Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Mauthe Lake

Day 23 (8/5/09)
As I stated in my “Onion River Project Blog” our camping trip to Mauthe Lake was our first tent camping trip in over twenty years. In our attempt to “do it all” we started with a twenty plus mile bike ride. Now on the level blacktop trails of home that doesn’t seem like much but on the gravel, hilly trails of the moraines it was quite another story. Let’s just say that it made sleeping on the hard ground in a tent interesting. That being said, it was a beautiful ride. One of the trails we took went from Mauthe Lake to Long Lake, a distance of about six and a half miles one way. Along the way you cross over a couple of bridges and board walks. Because of the many changes in terrain there is also a vast catalog of vegetation. In the early part of the ride you are pretty much in low lying, swamp areas with lots of spiderworts cattails. As you start moving into higher, dryer ground there were entire fields of wildflowers. There was a great variety of Black-eyed Susan type flowers. At some point I will have to take a look at each. I didn’t realize until today that some are actually yellow coneflowers. Two of the most striking flowers were the orange butterfly weed and the purple Bee balms. In the higher elevations the forests take over and you bike through some nicely shaded areas. I highly recommend taking this bike trip if you enjoy natural beauty. Yes, we did have a chance to do some building. It would have been nice to have done more and there was plenty of opportunity but unfortunately time was a major factor. Back at camp we settled in rather quickly. Thanks to Eileen’s meticulous preparation, even after twenty years everything went smoothly. After the ride we made a quick supper and managed to squeeze in a quick Kayak outing before coming back to camp and enjoying a pleasant campfire. After a big day we decide to turn in early. Sadly, after so much exercise we found it hard to get comfortable on the hard ground. Our one change for next time will be a softer mattresses.

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