Saturday, May 21, 2016

Author/Illustrator Challenges for the Blind

Whew! Finally a break is coming, just over the horizon. With the past few months of school visits, conferences of teachers, librarians, agents, editor, authors, and illustrators, I will once again be back at the drawing board. And with this comes a fun, recent challenge. A forgotten voide challenge all of us in the kid lit biz should take time to discover.

The missing voice, the forgotten voice? The group not usually portrayed, the blind and visually impaired. It was not until I was introduced to Donna Posont, a blind naturalist from UM Dearborn did I ever think or spend time or even know of the challenges of the blind.

Donna praised my Holly Wild books saying that they worked well with her blind kids that she works with. Nature and the blind go hand-in-hand. Something us "sight challenged" people, she jokes, take for granted. Right now, as I write this, I hear a myriad of birds, layers of songs and calls. The breeze is bringing in the pungent odor of blooming autumn olive. A truck drives up the dirt road, banging and clanging, teeth-jarringly over potholes, a beagle whimpers, and my fingers tap these keys. Kind of easy to describe these observations in word. But art? Illustration?

Book 1--now in Braille!
Sensory writing. Sensory art. For years, I have worked in mixed media for my fine art, mixing color, texture, text, and natural ephemera. With my books, I use those ingredients for covers or inside illustration. But how does an illustrator put work out for the blind?

Donna wrote me a few months ago requesting the last two books in the Holly Wild series to be recorded. The first two were recorded years back by the Michigan Blind and Talking Book Library. As time flies, and business and busyness prevails, we never contacted them to do the last two. So of course, we hopped on that request immediately. She wants the books to be required reading for her students! Because there were not enough copies to go around, Donna had Bamboozled on Beaver Island (book 1) printed in braille for her next event. The text, no illustrations.

I got to see this nifty braille version in person (5 copies) when I was recently invited by Donna for the Big Day of Birding, to celebrate Urban Birding at Gallup Park in Ann Arbor. Donna, or "Butterfly", as she is known by the kids was leading our group out onto the park trails to bird by ear.

Donna Posont, blind naturalist, helps build confidence in blind kids.
Warm, funny, gentle , she truly is "Butterfly" to the kids.
The event sponsored by the National Federation of the Blind MI, UM Dearborn Environmental Interpretive Center, and the MI Parents of Children with Visual Impairments (MVPI), and others put on a super event. There were even beautiful, colorful textural, raised art and braille t-shirts from Cindi Dail of Artrageous.com.

But the real fun was in sharing stories, crafting, and birding with blind and VIP of all ages. We shared the love of birds and learning and nature, despite the chilly, rainy, windy spring weather that was dished to us!

It was a challenge for me to put together a craft for the energetic and enthusiastic group, known as the Michigan Birdbrains. I had made a bird art piece from trash a few years ago, and do you think I could find it now that I needed it?

My urban bird art of found items
So I created another using trash around home. Next, I hit the internet in search of tips for crafts for the blind. I do mixed media, so it should be easy--and it was. Printing, stamping, drawing with scented markers and crayons. Tissue paper and fiber textures to be glued down with glue sticks on birds and nests that I cut out of heavy paper. My craft was a hit since we couldn't get out onto the trail with wind and rain.

After the craft it was time for the trail and bird count. Now, Marie and I are taking part in the Michigan Frog & Toad Survey this year and are "frogging by ear" at night to count species as a part of the state's citizen scientist program. So "birding by ear" is the same, counting species from songs present. And holy cats, how many songs are twirling around out there and competing with our human made noise?! After spending time with the group I was inspired to learn more songs. Some of these kids really know their birds and Donna is a font of knowledge.

I was so impressed with the group and what Donna is doing for Detroit kids that I am including them all in my next book to get all kids thinking about using their senses out on the trail as well as in the yard. I hope to get out to another of their events to work with them again this summer.

But when I do, I will raise the large illustrations with Puffy paint on my laminated large chapter copy of Bamboozled on Beaver Island so kids can actually feel Holly and her freckles, the "creepy arm" of the story, and other scenes (Cindi's shirts got me thinking!). It's all about remembering the other people out there who maybe cannot fully engage or enjoy our writing or illustrating. A simple thing as raised art, textural art for speaking events is pretty cool and a creative challenge!

