Long long time ago, I can still remember…..I had a student exactly thirty years younger than I, and a colleague exactly fifteen years younger than I. We went on a college canoeing trip to the BWCA once, then twice, and now it has morphed into an every year activity. We paddle one year, bike the next, and hike the third. We are apparently very compatible, as this has been going on for twenty years or more. We have canoed throughout the BWCA and into the Quetico in Canada. We have biked on the Mesabi Trail (an old rails-to-trails paved path that weaves through the mining communities of the Iron Range), the Sparta-Elroy Trail in Wisconsin, and on the Paul Bunyan Trail in northern Minnesota.
We have hiked on Isle Royale and completed several segments of the Superior Hiking Trail, a lovely route that parallels Lake Superior and dips into all those scenic state parks along the North Shore. We attempted a section of the Border Route Trail until we had to turn back because it was under water. One of our goals is to complete the Superior Hiking Trail before I retire to a wheelchair. At this point, a casual observer could mistake us for a grandma, a dad, and a kid, although the kid is now pushing forty. I told my buddies years ago that when I turned seventy I still wanted to do things with them. They assured me we would stick together. Well, I am sixty-nine now–we’ll see how long we can keep this up! Another reason the continuity of these expeditions is impressive is that one of the guys lives in Texas now. He drives or flies up to Minnesota every year. We are honored and humbled by his dedication.
Our first-name initials are M, A, and T. We didn’t really want to call ourselves “ATM,” nor “TAM,” nor “MAT,” so we are officially AMT. It can be used as an acronym for all kinds of things. Here is a link to our public AMT Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/366548540882147