Guess who’s coming to dinner? Pentwater is one of the Sarver’s favorite places on this shore & we are just a couple of hours drive away! Mary & Andy, Come on down!! Fun with the Fabulous Four again! Life is Good! And on the Carp front, we love the e-mails we get through the AGLCA. Other Loopers have suggested we call ourselves, Loopers Incarperated & petition the Corp of Engineers to open a “carpel tunnel” for our exit. A few Loopers have gotten through by contracting a tow company & paying $600 to be towed with no people aboard & all electrical systems & batteries disconnected. That sounds like “waterway robbery” to us. But so far, it’s the best of our choices.
So much fun to have the Sarvers on board, rain or shine and today we did get rain! After a lazy morning we drove over to Ludington for a tour, shopping & lunch. The light rain continued but we enjoyed our day anyway. Andy’s brother Brian and his family have a cottage here and we are all going over to cook hamburgers this evening. No progress on the Carp issue. Stranded Loopers made the CBS News broadcast in Chicago last night and we still have efforts being made on our behalf by AGLCA, Boats US, Waterway Guide, and others. We are still hoping for a better solution by the time we want to pass through the “carp zone”!
We had a great time last night a Chris & Brian Sarver’s cottage with all the family & friends that were there. Then this morning, Goodbye again! Mary & Andy took off before lunch headed back home! So glad they came, we always have such fun! Lake Michigan has kicked up her heels once again & it looks like it could be Monday before we leave Pentwater. Brad will take this opportunity to do 200 hour engine maintenance work tomorrow(which takes a half a day). There was a Wooden Boat Show down at the Pentwater Yacht Club so we wandered around town, had some great coffee from The VG Coffeehouse & shopped the sidewalk sales. It certainly feels like the end of summer here with temps only reaching around 60 degrees! Michigan Summer…..Brrrrrrrr! I think I’ll put some chili on the stove!
Praise the Lord the sunshine is back! The weather forecast for the next 4 days looks great for travel & Brad completed all the maintenance today. I think it was in one of the Wm F Buckley books that he referred to the 2 greatest thrills in boating. One being when you push away from the dock embarking on a cruise and the other being the moment when you have secured your vessel back to the dock. We are ready for both of those thrills again after enjoying Pentwater for 5 days. A walk to the beach in the sunshine this afternoon and dinner out! White Lake tomorrow.
A lovely morning cruise got us into White Lake around noon. The villages of White Hall & Montegue are separated by a short bridge over White River where it feeds into the lake. Bikes unloaded, we rode a long way on the scenic Hart-Montague Bicycle Trail, a linear state park that runs for 24 miles. There are 10,000 acres of asparagus in this area, making Oceana County the “Asparagus Capital of the World”! We saw the “World’s Largest Weathervane” in Montague’s Town Square & the unique 127 year old family owned Pitkin General Store in White Hall. Met a girl from Georgia who summers here since her retirement & Skip, at the Moxie Marine store, who finished the Loop in ’06 on his boat, Popeye! We are going to skip on down to Saugatuck tomorrow while we have this nice weather window!
The cool air over the warmer water created a little fog this morning, but we still got out by 7am. So this is how Lake Michigan is suppose to behave! Smoothest water I have ever seen. Not a ripple in the water to help you know what is sea & what is sky! Easy cruise to Saugatuck, past Grand Haven and “Big Red” the lighthouse on the point of the Holland channel. Up the Kalamazoo River (yes, there really is a Kalamazoo) to Saugatuck, it’s a precious little art colony and has been known as such since the late 19th century. On our bikes by 2pm, we rode the town from one end to the other and even visited Douglas, the neighboring village just a mile or so away. Cocktails at 5:30 and dinner at “wicks park bar & grille”. The owner, Bill Murphy, has Alabama ties & chef training from New Orleans! This is the first gumbo we have seen on a menu in a while, and it was GREAT!! Fabulous food and a great ambiance. Next stop, St Joseph/Benton Harbor on the St Joseph River! Life is Good!
Another perfect day for a cruise! Arrived Benton Harbor/St Josephs just after noon & took on 300 gallons of diesel to avoid higher prices in Chicago. Warmer today with high around 78. These two towns are separated by the narrow St Joe River & both have more industry than we have seen in the villages thus far. Because of that, their year round population is higher. Looks like they are working on boosting their tourism industry as well. We were pleasantly surprised how much we enjoyed our afternoon biking through the towns. I had planned to cook but there were so many restaurants to choose from. Couldn’t resist a little Greek so I picked up a Greek salad to go with our supper tonight.
Short ride, 30 miles, to Michigan City, Indiana. Tonight is our last night in Michigan.
What a beautiful state.
Nice ride to Michigan City, Indiana! Lake Michigan is a sweetheart when she wants to be. Washington Park is a nice big marina w/600 slips & located within an easy bike ride to an outlet center, the Lighthouse Museum, Zoo, Antique Car Museum, Blue Chip Casino & restaurants. Wish you were going to see pictures of ALL of that, but I dropped my camera & broke it. A nice local lady here at the marina volunteered to take us to get a new one & we took her up on her offer because I just couldn’t go to Chicago tomorrow without getting some shots of the skyline! Chicago, That’s My Kind Of Town!!!!
We not only left Michigan behind today, we also left the Eastern time zone. That’s a bonus hour for us today! I used mine learning my new camera, and of course, Brad did laundry! There are a number of Looper boats here including “Biddi & the Beast” & “Joanne Marie”. Some Loopers are waiting here to find out the update we are suppose to get tomorrow on the Carp situation to make a decision about what they want to do.