List of textures to include:  sandpaper, bubble wrap, cheesecloth or burlap, buttons, yarns and twine, gel medium paste to build up, handmade papers, glitter, feathers, fur scraps, fringe, to name a few. Think, TOUCH! Think inclusive. :)

Shelf fungus on a fallen tree offers textural time.

Listening to bird songs to record.

Mute swan on her next by the trail.


Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Spring Conference Mind

Trading Post Turtles

Jen in the Devil's Kitchen checking out his pots & pans.
The Library of Michigan's Rural and Small Library Conference 2016 on Mackinac Island came just three days after I returned from the SCBWI Wild,Wild Midwest conference in Naperville, IN.  I went from busy city driving to leisurely horses and bikes! Here on Mackinac Island, 550 librarians spilled in from small towns, villages, and rural areas in Michigan. And to hit the island the first week of May's spring weather, was a special treat. 

As an invited speaker for the conference, I was to stay in the Grand Hotel, another treat! (The last time I was on that portch was when they were filming "Somewhere in Time" and Christopher Reeve brushed past my mother and me on his was to a set in the dining room.) 


Sun-warmed cedar perfume fills the air.

The first thing that Jen, my lovely daughter and assistant and I did, was rent bikes. The clear, cool, breezy weather was perfect for a trip around the island--after we checked in and registered at the conference. A huge box lunch sent us on our way with treats for later as we explored the flora and fauna. Cedars and firs smelled divine! White-crowned sparrows in tiny groups, gulls, and a loon zipped past us.

We biked the whole island perimeter and were glad to make it to Arch Rock near the last leg of the journey.

Arch Rock from the bike path. Breccia limestone wonder.
Heading toward town I showed Jen the beaver lodge I had been watching from conferences past. I was glad to see the beaver family had worked on their home before the winter. The lodge is in front of the Mission Point Resort, just off the path by the golf course.

Mission Point Beaver lodge still intact after a long winter.

After dinner we went for a walk and stretch our legs in the gardens and labyrinth in front of the Grand before heading to our room. And what a room! The Madison suite was huge. Jen loved the colors, peach, light sea foam turquoise and antique furniture. There is a portrait of Dolly who watched our every move which had us looking up ghost stories of hauntings at the Grand Hotel.

The Grand Hotel gardens and fountain. Daffodils out now.
The next morning was conference presentation day! Coffee was nice in the quiet, then it was a mad dash to get gear, books, laptop, and things off to their places. What a fast-paced few days.

Morning view from our Madison Suite in the Grand.

I delivered a fun program on Books, Bugs, & Budget to wonderful librarians on how they can come to the rescue of kids getting outdoors. Great interest, questions, enthusiasm made it wonderful. The time flew by. And so did Jen and I! We had a taxi to catch after our amazing Grand Hotel lunch to get to the Mackinac Island School to chat with kids.

Forty-five kids in K-6th grade.

Bikes of all sizes and colors! What fun!
After the rush of the conference it was neat to hang out with year-round resident island kids. They learned about me and I learned about them. Their life of bikes, adventures, fudge, and no cars were their favorite things. When school let out kids went home and Jen and I went over to spend the night with the math/science teacher, Liz Burt and her family.

There was a hike in the oak/beech forest to see blooming hepatica and trillium not quite ready to open. But the real fun was yet to be had. Snake hunting! A popular pasttime for the kids, they head to Old Burners (remains of the island incinerator) to flip the metal sheets there. Mom, Liz had a bag for the snake booty! We found a few cool artifacts from years past. Glass bottles that will never break down, old shoes, lots of horse bones, a small pot, and coyote scat. I did find a large rubber horse shoe and Liz packed the few things up to send home to inspire me for a Mackinac Island Holly Wild adventure.

Seven garter snakes collected and released. 
Snake-hunting at "Ol Burners" 


The next morning, Jen and I took the taxi carriage to town for breakfast at Sea Biscuit. We were served by yet another friendly islander, John. Hickory-smoked molasses bacon, stuffed banana bread french toast, and a "mamosa" (mango) morning treat with coffee sent us off the island feeling pretty good about our visit. This was by far, the most enjoyable island visit I ever had. A great time to learn and share stories. 

Morning island departure view from our early taxi.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

A Questpedition for a Literary Author/Illustrator-in-Residence

Quester on a questpedition.
How does one bottle the vast and varied experiences of an artist-in-residence? My mind keeps going back to the early autumn days on the shores of Martin Lake. Lichen-covered hill, spicy sweet fern, and jack pine breezes. Eagles and large-mouth bass! Aurora borealis and wolf howl in the early morning. Just a few things that will keep my spirit charged through the months ahead.

