Spring Surprises 2018

So… how about this weather!?

Although this weekend was full of braving a boat ride across Lake Huron and staying out of the horrible weather as much as possible, last weekend was full of island hiking, and I decided to explore around Sugar Loaf and see everything else along the way:

The lighthouse passage as seen from the top of Fort Hill

 

The Mackinac Bridge at sunset
More lake ice at sunset

There are a few Mackinac Island landmarks that are fairly close to each other, so whenever I visit one, I try to visit all three… Fort Holmes, Sugar Loaf, and Arch Rock. Being a resident who lives downtown however, I don’t always realize how much more snow is in the middle of the island. I walked up Fort Hill, strolled behind Fort Mackinac, and proceeded to hike along one of the trails towards Sugar Loaf, when I quickly realized that none of these trails had been touched and were covered in a good half foot of  thick snow. But I had made it up that far so, why not keep going?

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Here you can see my lone footsteps in the snow, and a tree that had fallen into a very interesting spot!

At every intersection I tried to calculate how much further I had to go and kept telling myself that I was so close. Also, knowing that arriving at Sugar Loaf would be so worth it, I kept trudging along until finally, I was there!

It’s a pretty big rock! I know lots of people try to climb it, even though you aren’t supposed to… my older half sister once climbed it back in the 70s and she somehow got stuck! She had to get pulled out by the local firemen. Anyway, there’s a small path that you can walk around it, but I decided to rest my feet and just take pictures from the road.

I then realized that I chose to visit the landmark between Arch Rock and Fort Holmes… and not wanting to go one way just to backtrack the other way and trudge in more snow than I needed to, I decided that I would skip Arch Rock this time around and head towards Fort Holmes. So, I made my way up to Lookout Point (which I had to do very carefully up the snowy, slightly slippery stairs!) and took one final look at Sugar Loaf:

The road to Fort Holmes had a clear path and I was able to walk fairly normally the rest of the way! It also happened to be a beautiful, sunny day to take a clear pic:

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And one more picture to share… yesterday as I made a short trip to St. Ignace and back, there were two freight boats parked just outside the island, waiting out the crazy winds we’ve been having. Unfortunately I didn’t have a nice camera on me so this one I took with my phone, but I still think it’s worth the share! Considering that the winds picked up even more today, I’m guessing they’re still sitting out there… or if they moved, they didn’t get very far!

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I hope everyone is having better weather than we are, and here’s hoping that Spring actually decides to show up soon!

~ Heather

Night and Day

EditA post of night and day photos on Mackinac Island…

A few days ago, I decided to try my hand at night photography up at Arch Rock. After biking in near pitch black conditions, I managed to reach the Arch with my friend, Sara Wright, who is a professional photographer, and she shared some tips with me as we took photos. Unfortunately, the moon came out and lit up our photos too much! I thought I’d try editing the pics as dark as I could without losing the stars. All in all, we were outside for about an hour or so before we realized some kind of frozen fog was descending on us and it was time to go home. It was a fun first experience for me of taking pictures of the stars.
On our way back we somehow got sidetracked onto some new trails and ended up losing our way… I was a little embarrassed as I feel I should probably know the island better, but I just don’t go out past Sugar Loaf very much! That’s basically where we got lost, and found ourselves on a gravel road out near the airport. But we kept going, the road eventually meeting up with a main road and we made our way home. It was definitely an island adventure!

The next day, I packed up my bags and headed off the island to spend Easter with my parents and sister. Although it’s still cold, the views recently on sunnier days has been great! Especially when the lake is involved. I always forget how clear the water is this time of year… anyway, I had to take a few photos around the boat dock before heading off the island:

– Heather

A Mackinac Island Winter

Have I really gone three months without blogging? 

Yes. Yes, I have.

This winter hasn’t been anything extreme in any way to me. We didn’t get dumped with an amazing amount of snow, it didn’t really get too cold, nothing out of the ordinary happened… I guess I just ended up spending a lot of time enjoying Mackinac Island on my own. I find that I can get too cynical when I hear others say how in love they are with the island, how magical it is, how blessed they are. I’ve gotten too caught up in work and stress that I wouldn’t allow myself to enjoy the fact that all of statements above are completely true for me, too. 

So instead, I just tried to spend a little more time offline, focused more on photography, and tried to find the best about Mackinac Island and why it makes me feel blessed. I took a lot of great photos… and personally, I made sure to spend some of that time focusing on my health, enjoying the outdoors, finding more passion in my work, spending time with great company, and just living.

Now that’s not to say that I haven’t been posting any pictures online… they just haven’t been on my blog, and I’ve been uploading island photos on my Instagram account, @heathermay.xo (you might notice those pictures in the sidebar). 

Anyway, now that we’re in the month of April and all of the snow is gone, I decided not to let the remainder of my winter photos go to waste and will post them below. 

Below you will find winter photos from January through March of this year. 

Please enjoy 🙂

– Heather