Tis the season, and I don’t mean Christmas, though this season can be full of precious gifts. Every summer my longtime hunting partner, Mike, and I head up north in search of adventure and lost treasure, these trips generally starting in late June or early July and continuing into October. Some years we’ll take several trips, just depends on how often we can get away. Typically these are three and four day trips, perhaps the coast of one of the Great Lakes where endless beaches abound or maybe into the northern Michigan heartland or Upper Peninsula where tranquility can be found on the shores of numerous small lakes.

We’ve been taking these trips for about 20 years now and each new trip is still just as exciting as the very first. When we go into the northern Heartland we always take a traveling break at the Soaring Eagle Casino in Mt. Pleasant, sometimes we have pretty good luck, sometimes we don’t, other times we have paid for our entire trips with our winnings. We spend about one hour there, come what may, and then back on the open road again in route to our destinations.

And speaking of destinations, well, usually we don’t really have any set destinations, everything pretty much just following the mood and flow of things, all of our camping gear and other equipment loaded in the back of the van or SUV. This is how we fly and over the years we’ve gotten to know northern Michigan and many of its lakes and campgrounds and beaches pretty well. And the best part, it doesn’t require a lot of expense or gear beyond the typical basics.

I keep all of my camping gear in a single large tote, another smaller tote houses all of my detecting accessories, extra coils, seals, batteries, wet suit, etc. Mike and I both take a camera bag, a duffle bag with a few changes of clothes, we take a large cooler and table-top grill, a tote for the perishable foods and paper plates and things of that nature. Camping is cheap at most places and when gas isn’t too high we seldom spend $300 between us and lack for nothing, a small price to pay for a few days of adventure, metal detecting, photography, and relaxation in the great Michigan north country. When we return we are revitalized, rested, and more often then not bearing precious rewards.

As for the camping gear, we try to keep things pretty simple, but comfortable, $100 worth of gear being all that is required and if cared for it will last you several seasons. I just had to buy a new tent this year, I shopped around and spent $25 on a two person dome tent, also purchased a new bed mattress for under $5 which is actually a swimming pool lounger. The point is to keep things simple and easy and as compact as possible as we often pickup camp and hit the road again at the drop of a hat, a small converter allowing us to keep things charged when required while in camp. Today I’ll be gathering up all of my totes and gear in preparation of the arriving adventure season. It is now the season and adventure and treasure awaits!

Cheers! And as always, good luck and be safe out there.

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