Looking high and low. Lichen beauties.
I began my U.P. questpedition at the end of July while I was in Marquette exhibiting my books at the Outback Art Fair. There I met Dr. Nancy Seminoff of the Literacy Legacy Fund Michigan (LLF of MI) www.literacylegacyfund.org. An educator and past dean at Northern Michigan University, Dr. Nancy and I discussed creative ways to promote literacy in Michigan. Since I had been artist-in-residence for both state and national parks in Michigan, we both decided to launch a new endeavor, an author/artist-in-residence in the Upper Peninsula. In fact, Dr. Nancy dubbed my stay, my A.I.R. as the Questpedition for Story, based on the title of my latest Holly Wild book and book that was donated to the libraries and kids of K.I. Sawyer.

The quester--hero--must find
the magic potion or cure, to
bring back to the people.
I would stay two weeks at Dr. Nancy's cottage outside of Marquette to create art and poetry for a new book project of mine on wolves. I would in trade for the stay present a program for children in K.I. Sawyer, speak with teachers at Northern Michigan University in Marquette, and fit in a book signing event at Falling Rocks Cafe & Bookstore in Munising. In addition to all of that, I will create a collaged, handmade book for LLF of MI to use as for fundraising at a later date. Whew! That's good, because I am BOOKED (heheh) right now, illustrating for a few clients.

K.I. Sawyer Community Center fun.
So with kayak, guitar, laptop, art supplies, and BOOKS in tow, the Big Blue Bear Track Bookmobile van and I made the trek--questpedition--north. Off to write, draw, and read. Silence. Solitude. Scenery. Yes, all that, but also a blend of meeting and talking with amazing kids, teens, tweens, librarians, counter help, musicians, food service people, teachers, bookstore owners, museum volunteers, and not just listening to, but truly hearing their stories, packing them away into my mind.

Showing the kids "the BIG picture"
of artist-in-residences past.
It is said, and I find it true, that during the creative process one needs to get up and get away and allow images and words to incubate. So I incubated often by bass fishing and kayaking. Taking drives into Marquette (pronounced by U.P. born folk as "market") to the Children's Museum, a quick side-trip to see Grand Island off Sand Point on Lake Superior, and a visit to the Laughing Whitefish Falls--a truly spectacular sight. Then it was back to "studio" time.

The words and art came at first were planned. But they were too predictable. Then the more I got out and away, images and words seemed to fall into place. The land spoke to me. The wind, ever constant (the cottage is named "Breezy Point"). Then somewhere between the flashing red darter dragonflies and sun-bathing painted turtles, I heard my voice. My voice filled the pages of my newly purchased and redesigned sketchbook. This would be a different book, an art book, a book for teens, adults. A story, a meditation--on life--through the eyes of a wolf and young girl. A kind of writing I had not done in a long, long time. It was exciting. The words and art became fresh and I was excited how they fell onto the pages.

How does one bottle the experiences of an artist-in-residence questpedition? They engage all of their senses and record in word and picture--then share it. A sketchbook becomes the magic, elixir, potion that heals and inspires. This treasure that the quester finds and brings back to the village, cures the people and themselves in the act of sharing the gift. So I share my bit of U.P. autumn A.I.R.with you.
Grand Island view from Sand Point.

Laughing Whitefish Falls. Can you hear the whitefish? 

Morning Rainbow from the deck!

Dinner awaits.
Evening autumnal meal overlooking Martin Lake.

Falling Rock Cafe & Books is an amazing place to spend the day! 

The collaged cover of my sketchbook "dummy".
Ephemera from my surroundings, poetry, drawings.

Tracks at the top of Laughing Whitefish Falls
Then two weeks later, in the wee hours of the morning, the day I was to leave my A.I.R., I heard the low, moaning, mournful cry of a wolf outside the cottage window.

The crowning experience, the seal of a mission accomplished. Oh, to bottle the rainbow colors, the flashing aurora, the crunch of dry lichen, the splash of bass leaping among lily pad, the whoosh of wings from the bald eagle overhead, the plop of turtles sliding off the abandoned beaver lodge at my approach. 

But that sound, that wolf song. Ah, to bottle that wildness of spirit. This--this is what I must try to capture not only in my art book but the art book to be donated to the LLF. A gathering of elements to inspire writing and literacy in Michigan. My work has begun, my questpedition is complete.
Last paddle on the lake in front of the cottage.

