Stick Season 10/23/2012

She calls it “stick season,” this slow disrobing of summer, leaf by leaf, till the bores of tall trees rattle and scrape in the wind. – Eric Pinder

With the road trip occupying the blog for the last few days, it seems as though a lot of time has passed since we concentrated on Mackinac Island.   So tonight, I’m inviting you to come along with Bear and I as we walked for almost two hours on Sunday afternoon.  It was a beautiful day to be on Mackinac, and it seemed strange not to go to church that morning (Little Stone Church closed for the season last Sunday).  Ted took Maddie and walked her to town to pick up a newspaper, and Bear and I struck out in another direction.

I hadn’t been to the Annex in over a month, so I was anxious to see how the trees were looking in that area of the Island. Bear and I walked down Cadotte toward the Grand, then turned right on Algonquin just past the “caution” sign.  Algonquin runs behind the West Bluff cottages.

As we crested the first hill, I glanced at the path we sometimes take from Four Corners through the woods to Algonquin. It was literally covered in leaves now.

Walking down the back side of that hill brought us to the corrals where Teddie and McGuyver spend their summers . . .

. . . but both of them left the Island last week, and the corrals were empty. Either I’m going nuts or that is a new building (the yellow one) since the last time I was in this neck of the woods. Maybe they renovated an old shed that was there. Gotta ask Mary about that!

The “stick season” may be upon us, but even with some of the leaves already fallen . . .

. . . it seems the ones still clinging for life to the trees are putting their hearts and souls into making their last moments as beautiful as possible.

Bear, his nose always to the ground, seems to be finding it difficult to understand why there is less horse poop to taste test these days. I tell him it’s because there are fewer horses on the island now. He just keeps on looking though.

All of these are private corrals, and they’re all empty. Remove the horses, and you remove that earthy smell that lets you know it’s Mackinac. I miss the horses . . . and the smell.

At the end of Algonquin, we turned toward the lake. I stopped to frame a photo of the lighthouse between these two trees in one of the West Bluff cottage yards . . .

. . . then we went through the turn stile onto Pontiac Trail. Bear seemed to sense something different and came running back to me after he’d walked ahead. The bluff below Pontiac has been clear cut, something that is done every several years. It did take some getting used to, but just like the trees along Cadotte, before we know it the trees will be tall again.

The tree cutting (which opened up views of the stairs down to the water) does allow for exceptional views of the Grand now from along the trail.

At the end of Pontiac Trail, we made a sharp right, then a left onto Lake View Blvd.

We usually stay on Lake View until we reach Hubbard’s Annex, but on a whim we took a less traveled trail . . .

. . . and I found myself on a path I had never been on. Bear and I had a wonderful time wandering around back there – seeing a couple of houses, barns and stables we’d never seen before. It was amazing to find a spot on the island that was new to us!

It was later than I thought it was (we stopped to chat with some ladies who were staying at the Grand and needed directions), so we headed back home.

Every time I walk up this hill now I try to memorize this view of the condo so, during the winter, I can close my eyes and visualize it.

For the last week these trees down at the horse corral below the condo have been becoming brighter and brighter. I knew when I walked back Sunday afternoon, I wanted to photograph them and that splash of red the gate added. What I didn’t know was that a few horses had been turned into the corral a little before we arrived . . .

What a beautiful frame for these taxi horses . . .

. . . and the big Belgians who pull the drays.

Hope you enjoyed our little walk . . . it sure was nice having you along!

Note:  Jason arrives on Wednesday (Blair’s work schedule wouldn’t allow her to come this time), and he’ll be staying until Sunday.  He doesn’t know that means he gets to help us close the house, but I’m sure we’ll do some fun things also.  Jason is excited about attending the downtown costume party on Saturday night (he’s shipping his costume because it won’t fit in his luggage), and he’s talked me into going with him on the last Ghost Hunt of the season on Friday night.  WHAT am I thinking!?  Oh, by the way,  Jason is 40 – going on 9.

I’m going to take the rest of the week off and enjoy our son, who I haven’t seen in almost six months.  I’ll be back on Sunday evening with all the news and photos of his stay . . . and the costume party . . . and the ghost tour.  Hey!  “I don’t believe in no ghosts!”

25 thoughts on “Stick Season 10/23/2012

  1. Oh I’m looking forward to hearing about the ghost tour. I’ve not yet had a chance to catch it. In the meantime, enjoy your visit with Jason and have a marvelous time at the costume party!

