Russ and Barb's First Overnight Adventure
My name is Russ and my wife's name is Barb. We live in the little village of Banfield, Michigan. I found your Bike Overnight site and the link to make the kitty litter panniers. I made the panniers and waited for the weather to cool off to try them out on our first overnight trip.
We drove to a F.O.E. (Fraternal Order of Eagles) on U.S. Highway 10, about 10 miles east of our destination, the city of Evart along the Muskegon River. The F.O.E was a great place to have lunch, and the prices were good. Then we were on our way on the Pere Marquette State Trail, a rail-trail that goes through the scenic country of up-north Michigan. You go through three tunnels, see a lot of wildflowers, and, going from east to west, cross an old trestle bridge just as you get to Evart. This section of the trail is quite new, as it was just finished in late summer 2011. We also saw two deer on our return trip.
Evart is a wonderful place. We camped at the city park right on the Muskegon River. Tent camping is $12 per night and they have WiFi. Anything you would need is only a few blocks away.
They have some nice places to eat in Evart; B.C Pizza is one of my favorites. They also have a McDonald's, which is where we had breakfast. There is also a Subway, an ice cream shop, a Mancino's, and a Mexican restaurant.
It was a wonderful trip, though the park was a little noisy at night in a tent. There is a factory nearby. You can put your tent just feet from the river. We will do this again. We didn't sleep all that well, as our pads were like sleeping on the ground. I now have two cots that we'll bring along next time. I guess as we get older we like a little more comfort.
Tip for this adventure: Don't miss B.C Pizza. They have a lunch buffet. Just tell them what kind of pizza you like and they will put one in for you.
Favorite local bike shop: Custer Cyclery, about 12 miles from our house, is where we do our bike business.