Sketch of Place. Field notes of my visit.

"My LLF of Michigan artist-in-residency was different than the others I've participated in, as the two weeks spent was a balance of public events where I listened and shared stories with people and the peaceful solitude of nature. During this time, I was pleased to complete a story "dummy", poetry, art, design, and layout for my graphic novel all of which was totally inspired by my A.I.R. stay." Lori Taylor 

Monday, June 1, 2015

A Kool Pre-K to Kindergarten Book Kickstarter Kick-off!





I grew up in Clarkston, MI. The woods and pond were my playground. My siblings and I had an awesome gravel pit to jump and black muck pond to play in.
Later, as my kids grew up in Goodrich, we planted and played in the clay
Now my grandkids visit me in Pinckney. Here, we romp on five acres of sandy soil. 
Michigan has such diverse habitat! And if there is just one thing kids love--it's DIRT. The substrate of where they live and play. It becomes part of them--literally! I say this as I watched my youngest 2 1/2 half year-old granddaughter joyfully toss dirt into the air and have it rain down her shirt--before rolling in the grass.


Harkens to mine and my children's
childhood. Whether rural Clarkston
 or suburbs of Goodrich, kids
"dig treasure"--garbage!
Rocks, sticks, water. These are kid's first outdoor play things. It keeps them creative, healthy, and soaking up vitamin D. This is the focus of my new picture book, HOLLY WILD: The Young GeEK's Guide to Getting Outside. Get kids out and into the dirt and into the backyard for wild "kid time!"


The visible neighborhood in back
offers a safe feeling, yet wild enough
for play! (My brother and I had a
yellow tent growing up in Pontiac.)

"Kid time" is a time for kids to be themselves, a time for exploring with no "helicopter parents" hovering to direct or misdirect nature activities.

As the author of "How to Raise a Wild Child: The Art and Science of Falling in Love with Nature", Scott D. Sampson says, "let  them (kids) learn and engage like the playful scientists they were born to be...Throughout these early childhood years,  the primary goal is wonder, and more wonder." (A fabulous book BTW!)
In "The Young GeEK's Guide to Getting Outside", the book covers a day of unstructured, wandering play--which means learning through sensory investigation. The very things I present about in classroom visits.


How many of you growing up did this?
How many of you still do?
In the book, our young GeEKs (Geo-Explorer Kids) in training are being gently guided by Holly Wild and her Team on an Alphabet Adventure into the wild BACKYARD! Although not an adult, Holly has learned some things in her 10 1/2 years, and imparts cool stuff and smart stuff to kids. Things like: outdoor observation skills, what NOT to touch, and what to poke, and then ends the young cousins' day in a tent for a nap. (Looks like the energetic youngsters were keeping Holly and her Team, Tierra and Sierra, on the run).
Fun reader prompts and games inside.
Just like in the mid-grade Holly Wild
books. Sweet stuff for lil GeEKs to do!
Clarkston folk will
recognize this sign. Tee-hee!
When I began the book I figured it was an ABC of outdoor things Holly Wild would encourage. But as I began illustrating it the "story" unfolded quite magically( as usual)! My childhood popped up, my own children's "back forty" adventures squeaked out, and even my forays into our wild five- acre Pinckney yard here with my granddaughter oozed out between the cracks! 


Make time for Tent Time!
I began to research my memories and new discoveries (see Scott Sampson's book title above). Holly Wild has her adventures throughout "exotic" places and parks in Michigan. Beaver Island, Porcupine Mountains, Sleeping Bear Dunes (notice they are all animal names!), which I find is right on target for kids her age. But what kids the age of 2-6, the recipients of my new book, require is a more kinder, gentler landscape to roam. Of course! Their own backyard!

So the book became more personal as the cry for getting kids into the dirt and into nature becomes louder (I've long been a follower of Richard Louv). And for good reason. Dirt and nature time is vital--let me repeat--VITAL for kid's health, school work, happiness--their well-being! Check out the Children & Nature page on Facebook or hop over to their site for more info. http://www.childrenandnature.org/ Yay! I was on the right path.

This rhyming ABC book is full-color, hard cover, 36 page, 9 x 11" landscape book (the "original laptop!") is perfect for a quick nighttime or naptime read (PreK-Kindergarten ages). Of course, the prompts and games further the experience and keeps the book fresh each time it's read. 

