Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Petoskey Stones

Years ago I could go to the Petoskey State Park and find as many petoskey stones as I wanted.  One walk on the beach with Erik and Jim we pocketed 52 stones until we  just couldn't carry any more.  Sand and stones shift over the years and lately Hexagonaria Percarinata has been frustratingly elusive.  Until today!
 I found a spot  abundant with sand polished fossils and on closer inspection recognized the familiar hexagonal shape of the coral.  Digging down in the wet sand a little bit I uncovered several fist sized rocks with beautiful examples of coral.  I brought a few home and threw several more out beyond the sand bar for later discovery by another person another day.
350 million year old coral fossils

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Blahg, Blahg, Blahg...

I got an email today from neoWORX announcing:

That's 14 countries.  177 random visitors from all over.  When I have the time I check out random blogs from all over ("next blog" feature).  If something catches my eye I leave a comment.  Ok, you people out there, I challenge you to leave a comment!  Even if it's just to say I should stop writing such boring stuff.  : )

Saturday, March 27, 2010

A Different Kind of Spring Break

In my adult life I've had some fantastic times on spring break.  I've taken the boys to see Grandma and Granpa Hansen in Tucson, Arizona many, many times.  We love the Sonoran desert and the warm weather was a welcome change.  Since Erik and Jim have lived on their own my spring getaways have been to Detroit to visit family.  Also, wonderful, relaxing times and fun outings with brothers, sisters in law, nieces and nephews and friends.  This year, for the first time I'm going to a tropical island resort to play and relax and read and swim and spend quality time with my honey, Erich.  One week and counting...six days and counting...five days.......
Dominican Republic, Island of Hispanola

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

The Mighty Mac

Photos MJHansen
There's a special spot in my heart for the mighty Mackinac Bridge.  For the past several months I have been crossing it about twice a month and have come to look forward to that part of the trip.  Nowhere else can you drive over straits with a magnificent view of two Great Lakes.   At  45mph for cars and 20mph for trucks it's a "leisurely stroll" with panoramic views in every direction.  Once in a while I stop, usually on the North side to enjoy other views and take a few photos.  Here are a few from a week ago on my way home from Houghton.

The next one is a little different.  Bet you can't figure it out!  I was facing away from the bridge and shooting toward the Visitor Center so the image of the bridge is a reflection in a window and the the brighter image in the center is the view through the building and out another window

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Wolf's Head

I've always found it fascinating that the outline of Lake Superior on a map suggests the head of a wolf. The Keweenaw Peninsula is the mouth, Wisconsin's Apostle Islands and Minnesota's Duluth Harbor are the nostril and snout and toward the northwest corner of the earth's  largest freshwater lake* lies Isle Royale, the "eye of the wolf".  It is fitting that the topography and location of Isle Royale should call to mind such a beast.  Wolves are a star attraction on this remote wilderness archipelago but seldom seen by visiting humans.  Their coexistence with a significant moose population have been the subject of an ongoing (over 50 years!) study by Michigan Tech University.  It's a unique opportunity to observe their undisturbed interaction in this isolated location.
Erik, Linda, Erich and I are planning a hiking/kayaking trip there for this August so I'll be writing more as plans evolve.  No, we are not kayaking TO the island, it's a 6 hour boat ride!
*by surface area

Romance is not dead

My guy is such a romantic. Here's just one example I can publish. A couple of weeks ago I was up at his place and we skiied on the bay. The day after I left he went skiing on the bay by himself and sent me these photos.

  (M=Mary, E=Erich)