Letters 10-24-2016

It’s Obama’s 1984 Several editions ago I concluded a short letter to the editor with an ominous rhetorical flourish: “Welcome to George Orwell’s 1984 and the grand opening of the Federal Department of Truth!” At the time I am sure most of the readers laughed off my comments as right-wing hyperbole. Shame on you for doubting me...

Gun Bans Don’t Work It is said that mass violence only happens in the USA. A lone gunman in a rubber boat, drifted ashore at a popular resort in Tunisia and randomly shot and killed 38 mostly British and Irish tourists. Tunisian gun laws, which are among the most restrictive in the world, didn’t stop this mass slaughter. And in January 2015, two armed men killed 11 and wounded 11 others in an attack on the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo. French gun laws didn’t stop these assassins...

Scripps’ Good Deed No good deed shall go unpunished! When Dan Scripps was the 101st District State Representative, he introduced legislation to prevent corporations from contaminating (e.g. fracking) or depleting (e.g. Nestle) Michigan’s water table for corporate profit. There are no property lines in the water table, and many of us depend on private wells for abundant, safe, clean water. In the subsequent election, Dan’s opponents ran a negative campaign almost solely on the misrepresentation that Dan’s good deed was a government takeover of your private water well...

Political Definitions As the time to vote draws near it’s a good time to check into what you stand for. According to Dictionary.com the meanings for liberal and conservative are as follows:

Liberal: Favorable to progress or reform as in political or religious affairs.

Conservative: Disposed to preserve existing conditions, institutions, etc., or to restore traditions and limit change...

Voting Takes A Month? Hurricane Matthew hit the Florida coast Oct. 6, over three weeks before Election Day. Bob Ross (Oct. 17th issue) posits that perhaps evacuation orders from Governor Scott may have had political motivations to diminish turnout and seems to praise Hillary Clinton’s call for Gov. Scott to extend Florida’s voter registration deadline due to evacuations...

Clinton Foundation Facts Does the Clinton Foundation really spend a mere 10 percent (per Mike Pence) or 20 percent (per Reince Priebus) of its money on charity? Not true. Charity Watch gives it an A rating (the same as it gives the NRA Foundation) and says it spends 88 percent on charitable causes, and 12 percent on overhead. Here is the source of the misunderstanding: The Foundation does give only a small percentage of its money to charitable organizations, but it spends far more money directly running a number of programs...

America Needs Change Trump supports our constitution, will appoint judges that will keep our freedoms safe. He supports the partial-birth ban; Hillary voted against it. Regardless of how you feel about Trump, critical issues are at stake. Trump will increase national security, monitor refugee admissions, endorse our vital military forces while fighting ISIS. Vice-presidential candidate Mike Pence will be an intelligent asset for the country. Hillary wants open borders, increased government regulation, and more demilitarization at a time when we need strong military defenses...

My Process For No I will be voting “no” on Prop 3 because I am supportive of the process that is in place to review and approve developments. I was on the Traverse City Planning Commission in the 1990s and gained an appreciation for all of the work that goes into a review. The staff reviews the project and makes a recommendation. The developer then makes a presentation, and fellow commissioners and the public can ask questions and make comments. By the end of the process, I knew how to vote for a project, up or down. This process then repeats itself at the City Commission...

Regarding Your Postcard If you received a “Vote No” postcard from StandUp TC, don’t believe their lies. Prop 3 is not illegal. It won’t cost city taxpayers thousands of dollars in legal bills or special elections. Prop 3 is about protecting our downtown -- not Munson, NMC or the Commons -- from a future of ugly skyscrapers that will diminish the very character of our downtown...

Vote Yes It has been suggested that a recall or re-election of current city staff and Traverse City Commission would work better than Prop 3. I disagree. A recall campaign is the most divisive, costly type of election possible. Prop 3, when passed, will allow all city residents an opportunity to vote on any proposed development over 60 feet tall at no cost to the taxpayer...

Yes Vote Explained A “yes” vote on Prop 3 will give Traverse City the right to vote on developments over 60 feet high. It doesn’t require votes on every future building, as incorrectly stated by a previous letter writer. If referendums are held during general elections, taxpayers pay nothing...

Beware Trump When the country you love have have served for 33 years is threatened, you have an obligation and a duty to speak out. Now is the time for all Americans to speak out against a possible Donald Trump presidency. During the past year Trump has been exposed as a pathological liar, a demagogue and a person who is totally unfit to assume the presidency of our already great country...

