"Of all the paths you take in life make sure a few of them are dirt" US Forest Sevice

Showing posts with label Michigan UP. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Michigan UP. Show all posts

Friday, August 25, 2017

Upper Michigan

Heading North

Hauling our home on wheels around on these bumpy roads can be hard on it at times. One of the tires on the trailer was  not wearing well. We made a stop in Traverse City at Discount Tires and they  replaced it in no time. We headed towards Mackinaw City.
Before leaving Maine, our awning's motor quit working in the out position. Mike climbed the ladder and used the drill to manually bring it in. We found an RV service place in the next town that replaced the motor and were lucky enough to have it still under warranty. Six weeks later in Michigan, it quit working again. We will now wait until we get back to Colorado or Arizona to see what the problem is.
  The rain was falling pretty hard as we left Lake Leelanau heading north.

Mackinaw City

 We had considered taking a ferry to MacKinnac Island for a bike ride. Once we saw the number of people boarding the ferries every 15-30 minutes, we changed our minds and decided to enjoy the area where we were. That island has to be too congested for us. The campground is located on the shore of Lake Huron overlooking the Mackinaw Bridge. One afternoon, we spent sitting along
the shore of Lake Huron reading, listening to the waves and seagulls and watching the ferries, kayakers and  barges hauling iron ore, grains and limestone.

The UP

The winds were calming down quite a bit as we made our exodus to the UP (Upper Peninsula) by way of the "bridge".
There are many lighthouses along not only the Great Lakes but also the rivers and waterways.

 Michigan has so many rails to trails paths, most straight but go for many miles through treed canopies. We didn't stop for long with all of those mosquitos and bugs for encouragement to keep moving.

We had a great sunset one evening.

Tahquamenon Falls State Park, Michigan

Two years ago, when we were planning our trip to Michigan's UP, our friend, Matt, from the Colorado Springs Cycle Club told us to visit Tahquamenon Falls. We didn't make it quite that far then. This time, we were only 60 miles from the state park and had plenty of time to make the stop. It is in the northeast section of the UP without internet, TV and basically in the middle of a forest.

The Lower Falls are a half mile from our camp site. In the quiet morning, we could hear their rumble through the woods. The water was an interesting rust color caused by the tannins leached from the cedars. They are also called "root beer falls" because of the color. 
 There are boat rentals at the base of the falls that can be taken across the river to the island.

 I tried a pastie (a UP specialty) again and still think they are awful even with gravy. I don't think I will do that again.

Friday, September 4, 2015

Keweenaw Peninsula and Copper Harbor, Michigan

Our mountain bikes weren't doing very well on the rack we had on back of the trailer with the rough roads. Mike was able to find a bike shop on the way between Bayfield, WI and Copper Harbor, MI that had the rack that he wanted and were willing to hold it for us. We picked it up in a  little town with lots of traffic. Once we got to our campground, he found that the new bike rack was missing 2 bolts and no place to buy them here. The campground manager was going by a hardware store in the morning and offered to pick them up for us. They were perfect and much appreciated.  
Lots of murals on buildings on our drive to Michigan.

The black lab was so happy to be in the water since the day was very hot and humid. His owner couldn't get him to come out of the lake.

Lake Superior

In Copper Harbor there are more bikes than cars on the roads and none are locked up when unattended. There is a bike wash but no car wash.  The post office opens between 12-3pm. When I asked if we had mail, he dug around in boxes and said "Here it is". 

Lake Fannie Hooe where we have our morning coffee and tea.

A falcon landed in front of us as we were walking to town. No picture.

This area is rated in the top 5 in the US. So glad we came. Much of it is over our heads but beautifully maintained and lots for our level of riding. The Bell's Beer Mtn Bike fest is Labor Day weekend.
We enjoyed the trails here. The humidity was so high and warm that our clothes were soaked when we got done. Not much air moves down on the paths in the trees.

We decided to get out and try the mountain bike trails before the racers arrive for the mountain bike enduro race this weekend.  They were great trails that lots of work had been done on. I felt a little uncomfortable on the bridges since they were narrow but did fine.

Some of the sugar maples are changing color.

Copper Harbor lighthouse

The chokecherries are ready to be picked.

Monastery in Eagle River

The monks of Poor Rock Abbey sell jams, jellies and bakery items.
Red Crested woodpecker

 Contemplating the canal between Hunter's Point and the island
I need to get off this rock

View from Hunter's Point
A foggy morning but had to get this lighthouse. It is kind of neat to wake up in the morning and hear the foghorn.

We were told this was a great hike by someone we didn't know while mountain biking. It took several people giving us instructions as we got closer. Turn down the private road, drive until there is a big hill down, trail head parking on left, (it was on the right), the trailhead said sanctuary, .75 miles down the path and walking around a gate, we found this sign. No phone service or 4G but we had a GPS and bug spray.

When we go to the overlook, all we could see is fog.
Took a hike in the Old Growth white pines.

No thanks

and thimbleberries
Lake  Fannie Hooe is upper right with Lake Superior to the left.

One month on the road and so glad we went after our dream. When we started we weren't sure how long this would last. Now that we are "out there", even with little hiccups, we want to keep going. When I buy or do things, I always think about the cost either in dollars, time or stress and ask myself "Is it worth the cost". I would say "Heck yeah!"