  2. Oh lucky you…I’ve wanted to go on a ghost hunt everytime we’ve been there and still haven’t done it. Can’t wait to hear all about it..have a blast and enjoy your time with Jason! (Sorry Blair couldn’t be there). Enjoyed our walk and can remember each of those trails/paths, since we just went on them a few months ago..of course the trees weren’t as pretty as they are now. (Did you see the red barn?). 🙂

  3. We took almost that exact walk the last time we were up there. We just found that same path. I always thought it was a driveway for some reason. Funny that you just found it too. By the way – the red barn is on the back side of Pontiac Trail on Algonquin.

  4. Brenda,

    Wow! I really enjoyed that walk. Thanks for allowing me to walk along. I can’t believe you’re finding so much color on the Island at this late date.

    If you don’t mind, I’d like to tell you a ghost story, although it took place in the eastern Kentucky hills and not on the Island. Since it’s close to Hallowe’en, maybe I can get by with it: About sixteen or seventeen years ago my father-in-law asked me if I believed in ghosts. I told him that I didn’t. “Well,” he said, “when I was young, I was visiting some relatives in Kentucky. One evening I went to town and had a few drinks. Later that night I went back to the relatives. As I was walking up the hill to their house, a ghost appeared right in front of me. I told him to get out of my way. He didn’t move. I told him again, but he still wouldn’t move. I told him two or three times more, but to no avail, so I shot him five or six times. He still would not move, so I walked around him and went on up the hill to the house. The next morning I walked back down the hill. About halfway down, I found a tall white stump and that stump had five or six bullet holes in it.”

    I still don’t believe in ghosts.

    • No, Janet, we never dress up. I’m the least creative person in the world. We go down with a lot of other “oldies” and just take photos of everyone else.

  5. So glad Jason is going to get the opportunity to see you. He picked a gorgeous season. My mind walked step by step with you but had never seen that last section. It was one of the most beautiful walks of the year. I love that section of the island.

  6. Bear- This is your doggy buddy Bear from Iowa. When my owner’s took me to Mackinac this summer for the first time I got to met you and it was a thrill! My owner’s thought it would be a “great” idea to take me on a 2 hour walk and I was so tired that I took a 4 hour nap in the afternoon! UGH!

  7. I stayed at Mission Point last fall for a Society of Children’s Book Writer’s and Illustrator’s Conference. As I was preparing for bed people were following a guide on a haunted tour in the rainy evening . It was humid and very hot in my room. Seems they had already turned the heat on for the winter. Occasionally something would pound loudly on the wall above my bed, knocking the picture askew. I think it was from the steam heat…or something… 🙂
    My window was wide open to the drippy night and I was listening for the return of my roommate.
    I heard a gentleman say, “And right here!”– BELOW MY WINDOW!!!–“she saw a!”— I stuffed my fingers in my ears and yelled, “NANANANANAH!!!”
    There was no way I was going to stay awake all night long listening and looking for anything from the distant and spooky past. Later I heard that the MP buildings are considered very haunted places.
    So here’s to ear plugs and an eye mask–fabulous inventions! 🙂

  8. This is the season that I got to know Mackinac, and it’s still my favorite. Your pictures are gorgeous, and I’m so glad you shared it with us. Jason should be there by now, and I know you’re having such a good time! Truly cannot believe that it’s almost over for another year. . . .

  9. Bree,
    Just in case you need a Georgia “god-horse”, I have one that would love to have you “adopt” him! (Actually, I have three…but one’s a retired Plantation TWH).

    BTW, Victorian Christmas in Thomasville is coming up in December. You and Ted MUST come see it! A short drive from the ri-vah!

  10. Loved all your pics. Our family takes that same walk every August when we visit. Looks so beautiful this time of year. We would love to visit in the fall some time, but will have to wait until our kids get older (currently in 4th & 5th grade).

    I love your blog and am gonna really miss reading it over the winter. Enjoy your last days of the year on the island!

    • Hi Dave. Don’t say “goodbye” yet! I’m hoping to continue my Mackinac Island winter updates while we’re in Georgia this winter. More news on that coming later.

  11. This is awesome! We usually take 2 trips to the island each year…one with my daughters/wife and the other with the wife and our dog and we just walk the crap out of him!

  12. Bree, I just wanted to say how much I have enjoyed reading your blog again this summer. Mackinac Island is my very favorite place…anywhere! I haven’t been able to get up there the let two years and am missing it so! Thank you for sharing your summer there, I have enjoyed reading every adventure and have just loved looking at every picture of the island even more! Safe journey back to Georgia…..

  13. Thoroughly enjoyed “our little walk” and your pictures. We didn’t get to see how the trees looked in that area during our trip to the island last week. So beautiful! Enjoy your visit with Jason and your last few days on the island. Can’t wait to hear about the costume party and ghost tour.

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