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Hoff doing well on latest canoe adventure

The following is a recent segment of Larry Hoff's journal entries as he sets out on a number of adventures for the summer of 2009. Hoff began the Ultimate Hugh Heward Challenge April 17 and is considering three other journeys this summer and fall.

The following is a recent segment of Larry Hoff's journal entries as he sets out on a number of adventures for the summer of 2009. Hoff began the Ultimate Hugh Heward Challenge April 17 and is considering three other journeys this summer and fall.

Hoff has earned a reputation for taking on and finishing extreme adventures. He completed an Atlantic-Pacific canoe trip in 2007. In 2002 he hiked the 2,500-mile Pacific Crest Trail, and in 2004 Hoff biked the perimeter of the United States -- about 10,000 miles.

April 20

It rained most of the night and still is drizzling as I get set to continue on to the Grand River. Sure glad I stopped when I did yesterday, for I got my tent set up and everything secure before it really started to come down. Also, it felt good just to relax and reminisce about all that's transpired since I left Belle Isle in Detroit. Plus, a good night's sleep is just what the doctor ordered.

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It felt good to be back on the river. Current was fast, river was flooded and from the starting point to Eaton Rapids, many times I found myself weaving in and out of trees and deadfalls. At times I felt I missed a turn and was lost in a bayou.

As I paddled into Eaton Rapids I was looking for a take-out spot as I approached a dam I needed to portage around. I passed a boat landing back a ways, but figured there had to be one closer to the dam. I was wrong. All I found were homes and private property. I was thinking to myself, 'Shucks, I have to turn around and go back.' Nothing bothers me more than backtracking. Just then I spotted a man cleaning up his yard on the other side of the river not far from the dam. I thought, heck it's worth a try, maybe he'll let me cross his property.

Darren Tanner, a young man who'd just bought the home and property was more than happy to allow me to portage across his land once he heard what I was doing. As many have in the past, he seemed bewildered as I put my bike portaging system together and told some of my story.

Thanks, Darren.

It was getting close to 2 p.m. as I re-entered the water and headed to Dimondale. It's at Dimondale I'm leaving the water and moving up to Portland, Mich. Dimondale is the starting point for the 50-mile Hugh Heward Challenge which is being held next Saturday (April 25). My plan is to come back to do this then, for this is the big event for the Kruger Memorial Project and I do not want to miss it. So, I will continue on from Portland and return in the afternoon on April 24 to Dimondale.

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I arrived at Dimondale around 5 p.m. The first day's journey on the Grand River is over.

For more about his current adventure, visit Hoff's Web site: www.lhoff.com .

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