Sometimes I think planning the vacation is almost as much fun as actually being on vacation. I have a 2-inch, 3-ring binder full of my research for this trip, in such detail that I’m embarrassed to say what I’ve amassed so far. 1,400 miles around, with 40 different towns/cities to stop in over 3 weeks (plus an extra weekend) leaves a lot of details on the itinerary that I don’t want to forget between now and then. My biggest concern is the money – will I have enough? – and what will I do to cut corners when and if I find that my savings does not total my estimated cost. Camp? Eat microwaved Chef Boyardee for dinner? Sleep in the car? Drink – GODFORBID!! – water instead of pop?
I also have the weather to be concerned with. When last we did this, it was the beginning of October and in two weeks we saw every weather extreme possible in the Midwest. It was 70º in Munising when we left and climbed to the hot and humid 80s for a few days until we departed Bessemer, MI for Ashland, WI. Then it rained. And rained and rained and rained, with hurricane force winds and dramatic (and a bit scary) flooding all over northern Wisconsin. Many of the attractions were closed because the streets were FEET underwater and trails were washed away in the woods leading to waterfalls. On the plus side, Amnicon Falls and Twin Falls were flowing faster and more violently than ever before and we got to see the incredible sight of these flooded and dangerous falls at their peaks. By Duluth it was snowing and terribly windy, but that also helped bring out the eagles who soared over the city for us to gawk at. The North Shore saw some warming and it was finally in the 50s again by the time we hit Thunder Bay, ON. It got warmer and warmer as we rounded the lake, and in Wawa, ON, it was 80º again. We had The Soo to ourselves in mid-October, with beautiful nights in the upper 60s and Paradise was indeed a paradise as things cooled back off to 60s and 70s. By the time we were back in Munising, it was in the 50s and the colors had changed all the leaves, finally greeting us with normal fall weather and scenery.
This time, we’re going in August, and though the days wil be a little longer and the weather wil be a little more temperate, I also know it can reach very uncomfortable temperatures with the heat and humidity. Many of the places we’ll be going won’t even have air conditioning. If it’s a hot summer, the bugs will be killers. It’s difficult to plan a very outdoor trip having no idea if it will be in the 50s or 100s, which, if I had a choice, I’d prefer the 50s.
But it’s all still so much fun to plan. Next weekend I hope to start calling around to make reservations for our trip at the US motels we’ll hit along the way. THAT will be wonderful, not only to have reservations made, but to know what the prices will be so I can better budget.
Vacations aren’t supposed to be this much work, are they? 6 years ago