Category Archives: Michigan

Michigan Part III: Marquette

When we left Wisconsin, we drove north along the shore of Green Bay until we crossed into the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Our destination was Marquette, the most populated city in the U.P. with only about 25,000 citizens. I think I will make it official and say that this was one of my favorite stops on our trip so far! We stayed at a municipal park and campground on the north side of town and the location was perfect! We had access to walking trails in all directions, and we could get almost anywhere in town via a 30-minute bike ride. The town was charming and historic, the natural scenery was spectacular, we were on the shores of Lake Superior, and the people were very friendly. The locals up there are called Yoopers. They are a hearty, durable, and good-natured bunch. I guess you would have to be in order to survive one of their winters! Everyone was extremely active and fit. People were out on the trails walking, running or bicycling regardless of weather conditions. All cars had some sort of sports gear strapped to the roofs (kayaks, bikes, paddle boards). Everyone seemed to be on a quest to enjoy the summer weather at all costs. The weather while we were there at the end of June was cool and crisp. It didn’t get dark until after 10PM. We stayed very busy because there was so much to do and see. To this blog post I am attaching more photos than I have in any other post since our trip began because everywhere we looked we saw something beautiful or interesting.

A view of our site at the Marquette Tourist Park.

A view of our site at the Marquette Tourist Park.

Piper did not know about chip monks before we visited Marquette. He now has a new obsession.

Piper did not know about chip monks before we visited Marquette. He now has a new obsession.

The Dead River on the northern boundary of our campground.

The Dead River on the northern boundary of our campground.

As we were arriving at our spot at the Marquette Tourist Park, we had to wait for this baby skunk to cross the road in front of us. There were six of these cute and scary critters running around our side of the campground. I was terrified one of the dogs would get sprayed. What the heck would we do with a skunked dog in this motor coach! As it turns out, the dogs did not get sprayed... but one of the campground workers did while she was mowing the grass. Eventually, they were all trapped and relocated to a more remote recreation area.

As we were arriving at our spot at the Marquette Tourist Park, we had to wait for this baby skunk to cross the road in front of us. There were six of these cute and scary critters running around our side of the campground. I was terrified one of the dogs would get sprayed. What the heck would we do with a skunked dog in this motor coach! As it turns out, the dogs did not get sprayed… but one of the campground workers did while she was mowing the grass. Eventually, they were all trapped and relocated to a more remote recreation area.

This is the view from most of our walks in Marquette.

This is the view from most of our walks in Marquette.

The Wooden Nickel is a fun dive bar near the University. We stopped in for happy hour one evening and had fun absorbing all the signs and pictures that adorned every inch of the walls and ceiling.

The Wooden Nickel is a fun dive bar near the University. We stopped in for happy hour one evening and had fun absorbing all the signs and pictures that adorned every inch of the walls and ceiling.

We saw a fox on one of our walks!

We saw a fox on one of our walks!

Some sandy beach in Marquette.

A sandy beach in Marquette.

I happened to be cruising around Presque Isle when this sea plane landed near the harbor. He taxied up the boat ramp and dropped off his passenger. Then the turned around, went back into the water and flew away. What a fun sight to see!

I happened to be cruising around Presque Isle when this sea plane landed near the harbor. He taxied up the boat ramp and dropped off his passenger. Then he turned around, went back into the water and flew away. What a fun sight to see!

The sea plane taxis out of the Presque Isle Harbor, preparing for take-off.

The sea plane taxis out of the Presque Isle Harbor, preparing for take-off.

 

Pasties are a Michigan thing. They might even be a more exclusive U.P. thing. I first learned about them when we visited Mackinac early last fall. Pie crust filled with ground meat, diced potatoes and diced rutabaga. The ultimate comfort food. Beware though... they are pronounced paastie (soft A). When I ordered my first one, I pronounced it more like what one would wear if dancing with a pole. Everyone knew I was a tourist at the counter. Before we left Marquette I stocked my freezer with 4 of them. Simple and delicious.

