The Manistee River Trail is an 11-mile trek that winds along the east side of the Manistee River near Mesick, Michigan. Combine that with a 12-mile stretch of the North Country Trail on the west side of the river, and you've got a 23-mile loop that ranges in difficulty from moderate to challenging, especially when hiked in two days (as we will). If you're up for the challenge of occasionally rough, hilly terrain in the middle of July, then this is a trip for you.
No beginners please! If you are new to the club, please send Christopher a note to explain your experience level. Participation is at the discretion of the organizers.
Itinerary (subject to change with adequate notice):
Friday, 19 July: leave Chicago as early as we can (most people will leave from work, but others will take the day off) drive the 5-6 hours to Seaton Creek Campground, car camp that night. Depending on how many people actually go on the trip (the number could fluctuate between now and then) and site availability, we will probably get either two single sites ($14/ night, limit 8 people per site) or one double site ($25/ night, limit 16 people per site).
Saturday, 20 July: hike south along the North Country Trail (about 12 miles) cross the Manistee River at Red Bridge, hike a few more miles north along the Manistee River Trail (we'll see how we feel at that point, but the idea is the more we hike on Saturday, the faster our hike out on Sunday) and set up camp.
Sunday, 21 July: hike back to Seaton Creek Campground, get lunch, drive 5-6 hours back to Chicago.
• $5 meetup fee - not refundable
• $4 vehicle parking fee per car (split within carpool)
• $14 or $25 campsite fee per site (split among participants at the location: bring cash)
• Gasoline costs (split within carpool)
The role of organizers:
Organizers are responsible for trip planning and organizing carpools. We have researched the route and made campsite reservations, if necessary. We will also email participants to collect carpool information about 10 days prior to the trip. Be sure to check email and respond promptly. Those who fail to respond will be dropped from the trip.
Expectations of participants:
Backpacking can be a strenuous cardiovascular exercise. Participants should be in reasonably good health and physical fitness.
All participants are responsible for obtaining the essential gear for the trip.
While on the trail, we function as a group, so do whatever you can to contribute to the overall good of the group. This can mean, for example, gathering wood for a campfire, filtering water, waiting at every trail junction for the people behind you, or singing trail songs (or in my case, not singing).
Organizers will do their best to ensure everyone has a safe and enjoyable time; however, you are ultimately responsible for your own comfort.
Remember that July can bring hot/humid weather, so plan accordingly. Also, don't forget any medications, prescription eyewear, etc. Let an Organizer know if you have any special requirements.
Please contact an Organizer if you have any questions!
• Only group members may attend. +1 add-ons are not permitted. If you have a friend that wishes to attend, please have him or her join the group and add him/herself to the list.
• Dogs, minors, or other dependents are not permitted.
• We practice Leave No Trace outdoor ethics (www.lnt.org) and expect the same behavior from all participants.