Jul 19-01

Past-E-Mail: Cam Notes - 2001: July: Jul 19-01
Golfing on Drummond Island    ...scroll down to share comments
photo by Thomas Simpson

Thomas Simpson on Thursday, July 19, 2001 - 07:10 am:


Yesterday I had about 10 emails asking me to send another picture, so you would tell the rest of the story (about Trout Lake). While golfing "The Rock" on Drummond Island, a deer came across the box in front of my dad, just as he was about to tee off.

Pasty.com really should cover the entire U.P.!

By Charlie at Pasty Central on Thursday, July 19, 2001 - 09:57 am:

Nice shot, Thomas. OK, back to our youthful explorers near Trout Lake...

Yesterday I mentioned how Steve and I finally figured out that his rusty old car had lost its gas tank. Here we were, out in the wilderness, a couple of teenagers (this was 32 years ago) on our way back from Bible camp. Our side trip through the woods and fields near Trout Lake was a bit bumpy. It had apparently caused the full gas tank to break loose and fall away... in the pasture somewhere back along the trail.

The tank was nowhere in sight.

"A car can travel quite a distance just on what's in the fuel line," Steve observed. Steve was one of the most resourceful 18-year olds I knew, one year my senior. He had rebuilt this old car himself. Years later, Hans Solo in Star Wars reminded me of Steve. And on this summer day in 1969 I was as clueless as Luke Skywalker.

"It must be 10 miles back to town," I groaned, as Steve started to rummage through his trunk. Soon he emerged with a shiny red gas can, and I followed him back around to open the hood.

He fumbled with one of the small hoses on the engine, yanked off the end and stuck it into the can. "Here... you sit up here and hold this. Let me try to start it, and we'll drive back to find the tank."

I crawled up next to the engine and took the can while Steve hopped in, said a prayer, and turned the key. (Steve was pretty wild in those days, but a couple of weeks at Gitche Gumee tend to make any guy a bit more spiritual). To my amazement, the car started right up. I clung to the hood as he eased backwards up the path. We rolled along for more than a mile before the tank came into view - resting upright on a grassy mound between the tire tracks, still full.

"The Lord provides!" said Steve, as he rescued me from my perch on the fender, and re-plugged the gas line. We walked around to the tank, brainstorming how to hook it back under the car. I sacrificed my leather belt to be used as straps, but Steve had nothing to cut it with. Though he had remembered to bring a spare gas can, he forgot his tool kit.

Stooping down to see the props Steve used to lift the tank into place, I said, "Lord, we need a knife."

The years haven't erased the memory of what happened next. It still gives me a chill. There in the dusty grass in front of me was an old hunting knife! Stunned, I picked it up and wondered what U.P. traveler in decades past had come this way and dropped it in this very spot, laying here all these years until we needed it. The handle was broken and the blade a bit rusty, but it was still usable.

After our shouts stopped echoing through the woods, we finished rigging up the gas tank and drove back into the village of Trout Lake, where a mechanic secured it for us, to continue the trip home downstate. You can well imagine we were a couple of amazed and thankful kids.

Years later, when I had kids of my own, I started telling them exciting tales of life in the U.P., some of them even true. In our family, these became a whole series known as "The Adventures of Crystal Dune". But that's another story.

By Candy, CA on Thursday, July 19, 2001 - 10:34 am:

Great story, Charlie! I think Trout Lake must be the "Bermuda Triangle" for the U.P. I've heard a number of auto-related horror stories that have taken place there, but none tops yours! Actually, now that I think of it, every incident relayed to me all served as some sort of spiritual growth lesson....coincidence? I think not. And thanks, Thomas, for the great eastern Yoop shots -- any chance of heading toward Tequahmenon?

By REL on Thursday, July 19, 2001 - 10:38 am:

Just where is Drummond Island? I'd like to play that course on my trip to the U.P. in August.

By Jon, MI on Thursday, July 19, 2001 - 11:59 am:

Good Story Charlie!

It just goes to show that the lord does work in mysterious ways!

By Dawn, Oregon on Thursday, July 19, 2001 - 12:10 pm:

Ooooh - Tequahmenon Falls is something I don't remember seeing on the cam. How 'bout it, Charlie? And while you're at it, Kitchitikippi (sp?) Spring would be great, too. We stopped there once or twice on our way to/from troll country visiting my grandparents. Really cool watching the fish through the glass bottomed raft.

By Carol - MI on Thursday, July 19, 2001 - 01:08 pm:

Thank you for telling this story of how God cares about every detail of our lives. . . it almost seems at times He "sits back" and waits for opportunities like this to prove His faithfulness and "wow" us into believing that nothing is too great or too small for Him!

By Marie, Oklahoma on Thursday, July 19, 2001 - 03:59 pm:

Thanks for the shot of Drummond Island. It's interesting to me to see how it is inhabited now as my relatives from Finland on my Mother's side (Sikkila) started out in America there and apparently it was too isolated and the living was too hard to survive so they moved west to the mines of Minnesota and forests of Watton.

By TBush, Royal Oak, MI on Thursday, July 19, 2001 - 04:21 pm:


Drummond Island is as far East as you can go in the Upper Peninsula. It is on Highway 134. If you are coming up I 75, you turn right on 134. The Les Cheneaux Islands are something to see on your way. Have a nice trip and enjoy.

By Marc Slis, offshore Norway, Barents Sea on Thursday, July 19, 2001 - 09:51 pm:

Anybody who knows of the Big Spring Dawn from Ca is talking about-visit it on a still, moonlit night. Looking through the glass bottom makes you feel as if your supsended in the air-very, very erie!
Also, I too recommend the Les Cheneaux chain mentioned by TBush. I was once shipwrecked on Marquette Island in the worst wind storm the straights has ever seen and was helped by a couple that summer there, given food, coffee and a radio to call the Coast Gaurd. If your still living out there-thanks for all your help!!

By CN, FW, IN on Friday, July 20, 2001 - 08:26 am:

Anyone going near Culhane Lake? A picture from there would be nice. My husband and I spend a few days there usually in the fall and I don't think we'll make it this year. The Pasy Cam is one of my first visits every morning. I appreciate all the beautiful scenes of my favorite UP. The pasties are terrific too!

By Wish I was dere in God's Country, but stuck in G.R. on Friday, July 20, 2001 - 08:44 am:

Charlie I love your stories as well as the pictures you post. Thanks so much for making my day - this is absolutely my favorite website to visit *and* your pasties are great too!

By hc on Friday, July 20, 2001 - 09:06 am:

make sure you visit around detour village when you go to drummomd island..you take the ferry from detour to get to drummomd.you will love the quietness and scenery.its just a nice vacation spot..

By Flo on Monday, November 10, 2003 - 08:03 pm:

Your story was very interesting. I have been going to Trout Lake for a little over 40 years now. My husbands family has owned property there for about 60 years. Where abouts is your folks place?

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