We here at Bear Track Press are proud of this piece as it promotes the environmental and educational values that goes into all of our works. And even better, it will be printed right here in the USA! What better time to release this Kickstarter for this project during June, Great Outdoors Month. http://www.greatoutdoorsmonth.org/



And if you believe in all of this good outdoor stuff, just watch the video below and visit the Kickstarter site. You'll find all kinds of goodies and free things that go along with the book and awesome rewards to inspire you to inspire families and kids to GET UP and GET OUT! But you have to act soon because we have 28 more days in our campaign!

Let's all GROW great kids! Thanks!
Lori

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/136394808/holly-wild-the-young-geeks-guide-to-getting-outsid?ref=video

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Finally, HOT TIMES Have Ended!

Finally, after 15 years, my story, HOT TIMES IN THE BIG CREEK WOOD, will be published!

(back cover) Bear Track Press 2015
I had rewritten and illustrated this story for the past 15 years. Time and time again, I was never happy with its outcome. Why? It wasn't ready to be born. I had to let the flames inside me go out. Extinguish strife and let the rebuilding happen.

It's never easy to write a children's book, and with the oodles of books out there most would think it an easy thing to do. Books and stories are personal. Sometimes they can sting. This story hit home. My home.

The story, Hot Times in the Big Creek Wood, is about my father. A good, hard-working, a caring man, passionate, yet hard-headed in opinion and hot-tempered. When crossed by anyone, like a misbehaving, inconsiderate neighbor--fur will fly, fences will be built.

My siblings and I were many years ago, party to my father's plan of building a "feudal fence" between his northern Michigan wooded property and that of his neighbor to the south. Both men were in their seventies and should have behaved as adults. But it was what it was and soon became a full-blown feud.

After the fence went up I watched and wondered about this situation. I noticed that my dad's behavior and characteristics fit those of the beaver--a diligent, non-stop builder, and those of his neighbor, well--a lumbering bear. It was after driving past the neighbor one day that I saw him sitting under an apple tree, eating apples in the shade as happy as a clam. He looked like a bear! Wearing bib overalls, bushy graying sideburns and all. I had my story characters. It rolled off my pencil like water!
Shanty-Bob Bear

Boomtown Jack, the beaver.

The place where my dad lived had been part of the Great Fire of 1881 and I researched that story online. I found fabulous and horrifying accounts of the raging blaze that ate Michigan. One particular event that was recorded was when a survivor of the blaze hopped into a lake and stood watching the fire all night standing next to another person in the water. All night, the two stood, silently as their homes were destroyed. In the morning, the man turned to his neighbor as the smoke cleared. The neighbor he stood next to all night in  the lake was, a black bear!

The story, Hot Times, centers around the feud between the neighbors, beaver and bear, where the beaver builds a fence so he won't have to watch his neighbor "shake his shimmy". Revenge becomes both neighbors' answers to the feud. They inadvertently bring hot times to the neighbor and if the bickering wasn't enough to affect the other's' lives, then the next thing that happened changes life for everyone.

I wanted to take and make this story a learning experience, for others and for me. My father never lived to see it published. Fences were built. Today I tore them down. He and I rarely saw eye to eye, nature and outdoor work was our connection. I added little phrases he used to say in the story. Hidden things that only my siblings and I would know. "Daylight in the swamp". "Arbeit macht das Leben suess!" (German for 'Work makes life sweet!') and "a dollar, 2.98". These little gentle touches helped tear my own fence down. I would like to say that the neighborly feud and my father's and my feud had had happy endings, but that just never happened. So I made it happen here.

At the end of the book I added how two people, different as night and day, can get along. I gave the story a positive spin and even added educational material. The beaver as a keystone species and the bear and his contribution to the environment help keep the neighborhood healthy and happy. It's all about seeing the value in the other and being tolerant.

The book originally intended to be a picture book is one of my graphic readers. The story although intense, has funny and sweet moments, with some cool information at the end on the Great Fire 1881 and Clara Barton, the founder of the American Red Cross. I am glad to finally put this file and all the versions of dummies and paintings away. It is done and turned out better than what would've come out ten years ago or three!

At long last, there is peace in the Big Creek Wood. After the fire, new green shoots sprout and grow, life continues, homes are repaired. And this is good for the Big Creek Wood.


