July 20th Thursday Day 40 Update - Holland, MI

Tom here.   Thunderstorms rolled in this morning followed by SW winds…   decided to stay here an extra day and wait for the 10-20 Northeasterly tomorrow to help with the push to Mike Glasser’s place in Glen.  Thanks Frits for the post about the 38 mile free ride to Grand Haven from Stony Lake…   It was great staying at the Kwant’s and having a rest day.   

Grand Haven campground was literally a parking lot with some patches of sand for $32 and glad to have it.   The coastline is wooded dunes around here, but very built up… the only opportunity to camp is at the State Parks which are oriented to RVs.  The portages have been interesting thru and over sand dunes…  Glad I borrowed Krys’ lasso lock so I don’t have to drag my kayak too far.  The portages are a big part of my mornings and then my evenings…  

Wednesday I paddled from Grand Haven to Holland State Park and am now at a nice campsite in a wooded area on the Lake Macatawa (?) about a 1.5  mile paddle from the harbor entrance…  I paddled 21.7 miles into a 5-10 mph sw wind and averaged about 3.6 mph.  I discovered a new technique to use when the winds are on and off…   yesterday there were breezes (maybe 10-12 mph and then nothing or 5-10 mph…) To keep up my progress I would paddle fast whenever the wind died and then slow my pace when the wind gusted in my face…  so I would do 4-4.5 mph with light winds and 3.3 - 3.6 when the wind was in my face… kind of like changing gears on a bike… same effort, different speed… no sense killing yourself when going into the wind…  Wednesday did seem harder than my 38.5 miles the day before with the 5-10 mph north wind push.   

Frits, I stopped at Rosy Mounds dunes nature preserve…  really beautiful with lots of info on dunes and dune vegetation and formation cycles…  

I heard that there was a search for a kayaker a couple days ago near the Ludington harbor entrance supposedly a woman called the coast guard about a kayaker who appeared to be in trouble and they did their “grid” search.  I wonder if it was the kayaker I passed at Manistee National Forest who was heading from Traverse City to New Orleans.  Hopefully he is stealth camping somewhere and not missing at sea. 

Peggy is meeting me at Glasser’s in Glen tomorrow which I think I will use as a base camp until I get to Mullin’s near New Buffalo…  there are no conveniently spaced state parks so I will try to have Peggy meet me 1/2 way between Glen and New Buffalo on Saturday and then continue to Mullins on Sunday if the weather cooperates.  If not, I will be there on Monday. 

I am not going to kill myself paddling into the wind if more of these 20 mph SW winds pop up…  I will try to time things so that I can do my last segment from Whiting to LPBC on Saturday 7/29…    

I miss the serenity of the UP and the “tip of the mitt”…  I can almost feel the frenetic Chicago pace influencing the people vacationing up here…  most are from the Grand Rapids area but definitely a faster pace happening…  lots of jet skis zipping by and water skiers and other boaters…  I am starting to resent the fumes and noise after all the pristine air and quiet further north.  Water quality is still way better on the Michigan side than the Wisconsin side and the sea gull problems in Wisconsin cities don’t seem to be here.  

Holland is a lovely city…  I rented a bike and rode the 6 miles or so to the library and downtown area…  bikes sure go faster than sea kayaks…  :-)       

I am starting to plug in waypoints from the Wisconsin side of the lake to see what is west of me… right now, it is Racine.  I am going to pay close attention as I get further south to see what is across the lake from my Rogers Park residence…  if it is a house I will have to stop in and let them know that they live across the lake from me…  :-)  

My body is holding up with the help of Ibuprofen…  hands are stiff but OK with most of the cuts and blisters healed now that I have been using the hand cream I bought in Northport courtesy of my ride from Nancy Thornton…  My feet are also holding up although a couple of my toes are numb from the pressure on the foot pegs… need to keep a light pressure on the pegs just like the loose grip on the paddle… easier said than done…  slight soreness in the elbows and shoulders, but nothing serious….  

It has been a great adventure so far…    

Hope to see lots of you for that Whiting/LPBC segment!  

Tom  

 

One Response to “July 20th Thursday Day 40 Update - Holland, MI”

  1. Steve VanderWoude Says:

    Tom,
    Enjoyed meeting you at Holland State Park. Thank you for the tour of your kayak, looked so smooth in the water as you departed.
    Hope you had an uneventful trip to Glenn. You mentioned that you have met alot of interesting people as you circumnavigated the lake, would be interesting to hear about them.

    http://cgi.ebay.com/Mansfield-Canoe-by-Stowe-Tubbs-Canoe-Co_W0QQitemZ330006041584QQcmdZViewItem

    The above address a picture of the canoe, was made by the Tubbs Company.

    Take Care

    Steve