The following is a true story, only the names have been changed to protect the guilty.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Man Trip 2013, Day 1

JJ
The Man Trip has been going on officially for four years now. Well before that I was heading up to the North Shore camping and exploring on a bi-weekly basis with my good friend Corky. For two years Corky and I explored as many hiking trails, ski trails, gravel roads, rivers, creeks, camping spots, and restaurants as we could.  These twice monthly trips from November to April, coincided with my wife's weekend master's program. She didn't want me around bothering her after a hard day of school, so I gladly took the opportunity to go camping. As the years went on and kids came into the big picture, the trips were reduced to one per winter if I was lucky. The once a year Man Trip came into being as a way to get in as much of the north shore as possible over an extended weekend.
Gitche Gumee

Urban exploration on the North Shore ?
I'm not sure my body could handle much more than an extended weekend at the pace that is kept. The adventures piggyback one after another, and usually finish after dark.  Arc Flash, JJ and myself started out on Friday morning with a snowshoe hike up Beaver River and back for about two hours. The snow was deep, the sun was out, but the wind was cold and stiff, it was good warm-up but we needed more.
       Further up the shore I had my sights set on navigating a river we tried last year. My original route through the woods at the upstream end, was too long and we ended up getting shut-down just as we reached it. This year we started near the mouth on Lake Superior, and laid the ground work for a "complete" adventure the next day when the rest of the crew would join us. Our day of recon was very rewarding and gave me some piece of mind in the way we would construct the events for the next day. I was also very excited for the rest of the gang to see this amazing river. 
A little free-climbing with the ice tools 
We're going to make everyone come down this tomorrow without tools , He He

After our recon mission was complete, it was time for some fat-biking. Back in 07' I brought my bike along as a last minute gear item. I rode a pristine, well packed, piece of river that year and the fat-bike has been a permanent fixture on the Man Trip ever since, ranking as my  #1 required piece of gear. Some years are better than others, as conditions dictate. From what we rode on Friday night, 2013 would prove to be the best yet.
Too steep to ride up

A.F.      The sun is beginning to set as he makes his way up river on perfect conditions
After the ride, and after dinner, we met up with Vandy and The Legend at Tettegouche State Park for a big campfire and some bull-shitting before going to sleep around 11pm. Friday night was cold, minus 10-15, but would be to our advantage in keeping everything nice and frozen for the next day.
I never get tired of seeing this

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