Ocqueoc Falls in winter

winter_falls_lowresWe have a dainty-sized gem very close to Long Lake: Ocqueoc Falls. The entrance is off M-68, between Onaway and Rogers City, not far from Millersberg. It’s actually the largest waterfall in the entire lower peninsula. OK. OK. My son says that Somerset Mall has a larger waterfall, but he’s enjoyed this spot so much more than any mall’s falls. In summer, the spot at the base of the falls is much more tame and very good swimmers can have a very good time. But this is winter.

On December 23rd, we trudged through about 10 inches of new snow, wishing we’d brought our snowshoes. It’s a short walk from the parking lot to the falls. There are pit toilets at the lot. I rate pit toilets on a hospitality scale and in winter most of their marks go way up. But, in addition to being clean and not smelling like you needed to hold your breath through the duration of your visit, the women’s toilet was: (a) unlocked, and (b) had toilet paper. So, that’s an A+. But I digress. It’s a short walk to the falls. In the winter you are spared noticing that the state of Michigan decided to spruce up the path a few years ago and you don’t have to be distracted by the fact that you’re on a man-made walkway. The changes did make the park ADA compliant, though–so that’s a big plus.

No one was here but us. It looked like one person, and several deer, had walked through the snow before us.

Pure Michigan. For real. Here’s a taste of the sounds of the falls:




Criss-cross Stitch

This is a very old friend. When I read the description of how it was done, I didn’t even recall this stitch. But then some kind of muscle memory took over and I remembered using it, long ago, in who knows what. It is a two row repeat, worked on an even number of stitches.  Row 1: knit 1, * slip one (as if to purl), knit one, pass slip stitch over (but leave it on the left needle and knit into the back of it) *, repeat from * to *, knit one. Row 2: *purl 2 together (don’t slip it off the left needle), purl again through the first stitch*, repeat from * to * across row.

What moved this stitch out of the memory banks and into my hands, is my current project: Chris de Longpre’s “Wrap Me Up.” This Knitting at Knoon pattern is great fun. It’s basically a stitch sampler shawl, with each new block knitted on to completed ones.  Block 13 is knitted in criss-cross stitch.  I’m using size 4 needles and three complementary colored variegated Opal 6 ply sock yarn.  Mine will be a scarf instead of a shawl.  Here’s how the criss-cross block knits up. Obviously, it’s the herringbone stitch on the right side:

There wasn’t much out on the net demonstrating this stitch. With Steve’s help, I’ve posted my first YouTube video. Some of it came out fairly nice. The audio is not too bad  The demo of the knit side works. As for the purl side–you’ll be able to follow it, despite my best efforts to keep ducking my knitting out of camera range. Who knew I purled with such rhythmic enthusiasm. Feel free to critique the video. If you haven’t yet tried this stitch, it creates a very firm fabric.  If you aren’t easily bored, a narrow strip of it could turn into a nifty necktie.

The video: