Long Legacy of Summers at the Lake

I was aware Michigan bordered some ginormous lakes. However, my Michigan travel experience was limited to short visits in and around the motor city. I was not familiar with the beauty bestowed north-central Michigan’s smaller swimming holes. Nor the depth and richness of lake culture spun from these geological relics. Lake life up here is a big deal.

Nestled among tall pines in the small village of Roscommon is one such lake. Circling the lake are groves of cottages passed down through generations. Visiting is a step back in time. Large extended families gather for full summer stays; kids roam freely disappearing at sunrise and returning at sunset; and meals are served community style, three square daily, summoned by a bell. My visit was a short but sweet few days; however, it did not take long to appreciate why this annual pilgrimage has endured.

I had the privilege of documenting a slice of what summers at the lake are like for these kids. It is quiet and raucous, busy and calm, connected and withdrawn, boring and lots and lots of fun. It is special.

Fair warning, this post contains an excessive number of photos, violating all blogging best practices. But it was a busy few days.

(want to view the images larger? click any image to open in slideshow mode without text. then click left/right.)

into the abyss. searching for that stash of supersoakers under the cottage from last summer.

fishing for minnows

he’d have fished 24hrs a day if allowed.

first fish on a fly. it’s a monsta!

the one that got away


a.m. fly tying lessons

spiderman’s morning workout

off to breakfast

ringing the mess hall bell – a right of passage

making rock monsters.
he may be into spiderman, but his favorite superhero will always be mom.

head rest

rock monsters

studying fish facts

afternoon respite on the porch swing

cousins tubing

never give up!


fishing for the chipmunk who lives under the porch

grandpa Fred

primed and ready for bug huntin’

huntin’ crickets



wading to the swim dock

kid chucking. they couldn’t get enough of it.



essential life skills – building a campfire

chalk one up in the cool column for grandpa

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