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Mount Arvon, Highest Point in Michigan, August 2008

I had heard many times over and over again how tricky the highpoint of Michigan can be.  My friends Rich made a winter attempt and had to snow shoe forever to reach the summit.  Another climber I met out west at Kings Peak told me about similar difficulties.  He claimed it was his hardest high point ever due to the fact he climbed it through several feet of snow without snowshoes.  The internet is filled with stories of difficulty navigating the logging roads that lead near the summit.  Thank goodness I have my GPS.  It will make this easy.  My exuberant confidence was but a blinder to the difficulty that lay ahead.

 To sum it up, my GPS took me down the wrong mining road toward the summit.  The entire is a spider web of old mining roads.  Many of which are completely impassible.  Some are filled with 6’ weeds, while others have their entrance intentionally blocked by large boulders and logs.  This was certainly not the terrain for an Audi A6.   Time and time again, I found the dirt road I should be on eroded to level of championship off road course.  So I would pick another and hope for the best.  At times, I wasn’t even on a road included in the GPS map database.  I felt a bit like a rat trapped in a maze.

Eventually I found my way quite close to summit according to the map.  Unfortunately the road deteriorated to the point it would be a challenge even for a high powered ATV.   To make things worse Mount Arvon spray painted vertically on a near by tree.  No decisions left to be made, I would be on foot from here on out.  I hoped it wasn’t too far, and that I could find a better road to drive back down on.  I would get only one of those wishes.

After a short hike I was on the summit, 1,979 feet above sea level.  I felt a bit of a special bond on this highpoint since I was born in 1979 and had such a fun adventure navigating my way through the dense woods to get here.  After a few quick pictures, I was on my way.  I had to flee the mosquitoes and try and find camp before sunset.

I stopped for a refreshing victory swim in Lake Superior at the state park nearest the highpoint, then drove west to find a campground for the night.  I stopped to take pictures of the sunset and ate dinner at Green’s park.  I camped out just a little way down the road and worked on this trip report under the brilliant star filled sky.  I wish the night sky was this impressive at my house back home.

Continued on the Minnesota Highpoint page...

 

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Map of US HighPoints
KEY: States: Green - summited, Yellow - attempted, White - Not visited
Dots: Green - State Lowpoint, Red - State Highpoint

 

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©2008 Kyle E. Hoelscher. All rights reserved.

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