Growing up in suburban Detroit was wild and raw. a string of epic adventures. A dear friend once told me “everything in life is in a constant state of growth or decay”. As the ticky tacky houses of suburbia continued to fill the horizon line, the glamorous city of detroit began to crumble .I spent my youth exploring countless abandoned factories, schools and even insane asaylums. My curiosity grew with each mysterious remnant i’d find. an old postcard from a loved one, or a saxophone with the reed still in place. Detroit may have have been physically falling apart, but man did that town have soul. when I turned 17 I moved down town proper to start my own time of growth as I would later reflect.
My love for adventure kept me thriving in Detroit, but it also kept my mind wandering elsewhere. What was it like in England ? Or Colorado? I had to know. So I eventually left the mitten state andhave had 6 years of unforgettable experiences across the globe. But sometime in the middle of all the fun i realized I NEVER EVEN TOOK THE TIME TO EXPLORE MICHIGAN. The Michigan that wasn’t Detroit. The Michigan with Great Lakes and trees for days. The Upper Peninsula, the place with all that frozen water.
Making the journey home to climb Michigan ice has been an unforgettable one. New and un-fathamable scenery with the same ol’ midwestern folks that I love and adore. As I skied out to climb above superior my stomach was filled with butterflies , of both fear and excitement. Colton William Moore of Marquette lead the way, with photographer and fellow Detroit Rob Dawson right behind. We skied the rim until we found a climb that looked like my dream. It was everything I thought it would be. delicate daggers hanging above the open water perfectly framing two incredibly beautiful free standing pillars. Colton told me that those the twin towers.
I rapelled in first, carefully walking down the two orange colored pillars. I built a belay and soon colton zipped down. I was all racked and ready to go when reaching for my tools I realized there was only one. We both hung in the belay turning our heads to Lake Superior in astonishment . Gone. It must have unclipped while i was rappelling. Luckily colton is the coolest person ever so he gave me his tools to lead on and he made a proud (and possibly first) follow on a single ice tool. THOSE MICHIGAN FOLKS ARE HARDCORE! We laughed our way back to the minivan and shared a cheers at the Bear Trap Inn. One , two, three Michiganders all in a row. It was the best of all days.
PHOTOS BY: ROB DAWSON