Silver Creek Campsite
December 13, 2016
It’s my final full moon of the year and -14 windchill. A snowshoe hare pokes its little nose into my tent wondering why I’m such an idiot to be out there. I don’t know, snowshoe hare, I just don’t know.
October 9, 2015
2015: In the past two months I have started a new job, bought a house, and adopted cats. I’ve had no time to play. This hike is the first time I feel allowed to enjoy living on the North Shore.
May 6, 2016
Something is on fire. The smoke is so thick that my eyes hurt. With no way of knowing what is on fire, I make an escape plan to get out of the site if the fire gets closer. Later I learn that the fire was nowhere near me.
January 23, 2016
It’s my first full moon camp out. I don’t leave home until it’s already dusk because there’s no need to stay out there longer than necessary. I break trail to Ferguson and set up camp in a snowpile. It’s cold and I read about a man missing from a ski resort that likely got run over by equipment. Cheery.
McCarthy Creek Campsite
April 4, 2017
July 12, 2018
May 17, 2019
2017: I almost tear up on this section because it’s a piece of trail I’ve been trying to find. I worked on building this section a decade ago: I remember the giant hunting treehouse, the grassy McCarthy Creek, and parking on the Old Drummond.
Big Bend Campsite
May 26, 2016
I’m not entirely sure I have any business camping here on a weeknight, but here I am. I couldn’t be happier.
Fox Farm Pond Campsite
February 22, 2016
I hike up the spur trail in the dark and set up my camp in the dark. I stick my candle in a snowbank and watch its light reflect on the snow, a thousand colors. I drink red wine from a water bottle and listen to coyotes or wolves. It’s very cold, but I am happy.
Sucker River Campsite
April 14, 2017
It’s a weekend so I share this campsite. I’ve never been here before so I invent a loop with the North Shore State Trail. Tomorrow I will take the NSST back to my car at Normanna.
Heron Pond Campsite
October 24, 2016
2016: I’m delighted with the campsite’s layout and view of the pond. I wish for a moose sighting but content myself with beavers.
Lone Tree Campsite
July 26, 2016
For the first time in my SHT experience, I hear a bear snuffling in the woods outside my tent. It never ventures into the campsite proper, so I drift off. It’s an uneventful sharing of space.
White Pine Campsite
March 30, 2017
It’s not backpacking season yet but I’m out here anyway even though I shouldn’t be.
Bald Eagle Campsite
June 23, 2017 with Elliott
We make a deal: Elliott comes backpacking with me for a night and I go garage saling with him the following morning. We end up at the garage sale of an SHT campsite volunteer and we buy his old tent.
Red River Valley Campsite
July 21, 2017
August 14, 2019
2017: It’s the bridge-build weekend and I camp at Red River to guard thousands of dollars of tools and materials. There’s a big storm tonight; the sky is black. Suddenly there’s a noise like a freight train barreling through the woods. Oh my God, is it a tornado? Oh, it is a freight train.