Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Octobersbest: Clamp Champ and Ram Man check out Sleeping Bear Dunes

My birthday was two weeks ago (the 8th) so the wife and I went up to Traverse City, again!  Nothin' celebrates October like the Dunes around my birthday.  So bascially, celebrating October means doing things I like.  Only my things.

The Dunes were sparsely populated this time around, so I was able to take some pics without many onlookers, though I didn't take as many as I would have liked.  It was freakin' BEAUTIFUL up there, as you can see by the scene from the balcony of the hotel where we stayed:

I wasn't sure if I was going to be able to get any pics, but I brought up two guys with me anyway: Clamp Champ and Ram Man.  Ram Man is an old favorite from the vintage days, and Clamp Champ is one I always wanted, but never got (so he became a quick favorite in the Classics line).  I have no idea why I teamed them up, but it worked...somehow.

This is the Dune Climb; I neglected to show this in my last post about the Dunes.  This is the most common place for people to start climbing.  After you get up there....there's more dunes.  It's AWESOME.  You can take many different trails all the way to Lake Michigan - my wife and I did back in  2006.  We didn't plan to do it...we just started walking.  Didn't bring anywhere near enough water, so we slowly rationed out what we had to get to Lake Michigan and back again, then promptly died a noble death at the hotel.

Now, eight years later....we're crazy out of shape.  Not that we were in great shape back then, either.  But MAN that climb is harder than I remember it.  It's always worth it, though, and this marks the first time I was able to grab some shots up there with the figures!

In retrospect, I should have "walked" their feet in the sand a bit, so there were some footprints leading up to where they're standing.  My wife Elena thought of that for pictures we took of her doll, Evie - she got into American Girl dolls when trying to make some clothes for our niece's doll (helps to have a doll to fit the clothes to, and it also helps to have a preexisting desire to own some of those dolls since she was a little girl).

See the difference the prints make?  Also: That's two people on top of the dunes taking pictures of toys.  How much you wana bet we were the ONLY people?

There weren't many opportunities to take more pics, sadly, but I'm happy with what I got.  After the climb, we drove over to the Scenic Drive and hit stop #9 (where some of the last outside shots were taken) to watch the The Great Sun God dive into Lake Michigan and burn its last fiery breath of daylight.

Another great day in October.


  1. Thanks to your wife I wish to photograph one of those dolls. To paraphrase Professor Farnsworth: "Tell her I hate her!"

    The doll photo and the shot of Clamp Champ surveying the landscape are top-notch, man.

    1. Honestly, I wish I woulda taken more pics! I should have put more pics of Evie (the doll) up to fill it out. We got some other great shots.

      Anyhow, thanks!

  2. Ah, I loves me some outdoor figure pics. And yeah, trails of footprints is hard to remember, but looks much better. Maybe they just went through one of the Sorceress starburst effect portals and touched down there?

    Evie knows how to work it though. The sand I mean. Man, that made me feel creepy.

    1. Yeah, I'm going with portals. In any case, it'll be something to work on next time I'm up there.

      And yes, totally creepy. What's wrong with you, man? YOU'RE SICK.