Sunday, March 15, 2009

Charlie's 2008 Odyssey V - Day in Hell (Michigan)

Charlie's Email of April 17th:
I made it to Hell about 7:30 PM yesterday.  A lot of trees and man-made obstacles with low foot and road bridges (Portage Creek). I had to line around, wade, drag, push, pull, shove, pole, paddle and portage around 40-50 different places counting the ones I just crashed through.  I stopped counting at 40 and there were more after that. If the water had not been so high as it was there would have been more. It got better the further upstream I went.

There was a covered bridge across the creek a mile or so downstream of Hell. 
The creek (I would call it more of a small river than creek) is clear with a sand and gravel bottom with a fast current getting faster the closer you get to Hell. The valley the creek flows thru has few houses with marshy areas and high banks and hills. Its a beautiful little stream and very scenic in places. There were places that said "Camp here!" I believe this creek has changed the least of any part of the trip so far since Hugh Heward passed through 218 years ago.

I saw a few goose nests with eggs; deer, turkey, and one possum that was crossing over the road the same place I was portaging around a double tile (more like a chute) that was plugged with wood on one side and the other with the current so fast I didn't try lining through it.
My message of April 19th:

Met Charlie today at the Dam Site Inn in Hell. Joined by sundry canoeists, family, creekside land owners and the News Editor of the Stockbridge Town Crier. Charlie is going to get some ink. As promised, I popped for pizza and libations. We toasted Verlen and Charlie. Verlen passed through here 18 years ago. Charlie and Doug McDougall head for the portage Monday morning.

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