My 1961 Apache Chief camper has accounted for the majority of hits on the fichigan blog. People love these old campers and have clubs dedicated to their preservation. Mine served me well. The canvas is still very good. No worries about bad weather. This year I bought a 2006 Scamp trailer and didn’t need two campers so I gave the Apache to Jake, Feral’s son. Jake you might remember as the artist in Alpena, Michigan that did the bike path sculpture as well as the art nouveau bike racks downtown. He’s a blacksmith and artist of amazing talent. He was at trout camp this spring and asked about the camper.
I met Jake and Feral up at Burnt Clutch, a remote (free) camping spot, to pass along the camper and do some fishing. I was protesting the fee increase at the Pigeon River rustic campgrounds – see previous post. It was a one-night trip. We fished the Pigeon River together, the three of us wading up the river and taking turns in the lead. Jake was using what I thought was a vintage Shakespeare close-face spinning reel and rod but it turns out the reel was a South Bend 1200. It seemed to be an exact copy of a Shakespeare 1776 leaving me to wonder if Shakespeare made reels for South Bend in the fifties?
Jake took the lead and caught a twenty inch brown trout right away. He was placing the lure with precision next to the bank and working the cover well. I was impressed. I hadn’t fished with him in a while. He caught a second nice brown on his next turn up front.
Feral and I were out-fished (and getting used to that with Natch) but now Jake, another upstart, had us making jokes to cover our pain. We recovered enough to catch a couple pan fryers but, hey.
Jake with his 1961 Apache Chief camper. I ran through the process of set-up and take-down with him, and threw in some wheel bearings and misc stuff he might appreciate. There are other posts about this camper if you use this blog’s search engine which tell some history. I purchased it for $275 so long ago it is embarrassing to admit when. I sure got my money’s worth.