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.


Thursday, January 7, 2010

Sections of Southern Michigan in Winter

Battle Creek Underground Railroad Statue
T-man by theBattle Creek Underground Railroad Statue (photo by T-man)

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a guest post by Todd T-Man Mcmahon

I really needed to go on a hike. I’ve spent the last few months going to College during the day and then working at night. Don’t get me wrong, I’m very thankful for having my job back, but this schedule was wearing me down. I needed to get into the outdoors.

puncheon at Fort Custer Cemetery
puncheon in Fort Custer Cemetery (photo by Larry Pio)
I drove over to Battle Creek, Michigan where Ron Sootman of the Chief Noonday Chapter spotted me at the Kellogg Biological Station on Tuesday morning December 29. I hiked through KBS, the Kellogg Experiment Forest, the town of Augusta and Fort Custer National Cemetery on my first day of hiking. The Fort Custer National Cemetery section was different than I expected. I traveled through the woods and wetlands on the backside of the property, and traveled nowhere near the actual gravesites. I met up with Larry Pio who was doing some trail maintenance and Ron Sootman hiked in to meet me.

On Wednesday, Ron Sootman wanted to hike in Hillsdale County, so we started out at the Lake Baw Beese Recreation Area near the City of Hillsdale. We followed a railroad grade down to the town of Osseo. Then we hiked through the Lost Nation State Game Area, ending up at the Pittsford Road Trailhead. The Lost Nation State Game Area has some nice little lakes and creeks that the trail travels by. But, there are also some big hills to climb also.

On Thursday, December 31, Ron and I started at the Pittsford Road Trailhead and headed south. The NCT is a road walk here. We passed many farms and barren farm fields. The Milestone of the day was making down to the Territorial Road, which is the border of Michigan and Ohio. At that point I stepped into Ohio for the first time. We ended our hike in the cute little rural town of Waldron, Michigan. I enjoyed hiking with Ron Sootman. It was great getting to know him.

On New Year’s Day I was hiking by myself again. I started near Fort Custer National Cemetery, where I had left off on Tuesday. I traveled down River Road and connected with the Battle Creek Linear Park. The Linear Park is a paved multi-use trail that goes through the heart of Battle Creek. Along the Kalamazoo River I traveled over 5 miles into Downtown Battle Creek. I hiked by the headquarters of the Kellogg Cereal Company and the Cereal City Museum. But the most inspirational thing I hiked by was the Underground Railroad Statue. It is an excellent statue depicting slaves on their way to freedom.

After going through downtown, I hiked northeast along the Battle Creek River. I ended the hike on New Year’s Day at the Emmet Street Bridge in the suburb of Verona Park. Just a few blocks away from the bridge, I found the Idol Hour Bar & Grill where I had supper. When I was eating, I noticed a winter storm warning was being forecast on the television. I figured that it was time for me to head back to Wisconsin. But I had a great time hiking in Southern Michigan.

Todd McMahon

This segment is on NCTA map MI-02

See Chief Noonday Chapter of the NCTA

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