super cool. A lovely creek ran through it. Abby bought us lunch, and we sat in the shade with her little bundle of joy and Ashok and caught up on all of the happenings of this year.

Abby grew up in Leland Mi, and she’s always posting pictures of an area called Fishtown which is a charter fishing destination and it’s 1900 fishing village has been preserved and repurposed for shopping and dining. I’ve been wanting to visit, so we made a stop there yesterday. We shopped in her father’s store, and we were the only ones in there. She said there is typically a line of people wrapping around the building to get in on a typical summer day. #perksofcovid There is still plenty of charter fishing from Fishtown. We talked to a captain yesterday. Maybe I’ll have some time to check “charter fishing on Lake Michigan” on my bucket list. My mouth waters at the thought of fresh-caught salmon and lake trout, two of my favorites.

I went to my campsite around 7:30. I only had the one night so it was a bit of a hassle to carry all of my stuff 350 yards into a walk-in site, set up camp and pull it back down this morning, but I’ll definitely try to stay there again. You get the benefits of a walk-in site with the amenities of a shower house and semi-close proximity to your car.

I’m sipping an iced mocha at one of my favorite coffee haunts in Frankfort MI called Petals and Perks. When I was here two summers ago, it was jammed with people. This morning, there were three of us inside and a banjo player picking some lovely tunes. I had to stop and sit awhile instead of hurrying off. Today, I’m meeting Abby again for a hike and hope to find a campsite somewhere close to Traverse City which is also unusually quiet right now. I’m going to take advantage of being a local Michigander this year and stay close to home. Besides, when home is as lovely as this why go anywhere else.

P.S. My little aging dog has become puppy-like again on this camping trip. It does my heart good to see here so excited. She struggles a bit with the heat (not Louisiana-heat) as does her Momma, but the cool nights and lake breezes are doing us both good.

More to come……..

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