Route: From Leelanau (State Park, MI) to Pinconning (County Park, MI), 240 miles
I decided to take it easy this day. A key to this was a shorter route. After some studying of the map (yes, I did have a map with me), I decided to shave 50 miles off of the route by turning east right after Manistee.
The first stop was for breakfast at a little café called Stone House Bread & Café in Leland. There were probably 12-15 people there when I arrived, half inside and half outside sitting at the small tables. I guess this place was offering free Internet access since everyone inside had a laptop.
MI 22 is a biker’s dream. Well, for those of us who usually rides between corn fields and could see the horizon looking down the road, any road, a road with turns is a dream. On this scale, MI 22 was a dream come true. There were countless hills and turns. Somewhere around Empire the road became dense with foliage from hardwood trees.
There were little stores along the road where you could buy fresh cherry, strawberries, and blueberries. After passing one little store after another for an hour or two I decided to stop and try some berries. I bought a pint of blueberries. Yes, they had a different taste. Long forgotten.
Pinconning was the first modern campground in three days. Although Bathing Wipes by No-Rinse were a big help, shower was in order. Showers were a 3-4 minute walk from my site. There was no one at the comfort house at this hour, so I found the first available, quickly undressed, positioned myself under the showerhead, and started looking for a faucet. There was none. I looked at each wall again. There was no faucet. However, one of the walls had a switch with a narrow hole. After closer examination I figured out that I needed to deposit 25c and then turn the switch. I, of course, didn’t have any change on me.
It was dinner time. Since the park was really close to the city, I just rode to the first place serving food. It happened to be a small deli with a cute sign below the counter - “Unattended children will be given an espresso and a puppy.”
There was another bike two sites from mine. Steve, the owner of the bike, started from Orlando, traveled to northern Minnesota, and was on his way back home. He was a seasoned traveler – a large tent, a little stove, a pot, and a chair. He liked to travel with comfort.
It rained at night, but stopped before dawn. The tent was still wet when I packed it.