In October 2011, I was Artist in Residence at Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park. With old growth forests, waterfalls, Lake Superior and a plethora of hiking trails, I was inspired until I was overflowing.
We were fortunate to go on two guided hikes with Park Interpreter, Bob Wild, which I highly recommend you do if visiting there. The first was an early evening bear den hike – during a time when posted signs in the Park said “Bear Activity is High”! The second was a twilight, 90 minute guided hike through the former town site and copper mill of the Nonesuch Copper Mine. The former copper mill’s limestone building shells and processing pits are slowly disintegrating and there is talk of archeological work being done there in the future if funding can be found.
It was the old town site that really interested me. The buildings are long gone – torn down or moved during the Depression. Lilac bushes and fruit trees that now feed only wildlife are the only things left that show that humans inhabited the town site. As we walked back out of the area, the full moon shone down on Nonesuch. The relatively young trees, holding on to the last of their golden leaves, glowed softly. The Reclamation by the Wilderness was well on its way.