Isle Royale Reflections, Part 3

In two previous posts, I outlined our trip from 2009 to Isle Royale in Michigan’s Lake Superior.  Isle Royale is the nation’s smallest National Park.  There are approximately 650 moose on the island and 24 wolf, and someone, by God’s design, the wolf/moose ratio has been kept in balance over the past 50 years.  When the moose population starts to swell, they end up not finding enough cover or food in the winter months.  Or the younger, weaker moose are left as easy prey for the hungry wolves, especially in winter.  A wolf is no match for a moose in the summer months.  The legs of a moose can easily kill a wolf with one swift kick.

On the other hand, with their long legs, a moose has a very hard time in the deep snow that covers the island most of the winter.  This makes them an easier target for the wolves on the island.  Without their strong legs to kick with, a moose has little left to protect themselves.

Last year I was amazed to see all the standing untouched white birch trees…forests of them.  Beautiful.  Is this Michigan?  I am glad that it is, and it will be a treat to return with a new group of men this year as we explore the different stages of what it means to be a real and full man.  John Eldredge says in his book, Fathered by God (or The Way of the Wild Heart), that we are “unfinished and uninitiated men”.  There is a lot that our fathers never showed us.  True, there is much that they did show us.  But in many more cases our fathers never initiated us into real and authentic manhood.  It is because our fathers never received this type of guidance from their fathers, and so something is missing.  Something critical to our nature.  Part of this trip is designed to help men get back what has been missing.  It can happen.  And it is good.  Good for the man coming, his spouse, his children, his work, and his community.

I’ll finish with one more short story from Jeff who came with us from Belmont, Michigan:

“Isle Royale is one of those experiences in life that is both very hard and very good–grueling and transcendent. It was tough physically, spiritually, and psychologically. But it was worth it. There was fruit. It did a deep work in me–a work that endures, a work that lasts, a work that I don’t think I fully understand but that will be best understood from the perspective of eternity.”

Journey on, Journey well.


PS:  We still have two remaining spots open if you wish to go.  Our trip is leaves Grand Rapids on Monday, July 26 and return Sunday, Aug 1.  Let me know.

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