Picture Worth 1,000 Words Nobody disagrees with the need for affordable housing or that a certain level of density is dollar smart for TC. The issue is the proposed solution. If you haven’t already seen the architect’s rendition for the site, please Google “Pine Street Development Traverse City”...

Living Wage, Not Tall Buildings Our community deserves better than the StandUp TC “vote no” arguments. They are not truthful. Their yard signs say: “More Housing. Less Red Tape. Vote like you want your kids to live here.” The truth: More housing, but for whom? At what price..

Home · Articles · News · Features · Wouldn’t You Rather Be Winter...
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Wouldn’t You Rather Be Winter Camping?

Rick Coates - December 16th, 2013  

When it comes to camping, most people think of summer and warm conditions, but winter camping is growing in popularity. Northern Michigan and the upper peninsula present many options for scenic locations that combine camping with kayaking, cross-country skiing or snowshoeing.

“We are definitely seeing more of our customers enjoying winter camping,” said Becky Philipp-Kranig of Bearcub Outfitters in downtown Petoskey. “I really feel the appeal for most of them is the beauty. Others like the peacefulness and serenity of winter camping. There is a different feel beyond the temperatures that makes it magical.”

Kranig is partners with her mother B.J. Shawn and Bearcub just celebrated their 15th anniversary this past year.

Winter camping locations are as protected as morel mushrooms locations and fly-fishing holes at area trout streams. “People never say exactly where they are going; it is very generic, like up in the U.P. or near Lake Michigan or on a stretch of such and such river,” said Philipp-Kranig. “While you might want to keep your location a secret from the masses, it is important to let someone know where you are going, when you are leaving, and when you plan to be back.”

Philipp-Kranig, along with the U.S. Coast Guard, recommend that all outdoor enthusiasts carry personal locater beacons.


Several state parks in northern Michigan remain open for winter camping and novice campers may want to start there before venturing deep into the wilderness. North Higgins Lake State Park in Roscommon, Tahquamenon Falls in the U.P. and Tippy Dam near Manistee are all popular state parks for winter camping. Check michigan.gov for a complete list of state parks open during the winter.

Just east of Vanderbilt, the Shingle Mill Pathway is popular with campers from the Emmet/Otsego area. Camping is also permitted at The Sleeping Bear Dunes Platte River Campground. Snowshoe and ski access is available to the White Pine backcountry campsites.

As for gear, Philipp-Kranig offers a few tips that can improve your winter camping experience.

“The obvious for everyone is their shelter/ tent and sleeping bag. But it’s equally important to have a great sleeping mat; we carry the Therm-A-Rest that reflects your body heat,” said Philipp-Kranig. “It’s not just about having a four-season tent or a below zero rated sleeping bag, it is also about keeping your body off the ground.”

Of course, clothing is another important element and many people are prone to making mistakes when selecting clothing for outdoor activities.

People do struggle with this, so consulting with us or other experts will help,” said Philipp-Kranig. “In general, the key is understanding how to layer and making sure you have the right type of clothing. The worst thing you can do is have stuff that doesn’t wick and you are sweating during the day, and then you stop moving your going to get cold. So having clothing that dries quickly is important.


You’ll also need the right equipment for preparing food.

“When it comes to cooking, it is best to use liquid fuel stoves. We sell them and the liquid fuel canisters,” said Philipp-Kranig. “They perform better than traditional camp stoves in cold temperatures.”

Water is another factor. “With freezing and access to clean water you should consider your options. If you are hiking in and don’t have access to your car to store water, you are going to need to melt snow and then filter that water,” said Philipp-Kranig. She notes that water bottles with pre-filters from manufacturers such as Katadyn can be helpful.

For some, camping just isn’t the same without bringing along one’s dog.

“Certain dogs more geared outside, but we do sell special footies for dogs that will help protect the pads on their feet from ice and rocks,” said Philipp-Kranig. “If you have a thin-haired dog there are coats for them to consider. I also fee it is important for all dogs to be off the ground as well when sleeping. So consider a mat or sleeping bag to get them off the ground as well.”

For more information on winter camping visit Becky Philipp-Kranig of Bearcub Outfi t- ters in downtown Petoskey. Check out there website at bearcuboutfitters.com or call them 231-439-9500. If you are in the Traverse City area consider reaching out to Backcountry Outfi tters. They have two Traverse City locations backcountrytc.com for more details.

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