Our Last Michigan Stop

Plus, A Close Call and

One More Visit With An Old Friend

We are approaching Iron Mountain, which is a town, not a mountain, by the way.

It has been a rainy, windy day, but not so much as to make driving difficult.  Suddenly, in front of me, from the opposite side of the road, a huge birch tree comes crashing down and falls all the way across the road, and then some!

It all seems to happen so quickly, but what I remember is that a big empty logging truck that was coming from the opposite direction, just made it under the descending tree without being hit.  The car in front of me swerved off the road on the grass beside the road, to get around the length of it, and in shock, I did the same.  I could see that the tree had completely uprooted itself.

I knew within a couple of minutes there was going to be a traffic jam because oncoming traffic had no way to get around the other side, and there was no way to see over the tree….so I was thinking, GO….get out of the way.  And nope, I didn’t get a picture.

My next thought was, if I’d left my last stop 10 seconds sooner, or driven a tiny bit faster, the 3 of us, JR and WS would be flattened on the road.  You never know.

You just never know.


Here’s a lovely birch tree near my camp, standing.  I hope it remains so.


Here is a closer view of it.  So beautiful…


Having survived the drive, we arrive in Iron Mountain at Summer Breeze Campground.


We stayed here a day or two on our way into Michigan.  I liked it so much that I reserved some time here as we leave the state, too.  The campground is as nice as the name sounds.


Our spot….beside a leaning birch tree.  Yikes.

We have an old friend in the area!  Syd was the manager ‘extraordinaire’ of the community I lived in near Monterey, California for most of 17 years.  He actually managed the place for 23 years and did a remarkable job.  However, he was born and raised near Iron Mountain and when he and his family decided it was time for a change they came back to the area.  That was around 2 years ago.

I get in touch with Syd via text about a week before we arrive here and he plans to come see us.  Joy always loved Syd and when he pulled up at our campsite she about came apart at the seams, as she greeted him.  That was one Joyful Joy!

It was really REALLY good to talk to Syd and find him content with his new home and job and life.  I can see this is his ‘home place’ and he’s happy to be back.  Seeing him peaceful gives me peace too.  He deserves this.


Our selfie.


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16 Responses to Our Last Michigan Stop

  1. Sharron says:

    So glad your Guardian Angel was along for the ride. Timing is everything!

  2. ulf kjellström says:

    Sounds and looks lovely😚

    Den 9 aug. 2017 02:44 skrev “Wandering Spirit” :

    > onewanderingspirit posted: “Plus, A Close Call and One More Visit With An > Old Friend We are approaching Iron Mountain, which is a town, not a > mountain, by the way. It has been a rainy, windy day, but not so much as to > make driving difficult. Suddenly, in front of me, from the op” >

  3. dawnkinster says:

    So glad that birch tree didn’t hit you guys!!! And that you were able to get around it before things got even worse. And glad, too, that you had time to visit with your friend…and that Joy remembered him and was happy to see him again. It was a good couple of days! I’ll miss seeing stories about Michigan as you move on, but it sure was fun following your travel through my state!

  4. cc and canine (now back in Oregon) says:

    I’m so glad that you were able to get around the fallen tree…. but it must have been scary seeing the tree come down like that! Did the tree have green leaves, or had it died previously? Chris and I are very wary of falling trees, since my cousin’s wife’s truck was hit on a country road in Texas. It was a nice sunny day, but the tree had been weakened by the previous drought. They called the jaws of life to get her out, and after 100 days in the hospital she finally passed…

    When we moved up here to Oregon our realtor gave us a strange look when we told him we wanted a house with sun, and away from large trees… Also, when we are looking for boondocking sites, (and in campgrounds also) we check for dead or dying trees. You can’t be too careful.

    I’m so relieved that you and the goldens are safe.

    • Hi Sharon,
      Yes the tree was totally green and full and leafy. I think in this case the ground was so saturated for so long, and there was some wind that day, so over it went.
      Trees…so beautiful…strong… seemingly sedate…they grow to be powerful beings. I love to be among them but yes, even they can be dangerous. I have a relative too, who passed away when a tree fell on him in the woods. The human body is actually a frail little organism and sometimes I think it’s amazing we manage physically as well as we do on this planet.

  5. Laura says:

    Wow! That tree story is a scary one. We also had a tree incident, just last weekend. Driving home (in the fast car) from SLO, we decided to take 25 from King City to Hollister to avoid the garlic fest traffic on 101. About 20 minutes before Pinnacles, we were flagged down by 2 carloads of fun teenagers who told us that a tree had just gone down, and it would be about an hour before Cal Fire could cut it up and clear it away. We parked in the shade, and ended up having a great time talking to them (one even offered me a bowl hahahaha ‘no thanks honey, not when I’m driving my fast car :)’.

    We had the same thought though, what if we had left just a few minutes later…
    hugs and glad you’re safe!

    • Oh my gosh Laura, trees are uprooting themselves all over the place! So when you did go by the scene, was it cleared, and how long did it take?
      At least you had some fun while waiting….but you guys are really good at that…having fun I mean!

  6. Sue Logan says:

    Iron Mountain was where my grandparents lived. My Gpa worked tgose iron mines as well as my uncles. They eventually moved to Hurley, WI where my dad and aunts and uncles were born. I was back there in ’79. I guess I’m going to plan another trip! Thanks for sharing my family’s old stomping grounds!

    • Yes Sue, it was really all about mining up here for a long time wasn’t it? Such beautiful country, and pretty much left alone except in July and August, because summers are short…but that’s part of what keeps it special.
      Sorry it took me so long to find this comment!

  7. So glad to hear that you and the fur babies avoided what could have been a very big mishap!! You did a great job of keeping your cool in a bad situation. Happy, safe travels to you!!

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