When the weather is too nice to stay inside and work, there are a number of local spots where I can go to soak up some nature.
One of my favorites is a Natural Area called Rugg Pond. Located where the two branches of the Rapid River converge on their way to Torch Lake, it was dammed and harnessed for a power plant in the early 20th century, turning what was once a pond into a small lake.
The plant is long gone, with only a concrete and steel outflow channel remaining, concentrating a rainbow-tinged torrent of water from the lake above to the Rapid River below.
Peaceful despite the remains of the derelict plant, it is home to a wide variety of fish and waterfowl.
There is a family of swans there that I've been watching all summer. The chicks have grown now; I can no longer distinguish them from their parents.
I often see bald eagles skimming the water or flying above, though I have yet to get a picture.
Known locally as a prime fishing hole, it is widely stated (though unproven) that Ernest Hemingway enjoyed a night of angling from the Rugg Pond Dam powerhouse.
Summer didn't really make much of an appearance in northern Michigan this year and is nearly gone. Leaves are beginning their Autumn change. Soon it will be time to think about snow tires and shoveling - knowing that makes an afternoon on Rugg Pond a treasure, indeed!