82 year-old solo paddles Lake Superior

I had the privilege of meeting Bud, from Michigan, at the end of his 11 day solo paddle along the coast of Lake Superior. He didn’t paddle the coast of Lake Superior Provincial Park but he paddled the more remote section of Lake Superior from Hattie Cove (Pukaskwa National Park) to Michipicoten Bay (near Wawa). This is 100 miles/160 km of the most remote shoreline anywhere on the Great Lakes.

Did I mention that Bud is 82 years old?

Bud told me that both of his shoulders are messed-up. He can’t paddle like he did when he was 78 years old. So he has rigged up a sail for his Klepper kayak. He sails when he can and he paddles when he has to.

The first 3 days of his trip was into a head wind and he had to endure lots of rain. He would have given up the trip if he could – but he had no choice but to continue. The rain stopped and he started getting a wind that he could use for sailing. He prepared for a 14 day trip and completed the trip in 11 days.

I was told by a friend of Bud that his Klepper kayak wood frame was made in 1957. This is the fourth “skin” on the kayak.

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I was too late to take a picture of Bud and his kayak, but I did see some of his gear. He uses plastic pails with screw-on lids for some of his gear. I noticed that there were 2 pails nestled together – and the outer pail had a hole in the bottom. I asked Bud about the second pail. He said that he turns it upside down and uses it as a toilet seat (because at 82 years of age if one bends down you might not get back up). What a great idea!



Composting Toilet at Warp Bay

The new backcountry composting toilet at Warp Bay is now ready for use by campers at Warp Bay or by hikers on the Coastal Trail. This new composting toilet will break down human waste into fertilizer. Park management staff are experimenting with this composting toilet, and if it does the job, then it will reduce the need for park staff to keep moving the traditional P3 toilets when the holes become full. 

The composting toilet at Warp Bay is made by Clivus Multrum:

http://www.clivusmultrum.com/products_trailhead_design.shtml

The toilet was purchased by the Friends of Lake Superior Park. The toilet kit was too big for park staff to carry to the remote Warp Bay camping area, so it was moved to the site by helicopter.

The composting toilet is open for use but there is still some finishing work to be done. A solar panel will be placed on the roof and it will power a ventilation fan.  A waterless hand washing dispenser also needs to be installed.

 

Clivus Multrum composting toilet at Warp Bay camping area

Clivus Multrum composting toilet at Warp Bay camping area


Plastic pellets found on shore of Lake Superior

Small plastic pellets have been found along the shore of Lake Superior Provincial Park since August. We sent the information to one of the biologists at the Lake Superior Fisheries Management Unit in Sault Ste. Marie. Word came back that the probable source of these pellets was from a railway derailment on the north shore of Lake Superor (near Rossport) at the start of the year.

We have noticed the pellets along beaches in the Wawa, Terrace Bay and Schreiber areas along Lake Superior.

Resource management staff around the lake will monitor bird, fish and animal sightings to see if there is any adverse effect being caused by these pellets. We monitor the shoreline of the lake, near Wawa, daily and we have not seen dead or dying fish, birds or any other animals since August.

Maybe the path of these pellets can be used to show how things on the water surface travel around Lake Superior – just like the monitor ocean currents by following the contents of shipping containers as the float around the world.

Plastic Pellets

Plastic Pellets


First Concert in the Lobby of the Visitor Centre

Allison Lickley, with her father Dave Lickley, performed the first concert ever to be held in the lobby of the Lake Superior Provincial Park Visitor Centre. The ambience and the acoustics of the lobby, plus the lack of biting bugs, inspired the park staff to move the concert from the outdoor theatre to this indoor setting.

Over 80 park visitors enjoyed this precedent-setting concert.