Monday, July 10, 2006

Twelve hours between camps

We got home about 5 p.m. Sunday, and Robert and I were up bright and EXCRUTIATINGLY early Monday morning to get him to Boy Scout camp.

Andrew was already there. He convinced his boss at Wendy's to take him off the schedule for this week, so he would have a chance to work on the merit badges he needs to become an Eagle Scout. He stayed with friends Friday and Saturday, and went up to the Tall Pine Council's Camp Tapico Sunday morning.
Robert did his laundry, picked up a tent and mess kit, and we were off to the North Country.

I had never been to Camp Tapico. It's west of Gaylord in the hill country of Kalkaska County. The Michigan Department of Transportation has put up a sign on M-72 pointing to it; I never would have found the place otherwise. It's even more isolated than the Lake Huron Area Council's Paul Bunyan Scout Reservation.
Camp Tapico is billed as 1,200 acres of woodlands and a nice lake. Grass Lake does seem like a nice inland lake, and the camp sites are spread out in the woods around it.
The place, however, seems a little tired and ramshackle. That's sad. What I found somewhat disconcerting was the fact that Tall Pines serves the Flint area, and I don't remember seeing any Scouts of color. I did spot numerous Scouts wearing troop fleeces from suburban units, but admittedly, I was there only a short period.

After checking in, Robert and I went back to the camp site, past the "poison ivy" sign by the trading post (how welcoming!) around the lake.
The site is a 15-minute walk from the main camp, through the swamp (every Scout camp MUST have a swamp) around the lake and back into the woods. I didn't get to see Andrew; I assume he already was working on Environmental Science Merit Badge.
And everybody's home on Saturday.

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