Sunday, August 24, 2014

Yooper Summer Book Tour 2014

Ranger III ready for Isle Royale!
I have been on the road all summer! Well, I should say I've been a boat, an island, the trail, a seaplane dock, another boat, another island, more trails, a greenstone ridge, basalt outcroppings, boulders--and the road.

Edison Fishery outbuilding.
This would have been
fun to stay in!
My Michigan Summer Home was wherever I hung my hat--and hiking sticks. During my Yooper stay I stayed in hotels, camped in the Bear Track Studios "book mobile" van, and in our camper! It was divine.

My summer show season began July 7th at Mackinac Island and ended August 17th in Copper Harbor.

After my July Michigan Reading Association Summer Lit conference program stint on Mackinac Island and my week-long Sleeping Bear Dunes show/granddaughter vaca gig it was almost Yooper Time! I hurried home and prepped the van and packed the "book mobile" for my month-long Yooper Book Tour and my Trip of a Lifetime, Isle Royale, a trip I have been wanting to take for 24 years!

Da Yooper Lummakka.
Loves beer, eating tourist kids and polka--
not necessarily in that order.
My Yooper Tour included:  Marquette, Isle Royale, the Porcupine Mountains, and Copper and Eagle Harbors. Wow! I want to insert here, that we live in such a beautiful and amazing state full of incredible people, wildlife and history. Let me repeat, we live in such a beautiful and amazing state full of incredible people, wildlife and history! For me, it was a walk-about, a dreamtime and so much to take in a few short weeks! I returned home with my "yooper summer elixir" to store away to become future books, word and art--shared story.
Laughing Loon! Lol. Blah-lalalala!
I got to visit with a cabin-calling bull moose, a curious otter family, laughing loons, the grandparents of the famed Isle Royale Wolf and Moose Study. I enjoyed beach picnies, rock hunting and PASTIES. It was a gathering time of images, ideas, and memories for incubating and beginning winter projects.
Otters! Photo by Lisa Jennings

 Nature conservancy picnic with Lisa and Marie.
Toni's pasty--Yooper style with ketchup!





Research time in
Rolf and Candy Peterson's
backyard 















I swapped stories with sight-seeing veterans, enthusiastic camping parents, budding writers and I even met four retired teachers camping in the Porkies (whom I helped get their dinner fire going and showed them tips on how to make the next one!) So much fun, so many stories! So many things to do and places to see! I was never truly alone on any of these trails from Isle Royale to Copper Harbor. Everyone was out soaking in the summer.
Jeff and Josh on "moose watch"

On Isle Royale with my sister and her husband and son we often called out "trail appreciation!". This meant time for a moment to sink into the beauty of our surroundings and snap a photo. Ah! But wait!

On the down side of the trail I have to mention this one thing because we all want to keep our state pristine,"Where are your manners, people?!" I was sadly a witness to an entire family "camping" as they stripped a live cherry tree of its lower green, leafy branches for their fire next to their tent. Really people? Not cut, but snapped, bent and twisted the branches. Ow! Ouch! And NO! What the what?? HELLO! Outdoors etiquette is lacking in our parks and wild places. And we're not just talking littering. This etiquette--or lack of--was a topic of discussion that I had with a photographer in Copper Harbor.

He mentioned that the U.P. is becoming spoiled due to heavy tourism and a few rude dudes. These "campers" and "photographers" (trying to get "perfect" shots of wild areas) use everything from bow saws to chainsaws to alter the shrubs and trees or get firewood without having to leave camp. Again, wow! Wow!
Bear glyph on rock face--with other etchings.

And in Copper Harbor, where 1,000 year old petroglyphs can be found, boulders were etched with initials and graffiti. Word on the trail, is that attempts to protect the Viking ship glyph were futile as people ripped off the plexi cover, "just because they could". So please help spread the word, "Leave NO TRACE" should be stressed and followed up by "Leave NO DAMAGE". There is so much to see and do up here and it's just good manners and nice to keep it clean for the next Yooper traveler. Don't make me sick da Yooper Lummakka on ya!

Now with that, here are more Superior reasons why! And get up and out to the U.P. soon!

Gitche Gumee  Copper Country Wonderland
Pine song and sun
Wild Superior waves!
Top of the world! Lookout Louise, Isle Royale

Last Isle Royale hike with my sister Lisa, an awesome photographer.
Help promote "trail appreciation" and "Leave no Trace". 
Enjoy, explore, protect :) or else...


Lisa being attacked by Squatch outside of
Muldoon's Pasty, Fudge & Gift Shop, Munising.