Labor Day 2007 Mackinac Bridge Walk

50th Anniversary for the Mackinac Bridge.

10th longest suspension bridge in the world.

Sunday I left Dimondale Sunday afternoon and drove to the Big Bear Lake State Forest Campground. Set up the tent, sat on the tailgate and ate some peanuts. Went to bed, or more precisely, went to ground about 10 pm. I got up at 2 am to see the Last Quarter Moon over the Pleiades star cluster.

Monday I got up around 6 am and it was still a little too dark to pack up the tent. I slept another hour then got up. The lake was smooth as glass and I heard a loon in the distance. I packed the tent and left the camp site by 8 am. I started driving towards the bridge and went through a fog bank and saw a fogbow. It was the first fogbow I ever saw.

9:00 am By 9:00 am, I hit the traffic jam. I was almost to Mackinaw City and the traffic on I-75 came to a stop. I crept along slowly. Most of the traffic was getting off at Mackinaw City. I was heading to St Ignace across the bridge.

10:00 am I finally made it across the bridge by car. The line of cars, trucks and buses was moving real slow. The usual 2 south bound lanes were switched to two way traffic. The usual northbound lanes were used for south bound walking. It took a while to find a place to park. I was about a mile from the start to the bridge.

10:37 am I made it to the starting line. Looking ahead, I saw they were switching the traffic pattern to one lane of southbound walkers, two lanes of southbound cars and one lane of northbound cars. This meant I wouldn't be able to walk over the open grate bridge deck. The two center lanes of the bridge are see-through. It's a long way down. I had to walk on the asphalt paved outer lane of the bridge.

I looked up towards the top of the first tower and saw the Moon.

The Bridge was built by American Bridge, a divistion of United States Steel. When I lived near Pittsburgh, I lived in Leetsdale, one town down the Ohio river from Ambridge. Ambridge, PA was the home of American Bridge. The town of Ambridge was named after the bridge company. How about that.

Noon The finish line. Everyone was there from Uncle Sam to Jesus Saves (read: Hay-suse Sav-eys).

12:30 pm I found the line for the buses back to St Ignace. I inadvertently cut-in line saving two hours from the wait. It was kind of a weaselly thing to do. I felt a little guilt for cutting-in and lying.

2:00 pm I finally made it to the buses. After an hour and a half wait, I felt a little less guilty, I saved two hours of standing in line. As the bus pulled away from the loading area, I looked at the people waiting and thought, "So long suckers". ( Just kidding, I still felt bad about line cutting. But not bad enough to get off the bus!)

3:00 pm The bus finally got back to the starting area and now it was a long walk back to my truck. I drove east through the U.P. and ate a chilly dog and Frito pie in Hessel, MI for lunch. Then drove to DeTour Village and took a ferry to Drummond Island.

6:10 pm I caught the 6:10 ferry back to DeTour Village. The ferry had to steer around a big lake freighter coming down from Lake Superior. It looked as big as the Edmond Fitzgerald.

7:00 pm Back to the bridge and on my way home.

11:00 pm (ish)Home