“There is no bad weather, only inappropriate clothing.”
-Sir Ranulph Fiennes
It’s been awhile since I’ve posted anything. I’ve been busy finishing up my second Master’s Degree. I’m hoping now to get back into blogging.
Today it rained almost the entire day. I’ve always found the rain to be so refreshing, so cleansing, so other-worldly. It’s the same with foggy days, as though at any moment, one might find themselves leaving this world and entering another.
I’ve always loved the outdoors. As a child, I spent the seasons outside regardless of the weather. Sure, there were times when it was too cold, or storming too much to be outside, but whenever possible, we went out. I love the quote I posted at the top of this post, about how there is no bad weather, only inappropriate clothing. I find this to be very true in almost all kinds of weather, except maybe for super hot days when the only clothing that might work would be considered inappropriate, or during severe storms, when it is just not safe to be out. But for the most part, the great outdoors can be enjoyed in all sorts of weather.
So today, despite, no, because it was a rainy day, I headed out to a nature place near us to enjoy a hike. Grass River Natural Area is a beautiful place not too far from home. When I realized it was going to rain most of the day today, I knew I had to find the time to get out for a walk in the rain. I wanted, needed to walk in the refreshing rain.
Arriving at Grass River, it was rainy at a steady rate but not pouring.
If you’ve never been to Grass River Natural Area, it’s a beautiful nature preserve in the heart of Antrim county in Northern Lower Michigan. Now, I realize there is a whole debate about whether or not it is Northern Michigan if you are below the bridge, but we are north of everything except the few towns that exist between us and the trip the Mighty Mackinac Bridge that takes you to the Upper Peninsula. So while we may not be the far north of Michigan, we are “up north” for most people in Michigan.
This area is one of the most beautiful places you’ll find. Between Torch Lake, Deadman’s Hill, Grass River Natural area, and so many other amazing places, there is so much to do outside. During my trip to Grass River, I headed for the boardwalk trails. The trails with boardwalk on them are some of my favorite to visit!
A note of caution, the boardwalk trails can be very slippery when it rains, especially the older ones, so if you do head out, be careful!
Despite the danger of slipping, I find the boardwalk to be amazing in the rain! Good footwear helps to keep your feet steady, but it does get pretty slick even then. It is such a beautiful walk though. A few photos from my journey:
I also stopped by one of the river overlooks to take some video. By the time I got to the Grass River Dock, it was pouring too hard to have equipment safely out, so I headed back, but this video is near the entrance to one of the boardwalk trails.
Another of my favorite quotes is:
“Its the not the Destination, It’s the journey.”
This quote is credited to Ralph Waldo Emerson, although there has been debate about whether or not he actually said it. Either way, I find this to be so true! I had no particular destination in mind today, other than getting safely back to my car, but it was about the journey. And what a journey it was!
Along my journey, I took quite a few photos. A few more:
As I finished up my walk, I was damp despite wearing rain gear, but I really didn’t care. My camera equipment and binoculars were still dry, and my heart was full. I know many people who would rather stay indoors on a rainy day, but not me. Not with the right clothing at least.
Sometimes the best journeys come in the most unexpected of places. Sometimes worrying about what’s happening around us keeps us from finding our true destination.
Heading back to the parking lot, I had to stop for a moment and just enjoy the rain and the wind through the trees. It was powerful, but peaceful all at the same time.
By the time I got near the parking lot, it was raining harder, but I was in no rush. This was a journey I never wanted to end. But like all adventures, they must come to an end, leaving us ready for the next one, and stronger as we face whatever is around the next bend.