Livin’ on a loop

News from Our Northern Correspondent arrived this morning (she sent me some pics and videos her husband took and I asked for permission to post a couple). For the second time in my memory somebody veered off the nicely paved Birch Point Loop onto Chickadee, the gravel two-track road that leads down to our cabins on the moominbeach, and crashed into trees.

I do NOT know what happened but I can only guess that the driver was whaling down the hill going north on Birch Point Loop and missed/forgot the fact that it hangs a left at the bottom of the hill. If you go straight, you’re on Chickadee. If you don’t slow down when you enter Chickadee, you are likely to hit something, hopefully trees and not an oncoming vee-hickle. Chickadee looks like a tunnel when the deciduous foliage grows in. The yooperland isn’t there yet.

The last time this happened, the car caught fire and the driver was thrown out and died. My cousin Grinch found the burned car on his way to work the next morning but fortunately did not see the driver. This time the driver escaped and abandoned the car. Drunk? That would be my guess. The state police apparently knew who owned the car but not who was driving it.

UPDATE!!! I was WRONG WRONG WRONG about how yesterday’s accident happened. I shouldda asked for more details. See my cousin Jan’s comment below for an accurate description from some who was THERE!

My grandfather and his friends built the first iteration of Birch Point Loop, at least the part that goes down the hill. This is one of those moments I wish I could ask my parents to verify my memories of what they told me. The road was very primitive in those days. Unlikely for anyone to be able to go fast enough to miss the turn and anyway no turn to miss.

Eventually Birch Point Loop became a county road and my early memories of it were that it was two lane but gravel. My *earliest* memory of it was my first (?) time going to the cabin. I was 5-6 months old lying on the back seat of our old black Ford and I could hear the susurration of the pine trees in the persistent breeze off Gitchee Gumee, aka the northwest wind.

Later on when we had our dog Tigger, there was a little routine. Tigger would be totally freaked out on the first leg of the trip. Why? Because we were on the road that also led to the vet. Once we turned right at Pine Grove Cemetery, she would switch over to excitement because she knew WE WERE GOING TO THE CABIN! When we got to Birch Point Loop, dad would take her collar off and let her out of the car to run the rest of the way. 25 miles per hour!

Eventually Birch Point Loop was paved and although I wouldn’t call it a busy raceway, you can get up to a pretty good speed on the straightaway that goes down the hill. Watch for deer though. And bears. And that turn.

So glad this person was [apparently] not injured, at least not seriously, and didn’t injure or kill anyone else.

5 Responses to “Livin’ on a loop”

  1. Jay Says:

    I remember riding up the gravel road in the back of some vehicle, lying on our backs going Ahhhhh, so we would here the vibrations in the sound.

  2. Pooh Says:

    Jay, I think it was Granddaddy’s Jeep. If memory serves, it was white (maybe with a red stripe?). The care being towed in the picture looks like a big SUV, so less clearance for dodging trees.

  3. Jan Miller Says:

    The car was going up the road. We had a car last week-end going up and down the road very fast in the middle of the night and we think this was the same one. They tried to get out with the help of another vehicle, but were unsuccessful, just messed up the road. Mike called Pete on his way to work, and Pete called the police, Judd and George. They waited for the police, and the police called the wrecker. They did make a mess of the ditch on Attie’s side of the road. That will need to be cleaned up. We don’t know why they were on the road.

  4. Margaret Says:

    We have some roads around here that are famous for accidents. I lived on one for a while and the kids used to fight over who got to call 911.

  5. Pooh Says:

    Jan, thanks for adding more information. It’s scary that a car would go up and down the road in the middle of the night. Even scarier that it would try it going very fast!