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Old 03-05-2016, 07:58 AM   #1
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UP Michigan Bugs ?

We're planning a 3 week trip to the UP in June. I've read posts about the terrible flys and mosquitos. Do any of you have experience with being up there and fighting these pesty insects? I want to be armed and ready to camp and not have them ruin our trip. Advice please...

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Old 03-05-2016, 08:02 AM   #2
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Where are you visiting? We plan our trips to the UP for August to avoid the black flies in particular. We have experienced mosquitos though, especially if there had been an unusually wet summer as it was a couple of years ago.

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Old 03-05-2016, 08:02 AM   #3
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My summer experiences have always been in late July to mid-August and all I can say is bring plenty of "OFF." Between the black and horse flies and the mosquitoes it can be very miserable.
But is sure is a pretty area of the state. And some years can be worse than others; so it can change.
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Old 03-05-2016, 08:12 AM   #4
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It is hard to base a trip on "Bug's",we had the Little Lady Bug looking Bug's Completely Cover 1 side of our unit while at Lake Gogebic,Mi. "UP"! They invaded EVERY location possible, I Still had them comming out 3 years later while in Fla. I see you live in Il. so you have these also,you can run,but you cant Hide from Bug's! Youroo!!
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Old 03-05-2016, 09:07 AM   #5
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The bugs have not bothered us on numerous trips through the UP. Although it's usually been June. But since we have our own bug problems in northern Ontario and we may be used to bugs as a fact of life and don't let it bother us.

Worst trip we ever had for bugs was in Virginia in August. The mosquitos could carry you away. They had a tank sprayer on the back of a pickup and would drive up and down the roads of the CG and fog the whole property. Scary stuff.
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Old 03-05-2016, 11:48 AM   #6
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Can't help you with the bugs. We summer in Northern, WI just a mile from the UP border. You use lots of repellent. Check out some natural DIY fly repellents you can find online. The one with water and a penny in a baggie works a little.

Be sure to get to the the Porkies!!! It's gorgeous. Great trails. Did a 3 day, 30 mile circle hike with my daughter and my dog. Camped on Lake Superior and Lake in the Clouds. Great time!!
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Old 03-05-2016, 12:09 PM   #7
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Went to UP & camped one week in August 1998? Sat outside each & every day watching a horse clinic & can't remember any bug problems at all!! Of course memory isn't that great anymore!
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Old 03-05-2016, 12:18 PM   #8
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I lived in the U.P. for several years and have the scars to prove it. Black flies are horrible at the beginning of the summer. Mosquitos are a problem until there is a hard freeze. Black flies like to bite around cuffs, collars and behind your ears. Deet works for both. Don't let the bugs stop you. I loved living there (in the summer). The winters can be brutal. My last winter there we received 360+ inches of snow. Have a great time and remember to take the bug spray.
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Old 03-05-2016, 01:27 PM   #9
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We have had a run of no see ums in Florida in the past couple of weeks, probably because of all the rain. Sand fleas are a different strain of no see ums. We had the same problem in Canada in the past. They are nearly invisible and nasty biting little creatures. Both males and females bite, but the females go for blood. The odd thing is that I was getting so many bites, I started to get rashes. Hydrocortisone 1% cream (something we always carry) will sooth the itch for bites and skin rashes. Strangely enough, DW never got a bite. Hmmm.

I bring this up because they are "bugs" much like pigmy mosquitoes. Doing some research, I ran across this stuff from Australia called TTO (Tea Tree Oil concentrate). There are several thousand reviews on Amazon and the average rating is over 4 stars. So I delved a little deeper into the reviews.

TTO can not be taken internally. For most applications it must be very diluted to a few drops. There are multiple uses that I won't expound on, but I do want to bring up a few:
* TTO is a natural bug repellent. A few drops mixed with coconut oil and applied to the body works as a natural insect repellent. Skin So Soft diluted in water marginally worked, but they must have changed the formula.
* A few drops of TTO mixed with water, or added to dish soap, is a sanitizer and repels spiders, ants, other bugs indoors.
* It can be sprayed on screens to keep bugs from entering. No see ums are small enough to get through a screen.
* TTO can also be mixed with hair soap and used in bathing.
* It can be used as a laundry freshener.
* Full strength from an eye dropper onto an embedded tick will make the tick back out. Trying to remove a tick with tweezers can leave pieces of the tick under the skin to infect. This is really an exceptional use of TTO.

TTO is said to have a camphor odor initially. I have used Deet to repel ticks and mosquitoes and that is not a pleasant odor.

I should be getting a 4 oz bottle of TTO with an eye dropper today and it will be an interesting experiment. By the way, DW is an avid tea drinker-not sure that has anything to do with why she is not getting bites. Please drop a post if you have had any experience with TTO-good or bad.

Yah, I know, another snake oil story. However, there are natural products that do work. The Indians had theirs and the tribesman had theirs. Some of it was in the spirits and some actually worked.
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Old 03-05-2016, 02:35 PM   #10
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I live in the Upper Peninsula and the reputation of the insects is worse than the reality. Indeed there are some black flies in May and June, and other than that not much more than mosquitoes and a few horseflies at times. Good insect spray will probably be all you need and when I camp outside long term I usually keep a bug zapper plugged in and/or use some citron buckets and candles.

We will be camping for the entire season this year at Pioneer Trail Park in Gladstone, MI (Near Escanaba).

I hope you enjoy your foray into Yooperland

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