Yooper Bits C-E


Camp or Cottage: Above the bridge, dwellings in the woods are “camps.” Below the bridge they are cottages.

Camp Deer: Years ago deer camps were entitled to shoot a community deer to be used as food while hunters were in camp, usually for two weeks. This allowance discontinued in Michigan many years ago, but continues in some other states.

Canadian Crap Kicker: See Alberta Clipper

Canuck: Slang for a Canadian. (See also, Hoser and Funnelhead)

Cannibal: Term for an individual who comes from a particularly remote and lawless area. Cannibals are said to eat their young.

Cape: The hide covering the head, neck and fore-shoulders of a game animal, often removed for a trophy.

Catch Lumber: get it from the mill or lumber yard.

Carp River College: Yooperese for Marquette Prison.

Catch and Release…into to grease: Yooper fishermen are generally meat fishermen, not catch-and-release types.

Cedar Swamp: Look for tamarack (larch), black spruce, northern white cedar, or white pine, balsam fir, eastern hemlock and a few hardwoods like black ash. The state, by some estimates has 4.4 million acres of cedar swamps and if you’ve ever been lost in one, it can seem even larger. These swamps tend to have overgrown canopies, with a lot of rotting slash on the ground and not much else growing down there. It’s difficult to navigate by sun or stars when you are in a cedar swamp, so make sure you have a compass and know how to use it.

Cement Highway: Any hardtop road. E.g. Cement highway Two = US 2.

Chalk: Woodcock feces.

Cheesehead or Cheesie: A Wisconsin native.

Chinese Rack: Any large set of deer antlers with a large number of points. Also may refer generally to any asymmetrical or nontypical set of antlers.

Chinook: A warm spring wind, or a king salmon.

Chook: See Toque – wool cap.

Choppers:? Gauntlet-length mittens used in deep winter and heavy snow conditions. Outers made of deer or moose hide, with wool inserts. Often made of durable moose-hide.

CHP: Crawling Home Puker. Dangerous in winter time.

Chrome: Silver steelhead fresh into the river to spawn. Some steelhead come up Michigan rivers in December as salmon runs are ending, but the main runs are in the spring, after the walleye runs.

Citiot: Self-explanatory

Copper Country: Term for the Keeweenaw Peninsula and area where copper was mined in the last century.

Copper Country Shuffle: Slipping and sliding on the ice. Term can be used for the typical motion of people in any of the snowy Yooper cities or towns.

Crawler Gear: 4WD

Crimpy Day: Trapper term for a very, very cold one.

Cripple: A wounded bird.

Council of Three Fires: Historical confederation of Michigan’s three largest Native American tribes: Chippewa (Ojibwa), Ottawa (Odawa), and Pottawotomi.

Cousin Jack: Slang for immigrant from Cornwall, who came to the copper mines and were experts in underground tunneling.

Cudighy: A spicy sausage found mostly in the western U.P.

Curly Wolf: Trapper term for a man who can talk the talk and walk the walk.


Da: The

Damn Near Russian: What some Yooper citizens claim DNR stands for. Another version is Department of No Results.

Dance Hall: Place where grouse or woodcock do mating dance.

Darker Than the Inside of a Cow: CO term for really dark, starless night.

Da Yoopers: Famous U.P. musical group.

Deadfall: Tree blown down by wind or taken down by ice.

Deer Pee: Common term for commercially available chemical compounds meant to mimick a doe in estrus and, therefore, attract the interest of rutting bucks.

Deer Rifle: The classic was the lever-action Model 90 30-30 Winchester. The typical Michigan deer rifle for the U.P featured a short barrel so it could be safely carried through heavy, dense brush. Also see Brush Gun.

Dem: Them

Detroilet: Detroit

Did a Jimmy or Did a Hoffa: Disappeared without a trace.

Diggins: Trapper term for home.

Dirtroit: Slang for the city.

Dollarass or Dollarbutt: Yooperese for? Northern Flicker ( Colaptes auratug), a kind of woodpecker.

Doorwall: Sliding glass door.

Dose: Those

Drift: A mine tunnel

Driving Deer: A group hunt where some hunters walk and others wait in ambush for spooked animals to come through.

Downstate: Refers to all geography below the Mackinac Bridge.

Drumlin: Small, oval, hummocky hill formed from the detritus of a retreating glacier.

Dumpling Dust: Flour. Term from trappers who mixed dough by pouring water into a depression in the flour bag, causing small puffs of dust. Term and practice still used in some old family hunting camps.


Ecoyuppie: A small group of environmentally conscious, usually young folks who move to the U.P. and tend to focus on canoes, kayaks, mountain biking, hiking and camping year-round. Many of them are highly accomplished outdoors.

Eh: Major word in the Yooper lexicon, a word and sound that serve as period and question mark, eh. In some parts of the Yoop, eh may be prounouned hey, eh, hey?

Englered: From the name of former long-time republican governor John Engler, who is credited with bankrupting the state and destroying social services. The term means botched, mishandled.

Eye: A walleye. (member of perch family. Called pickerel in Canada and some eastern states)


ELF Line: Now defunct Extra Low Frequency system used by the U.S.Navy. The system, also called Project Sanguine and Project Seafarer, used no wires and utilized the properties of ore deposits to transmit launch orders to ballistic missile submarines. The Elf Line was in part in southern Marquette and northern Dickinson Counties in Michigan. Others parts of the system were in Wisconsin. ELF waves radiate continuously, through earth and sea water and reach around the world, but the system was slow and one way, available only to nuclear-loaded Trident submarines submerged deep in the oceans. The creation of the system raised a lot of concerns about effects to the environment and human health and created a series of protests. About 500 arrests were made during the demonstrations. The system is not outmoded by other communications methods.

Escanaba in Da Moonlight:? Hilarious play and film by Jeff Daniels about Yoopers in deer camp.

Esky: Slang for city of Escanaba (Delta County).

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