Pasties are a Michigan thing. They might even be a more exclusive U.P. thing. I first learned about them when we visited Mackinac early last fall. Pie crust filled with ground meat, diced potatoes and diced rutabaga. The ultimate comfort food. Beware though… they are pronounced paastie (soft A). When I ordered my first one, I pronounced it more like what one would wear if dancing with a pole. Everyone knew I was a tourist at the counter. Before we left Marquette I stocked my freezer with 4 of them. Simple and delicious.

Mikey watching golf on a Sunday afternoon.

Mikey watching golf on a Sunday afternoon.

Live performance art at the downtown Farmer's Market.

Live performance art at the downtown Farmer’s Market.

There was one food truck in Marquette. I never got a chance to sample the fare, which was unfortunate. He was parked all over town - different locations on different days. Sometimes as I was driving through town, I would see folks lined up and waiting for the truck to arrive so they could order lunch. Must be pretty good food if your customers sit and wait for you to drive up and serve them!

There was one food truck in Marquette. I never got a chance to sample the fare, which was unfortunate. He was parked all over town – different locations on different days. Sometimes as I was driving through town, I would see folks lined up and waiting for the truck to arrive so they could order lunch. Must be pretty good food if your customers sit and wait for you to drive up and serve them!

We actually went to church with the Methodists in Marquette, but I stopped into this beautiful cathedral on a couple of occasions to light candles for friends and family (as well as for us to continue our adventure with safe travels and positive outlooks).

We actually went to church with the Methodists in Marquette, but I stopped into this beautiful cathedral on a couple of occasions to light candles for friends and family (as well as for us to continue our adventure with safe travels and positive outlooks).

The rail cars carry Iron Ore from the mines west of Marquette. When they reach the docks, the rail cars are emptied into the ships below. The most frequent destinations for the ships when they leave with a full load are Cleveland, Detroit, and Chicago.

The rail cars carry Iron Ore from the mines west of Marquette. When they reach the docks, the rail cars are emptied into the ships below. The most frequent destinations for the ships when they leave with a full load are Cleveland, Detroit, and Chicago.

A ship at the 100-year old Iron Ore Pocket Dock.

A ship at the 100-year old Iron Ore Pocket Dock.

Presque Isle is a municipal park on the north side of Marquette. You can see why it is considered the jewel of Marquette.

Presque Isle is a municipal park on the north side of Marquette. You can see why it is considered the jewel of Marquette.

Lake Superior or Gitche Gumee. With more than 10% of the world's fresh water, its 3 QUADRILLION gallons are home to 80 different species of fish and the resting place of 350 shipwrecks. Its area spans 31,280 square miles - 350 miles from east to west. Average depth is 483 feet, and its deepest point is 1,333 feet.

Lake Superior or Gitche Gumee. With more than 10% of the world’s fresh water, its 3 QUADRILLION gallons are home to 80 different species of fish and the resting place of 350 shipwrecks. Its area spans 31,280 square miles – 350 miles from east to west. Average depth is 483 feet, and its deepest point is 1,333 feet.

The waters off of Presque Isle.

The waters off of Presque Isle.

World's largest glacial copper. Weighs in at 28.2 tons. A sign next to it implores visitors and locals to support the campaign to preserve this massive rock for public display.

World’s largest glacial copper. Weighs in at 28.2 tons. A sign next to it implores visitors and locals to support the campaign to preserve this massive rock for public display.

A nice family of geese strolling along the bike path on a sunny afternoon.

A nice family of geese strolling along the bike path on a sunny afternoon.

Piper was on guard at all times he was outside. Between the squirrels, skunks, and chip monks... the poor boy never got any down time.

Piper was on guard at all times he was outside. Between the squirrels, skunks, and chip monks… the poor boy never got any down time.

A big trout that Mike caught near Wichita, Kansas - out of the brine and ready for the smoker.

A big trout that Mike caught near Wichita, Kansas – out of the brine and ready for the smoker.

Mike's make-shift smoker. Works amazingly well!

Mike’s make-shift smoker. Works amazingly well!

The trout is smoked!

The trout is smoked!

Smoked trout dinner.

Smoked trout dinner.

The marina at the edge of downtown Marquette.

The marina at the edge of downtown Marquette.

