We caught up on some laundry this morning. I pack enough to clothe a small country but Jake was soon going to be out of underwear and socks.
After we got the laundry done we decided to do a rafting trip on the Sturgeon River. We did the same trip two years ago & had a blast.
The Sturgeon River is the fastest flowing river in the lower peninsula of Michigan. It’s not very deep, the scenery is gorgeous and you don’t have to do much paddling except for steering clear of log jams and low hanging branches.
We left out of Indian River at a place called Big Bear Adventures. They offer kayak, canoe, raft and tube trips of varying lengths. We chose the 2 hour raft trip.

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Geared up, ready for our shuttle ride to the launch.

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Jake fitted with his paddle and life jacket.

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While Matt parked the Old Gray Goose at the finishing point, Jake and I boarded the shuttle where Jake learned a very important lesson: being first in line is only a good thing for recess and lunch, not on a rafting excursion when you get stuck in the back row of an Econoline 15 passenger van, with no air, wearing a rental life jacket that smells like a billy goat. And bless his heart, our shuttle driver meant well but between needing assistance to load the rafts and pulling out in front of a Hungry Howie pizza delivery driver, he concerned us a little.

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Waiting to launch behind the 317 people crammed in our van shuttle.

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They told us to put our best paddler/steerer in back. Matt got out voted.

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The first part of the trip was a little bit of an adjustment trying to get used to how to steer the boat. For those who know me, they know how calm, cool and collected I was as we crashed into a couple of log jams with flesh eating critters waiting to prey on us. After one crash:
(This was after the screaming subsided. Mine. And Matt’s telling me to shut up)
Jake: Do you think there’s alligator gar in this river?
Me: (very satisfied with myself because I know alligator gar like warmer climates & I google these kind of things) Nope. No alligator gar here.
Matt: No. No alligator gar. The only fish with teeth in this river are Northern Pike.
And that’s when I quit dangling my foot in the water.

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We came around one bend in the river & three bikini clad girls on tubes were resting on a sand bar. They called out to Matt “Hey how’s your trip been?” Apparently that distracted Matt a tad because he steers us into a group of low branches where a rather large, low one knocks Matt flat on his back. He has his head and shoulders in the water, feet in the boat. I thought for sure it was man overboard but in some flexible, ninja like move I have never seen him do, he uses his legs and abs to flip himself back in the boat. Seriously Jackie Chan would have been impressed. I know Jake and I were. And I think those girls were too after the laughing stopped. As we floated on by Jake finally says “Wow dad. Your back made an obtuse angle. A very big obtuse angle”. We are all hoping Matt can walk in the morning. We need him to fetch drinks and kill spiders and stuff.

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It was just a beautiful day with perfect weather and gorgeous scenery.

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Some friends we met yesterday.

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Starting to near the take out point.

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We made it!

We went back to the 211 last night for dinner. Matt was really wanting to try their pizza. (I know Matt & pizza, who would have thought?)

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It was very good. Hand made dough with all local ingredients. Very good.

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After dinner we checked out Onaway State Park. It’s on Black Lake but across the lake from where we are staying.

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Black Lake, Onaway State Park

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Jake picked a wildflower for me last night & told me to put it in my hair. I took a picture and discovered him in the background. I think he misses his dog.

Almost bedtime…night.

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