SUBSCRIBE | NEWSLETTERS | MAPS | VIDEOS | BLOGS | MARKETPLACE | CONTESTS
TRY BACKPACKER FREE!
SUBSCRIBE NOW and get
2 Free Issues and 3 Free Gifts!
Full Name:
Address 1:
Address 2:
City:
State:
Zip Code:
Email: (required)
If I like it and decide to continue, I'll pay just $12.00, and receive a full one-year subscription (9 issues in all), a 73% savings off the newsstand price! If for any reason I decide not to continue, I'll write "cancel" on the invoice and owe nothing.
Your subscription includes 3 FREE downloadable booklets.
Or click here to pay now and get 2 extra issues
Offer valid in US only.

Also on Backpacker.com


Enter Zip Code

Backpacker Magazine – May 2000

The Otters Of Michigan's Sylvania Wilderness

You'll emerge from a forested hallway into a wilderness playroom, and there before you will be skidmarks in the snow.

by: Eric Hansen

PAGE 1 2

I well remember the first time I suffered from otter envy. I was skiing across a frozen lake in northern Michigan's Sylvania Wilderness one fine February day, and I came upon some strange marks in the snow. There were several bounding paw prints followed by a 20-foot-long skid mark. To my amazement, this dot-dot-dot-dash pattern repeated itself for more than a mile as the otter, taking several running steps for momentum and then bellyflopping forward, hopped and slid to the next fishing hole. Winter, ever since, has become prime time for me to find otters and watch their slithering, skidding, sliding antics.

Sylvania, with 18,000 acres of pristine, otter-friendly forest and 36 named lakes, is an ideal place for a weekend trip in search of the furry funhogs. One of the best options is the 2-mile ski along Clark Lake to a campsite known as Birch, a cozy, south-facing cove that makes a superbly located basecamp. From there, a 9-mile loop connects Loon, Florence, Big Bateau, Cub, and Deer Island Lakes and their portage trails.

The journey through Sylvania alternates pleasantly between dense forests and open lake basins. The portage trails are like hallways through stands of old-growth white pine, hemlock, yellow birch, and sugar maple, while the lakes are vast rooms, each with a unique shape and atmosphere. Time after time you'll emerge from a forested hallway into a wilderness playroom, and there before you will be skidmarks in the snow. Then you'll know: Frolicking otters are close by.


PAGE 1 2


Subscribe to Backpacker magazine
Sign up for our free weekly e-newsletter
Name:
Address 1:
Address 2:
City:
State:
Zip:
Email (req):

Reader Rating: -

ADD A COMMENT

Your rating:
Your Name:

Comment:

My Profile Join Now

Most recent threads

Trailhead Register
Falling in the backcountry
Posted On: Aug 20, 2014
Submitted By: Grizzly James
The Political Arena
How ISIS got rich
Posted On: Aug 20, 2014
Submitted By: Ben2World
Go
View all Gear
Find a retailer

Special sections - Expert handbooks for key trails, techniques and gear

Check out Montana in Warren Miller's Ticket to Ride
Warren Miller athletes charge hard and reflect on Big Sky country, their love for this space and the immense energy allotted to the people who reside in Montana.

Boost Your Apps
Add powerful tools and exclusive maps to your BACKPACKER apps through our partnership with Trimble Outdoors.

Carry the Best Maps
With BACKPACKER PRO Maps, get life-list destinations and local trips on adventure-ready waterproof myTopo paper.

FREE Rocky Mountain Trip Planner
Sign up for a free Rocky Mountain National Park trip planning kit from our sister site MyRockyMountainPark.com.

Follow BackpackerMag on Twitter Follow Backpacker on Facebook
Get 2 FREE Trial Issues and 3 FREE GIFTS
Survival Skills 101 • Eat Better
The Best Trails in America
YES! Please send me my FREE trial issues of Backpacker
and my 3 FREE downloadable booklets.
Full Name:
City:
Address 1:
Zip Code:
State:
Address 2:
Email (required):
Free trial offer valid for US subscribers only. Canadian subscriptions | International subscriptions