Lake Superior rules the weather in Marquette. We were exploring the bars and restaurants in downtown when a fog rolled into the southern part of the city center. It was crystal clear where we were standing, but visibility was only 1-foot three blocks down the street.

Lake Superior rules the weather in Marquette. We were exploring the bars and restaurants in downtown when a fog rolled into the southern part of the city center. It was crystal clear where we were standing, but visibility was only 1-foot three blocks down the street.

What is better that surprise crawfish at dinner? Live southern music to go along with our food!

What is better than surprise crawfish at dinner? Live southern music to go along with our food!

We were in Marquette during "Art Week". A surprise visit from the local barbershop quartet made our dinner at Lagniappe that much more fun!

We were in Marquette during “Art Week”. A surprise visit from the local barbershop quartet made our dinner at Lagniappe that much more fun!

Interestingly enough, one of the best restaurants in Marquette turns out to be Lagniappe Cajun Eatery. (Their radio commercials boast 70 NON-spicy recipes for the yoopers)! ha ha. You might be able to tell that we went a little crazy getting our Cajun fix at dinner that evening. First of all, we were shocked to learn they had live crawfish (flown in every Wednesday). The mudbugs were $12.00 per pound, so we were conservative and ordered just 2 pounds. Then to our order we added blackened alligator, hush puppies, fried cheese grits and red beans & rice - all extra spicy!

Interestingly enough, one of the best restaurants in Marquette turns out to be Lagniappe Cajun Eatery. (Their radio commercials boast 70 NON-spicy recipes for the yoopers)! ha ha. You might be able to tell that we went a little crazy getting our Cajun fix at dinner that evening. First of all, we were shocked to learn they had live crawfish (flown in every Wednesday). The mudbugs were $12.00 per pound, so we were conservative and ordered just 2 pounds. Then to our order we added blackened alligator, hush puppies, fried cheese grits and red beans & rice – all extra spicy!

Mount Marquette Ski Area. (The scenic overlook we were in search of was actually on the OTHER side of the mountain).

Mount Marquette Ski Area. (The scenic overlook we were in search of was actually on the OTHER side of the mountain).

I heard about a scenic overlook on Mount Marquette and convinced Mike to go find it with me. The expedition turned into a bit of a scavenger hunt. At first, we went to the wrong side of the mountain. I got better directions from a lady working in the ski area. We drove across town and found the obscure road (with no signage) that took us up to the top. I think the unpaved mountain road literally went STRAIGHT UP. I happened to be driving, so when we reached the overlook the engine smelled like it was on fire. I asked Mike if it was our car that was indeed smoking. He confirmed that yes, "you are just hard on cars". After we looked around and took some photos of the beautiful view, he enthusiastically offered to drive us back down to level land! I'm not sure which one of us was more frightened on the way to the top... me in the driver's seat - or him on the passenger's side.

I heard about a scenic overlook on Mount Marquette and convinced Mike to go find it with me. The expedition turned into a bit of a scavenger hunt. At first, we went to the wrong side of the mountain. I got better directions from a lady working in the ski area. We drove across town and found the obscure road (with no signage) that took us up to the top. I think the unpaved mountain road literally went STRAIGHT UP. I happened to be driving, so when we reached the overlook the engine smelled like it was on fire. I asked Mike if it was our car that was indeed smoking. He confirmed that yes, “you are just hard on cars”. After we looked around and took some photos of the beautiful view, he enthusiastically offered to drive us back down to level land! I’m not sure which one of us was more frightened on the way to the top… me in the driver’s seat – or him on the passenger’s side.

Looking west from Mount Marquette.

Looking west from Mount Marquette.

The swimming section of the lake at Marquette Tourist Park. The temperatures were too chilly to get in the water during the 2 weeks of our visit.

The swimming section of the lake at Marquette Tourist Park. The temperatures were too chilly to get in the water during the 2 weeks of our visit.

Iron Ore is a big deal in the Upper Peninsula. All the rocks are black.

Iron Ore is a big deal in the Upper Peninsula. All the rocks are black.

One of the exhibits in the Maritime Museum illustrated how the coast guard rescued crew members from ships that  wrecked just off the coastline.

