Ice Age Trail: Peters Marsh

This is a continuation of the Antigo trip…

Day Three:  Per my custom, I was up early to eat breakfast and brew coffee.  The campground put out some nice advertising for Antigo’s farmer’s market, so I walked over to the Heinzen Peaceful Valley Pavilion, where vendors were still setting up at 7:45 a.m .  I continued to stroll around downtown and was one of the first customers at the 8 a.m. opening.  I scooped up two quarts of maple syrup to bring home and veggies to stir fry that night for dinner, along with some 50 cent sourdough rolls.

As I hiked back to the Brew Hut, someone yelled, “Hey, John.”  It was Deb from Lodi, who seemed as surprised to see me hiking down the street in Antigo as I was to see her driving down the street in Antigo.  Small world!

Back at camp, I changed into long pants, long sleeve shirt, and packed up bug spray and water.  Then I drove 20 miles northeast of Antigo to the Lumberjack segment of the Ice Age Trail.  The access was a small parking lot on Hwy A.

I wish that I could report that this was one of my favorite segments of the Ice Age Trail, but I can’t do that.  Nearly all of the ten mile hike (5 in and 5 out) was on old logging roads, which isn’t too surprising as this segment is called the Lumber Camp segment.  After I made it back home, I read the Ice Age Trail Organization’s notes on the section.

“Besides grassy stretches not mowed regularly, the heat, insects and special provision of water make summer less desirable for enjoying the pleasantries of a trail experience.”

That pretty much summed up my hike.  The grass was chest and shoulder-high in places.  The trail wasn’t really wet so much as the grass was wet.  Within 20 minutes, my shoes, socks and pants (knee down) were soaked.  Here’s a sample of the trail.

In almost any hike, one can find natural beauty, and this segment was no exception.

And there were berries.  Not all the berries were ripe, but some of the berries were so ripe and sun-warmed that the berry would partly fall apart before exploding in sweetness inside my mouth

Of course, as I dawdled to pick the choicest berries, the mosquitoes ate me alive.  The fruit was worth it, but only to a point.  The Ice Age notes mentioned insects, not just mosquitoes, so they were probably thinking of the deer tick and wood tick that I plucked off when performing a “check” back at the campsite.  Neither were embedded yet, so that was a bonus.

I ate an early supper:

Dessert was a Lakefront IPA and the Packer’s exhibition game against Washington. Life in the Brew Hut is good.