Just around 50 hours after we left for Mesick on Friday, we returned yesterday afternoon. Kind of nice, even though we had a radio, we basically left behind the news and sports world...News like that fat loser Ted Kennedy surviving his latest overeating and over drinking escapade...The Reds taking 2 in a row from Cleveland and eventually winning all 3 with the Tribe, and the Red Wings letting Dallas back in the Western Conference Finals of the NHL....once you get away for even a couple of days...the real world just doesn't seem all that great...sure you miss the showers, the family, the dog, the running water, the toilet...but you survive.....I think I could do at least 5 days of this type of camping....not sure I'd want to do more, unless I could go into town and grab a cabin or motel for a night..but it was again enjoyable this year.
Friday May 16, 2008
Clint and I left Celina at 12:30pm, heading north on US 127....rather than the stupid Yahoo route(340 miles) we would take 127 north to Clare, Michigan, then US 10 to Michigan 115 past Cadillac, to the forest area just south of Mesick...this route was just under 300 miles. Now the Jeep Wrangler is always an adventure, but 300 miles is not usually a problem....I have driven it back from as far away as Yuma and Las Vegas to Celina...both well over 2000 miles. Rick and the Boys had left about 9 AM from rural Auburn, Indiana....this would get them there about 1 PM...and let them set up camp and get an early start on the Mushroom hunting....the camp set-up worked for me and Clint, less work for us...the mushroom jump start worked for the Pearson clan.
Stopping in Paulding for a bite at the DQ and we continued to head north, the weather was sunny and cool but nice the entire trip. Very little traffic got us to the woods right at 6:30PM....Rick and the boys(his sons Clay and Guy, and a friend of Clay's Brett) had the camp set-up and already had run into a batch of 40 or so Morels...as it turns out, that would be the mother load for the weekend...PRH was gonna get shut out!
This was Clint's first trip north so we had to "treat" him to the usual first night efforts....this included Rick, me, and Clint drinking large amounts of Barley Brew, smoking a varied collection of good, but not overly expensive cigars, and BSing until all hours of the morning.....now this would not be rare for Clint..since he was one of the "Gang of 7" from Celina that lived in the College Inn at Ohio University during the 1975-1976 schools years...and Clint was among the biggest of the Hell raisers during that time anyway...nothing was gonna surprise him, as it turns out Clint had a better memory of our days than Rick or me...anyway a couple of cases of beer a baker's dozen cigars and about 8 hours of bull hockey later, it was 3:30 AM and we finally hit the lean-too...the 3 younger hunters slept in the tent, no doubt amazed or bored as Hell of our stories, which I'm sure they had heard a dozen or more times each.
Saturday May 17, 2008
Despite not hitting the sack until 3:30 0r 4, Rick was up and cleaning up the camp by 6:30...it had rained just a little during our BS session, it always rains at least some during the weekend, this year less than usual. I finally rolled out at 8 or so...hung-over but I had felt worse. Rick fixed the breakfast, cut potatoes, sausage, and scrambled eggs, all mixed together in a large pan...everybody but Rick enjoyed it....seems the cook was just a tad hung-over himself, and not really in the mood for food.....
After breakfast we headed up the hills, and there are hunderds of hills...between the night before crimes and my back, I was wondering if I could make it....I was still wondering about an hour later when Rick, Me, Brett, and Clay, became seperated from Clint and Guy...a handful of mushrooms(not one found by me) and 2 hours later we made it back to camp....not a sign of Clint or the youngest Pearson.
That was enough for me for a few hours...Rick and the other boys headed back into the woods, I would "guard" the camp, food, and beer...this was 1PM and still no sign of Clint or Guy.
Tomorrow------The Return of the Lost!
photos(as always, click to enlarge)-left to right, top to bottom: Saturday morning breakfast before we mixed it together...eggs, sausage, and potatoes, all mixed together in one massive heart attack filled treat. A look at the classic sweat shirt and logo that Rick's wife Toni made up for all of us....nice touch that we had a chance to "fashion" for the camera. The Celina High School gang...Rick Class of 68, Clint, the youngster, Class of 71, and the old-timer, me, the Class of 67. Rick with the boys...Clay far left, buddy Brett on Rick's left, and Guy, the youngest Pearson, on the far right. The boys showing off the Morel Hunt Sweat Shirts...the trail heading up towards the many hills and valleys of the south of Mesick woods....and hanging around the campfire.
More Photos Tomorrow-----------