Notice: I've taken a part-time job, and it's definitely affecting my blogging time. I'll continue to add content here as often as possible. Pertinent guest posts are always welcome.


Saturday, December 13, 2008

Skiing at Bowman Lake

Bowman Lake
Bowman Lake is a small kettle hole
in the Manistee National Forest
by Joan H. Young

The Spirit of the Woods (SPW) North Country Trail Chapter enjoyed a ski/snowshoe outing at Bowman Lake today. Four people enjoyed the deep snow on a combination of the North Country Trail and Forest Service ski trails.

Bowman Lake trailhead parking lot is one of the few kept plowed in the winter by the Forest Service. The area is popular with local skiers, although the trails are not groomed. Bowman Lake is a small glacial kettle hole lake just a few yards off of the North Country Trail. Since the lake is not vehicle accessible it is a quiet spot, popular with backpackers and anglers.

There are four campsites with tent pads around the lake. The pads were installed in 2004 by the SPW Chapter and the Heckman family. The project was funded by a memorial in honor of Randall Heckman, a young man who loved hiking the trail.

Bowman Lake
crossing a small dry kettle
On this day, the snow was deep and unbroken except for an occasional deer that had passed ahead of us. We took turns breaking trail, and were considering taking a 2 mile loop. After an hour we were about half way around, and decided to take the easy way out and retrace our steps rather than continue to break new trail.

Some days everything just seems perfect. This was one of those days. The air was mild, light flakes of snow swirled through the woods. We walked just far enough to feel well-exercised, but not dead tired.

You should have been there! Of course you can make your own perfect North Country Trail adventure.

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