One of the exhibits in the Maritime Museum illustrated how the coast guard rescued crew members from ships that wrecked just off the coastline.

A lighthouse lense in the Marquette Maritime Museum.

A lighthouse lense in the Marquette Maritime Museum.

McMarty's Cove Beach, from the lighthouse. This is a great picture, aside from the power line running through the middle of it!

McMarty’s Cove Beach, from the lighthouse. This is a great picture, aside from the power line running through the middle of it!

A view of the northern part of Marquette - snapped from the shore by the lighthouse. You can see the Superior Dome, the Power Plant, and Presque Isle. The Ore Docks are there too, just too small to see.

A view of the northern part of Marquette – snapped from the shore by the lighthouse. You can see the Superior Dome, the Power Plant, and Presque Isle. The Ore Docks are there too, just too small to see.

The only reason I insisted that we buy a ticket for a guided tour of the Marquette Lighthouse was because I thought that ticket would get us access to walk out onto the breakwater. As it turns out - the Federal No Trespassing Sign at the beginning of the path is just for show...the locals do not pay attention to the barrier.  I was able to walk out onto the breakwater for free. However, the lighthouse tour turned out to be very interesting. If we had not bought our tickets, we would not have been able to go out to the end of this catwalk and see the view from a different perspective.

The only reason I insisted that we buy a ticket for a guided tour of the Marquette Lighthouse was because I thought that ticket would get us access to walk out onto the breakwater. As it turns out – the Federal No Trespassing Sign at the beginning of the path is just for show…the locals do not pay attention to the barrier. I was able to walk out onto the breakwater for free. However, the lighthouse tour turned out to be very interesting. If we had not bought our tickets, we would not have been able to go out to the end of this catwalk and see the view from a different perspective.

A full campground at the Marquette Tourist Park.

A full campground at the Marquette Tourist Park.

A view from the beginning of my walk out to the edge of the Marquette breakwater. The only other person I saw that morning was just coming back to land as I was heading out. As we passed, he looked at me and said 'enjoy'. It was at that moment that I realized I had the place all to myself on that beautiful morning. It was kind of like church in nature instead of in a building. I'm glad he took the time to point out the obvious, because I don't think I would have clued in to how special the moment was without his insight.

A view from the beginning of my walk out to the edge of the Marquette breakwater. The only other person I saw that morning was just coming back to land as I was heading out. As we passed, he looked at me and said ‘enjoy’. It was at that moment that I realized I had the place all to myself on that beautiful morning. It was kind of like church in nature instead of in a building. I’m glad he took the time to point out the obvious, because I don’t think I would have clued in to how special the moment was without his insight.

Sunday morning in Marquette.

Sunday morning in Marquette.

A full view of Marquette from the far end of the breakwater that surrounds the city's harbor.

A full view of Marquette from the far end of the breakwater that surrounds the city’s harbor.

These two ducks and I had the harbor all to ourselves on the Sunday morning that I walked out to the edge of the breakwater.

These two ducks and I had the harbor all to ourselves on the Sunday morning that I walked out to the edge of the breakwater.

Our last campfire in Michigan.

Our last campfire in Michigan.

The Superior Dome, which opened as the "world’s largest wooden dome" on September 14, 1991, is a domed stadium on the campus of Northern Michigan University. I wonder how high the snow gets on the sides of the buildings in the winter.  I don't think I would want to be there in person to find out.

The Superior Dome, which opened as the “world’s largest wooden dome” on September 14, 1991, is a domed stadium on the campus of Northern Michigan University. I wonder how high the snow gets on the sides of the buildings in the winter. I don’t think I would want to be there in person to find out.

A ship leaving the Ore Docks.

A ship leaving the Ore Docks.

By the time we get up and get moving (without rushing around) on travel days, it is usually around 11AM when we pull out of our site. Leaving Marquette, we had a five-hour drive to Duluth, MN. We were extra efficient that morning, and Mike started the engine at 9:45. Everything powered up like usual... and then the engine died. Mike got the manual out, and I took a short walk to try and stay out of the way while he did his trouble shooting. He couldn't identify any obvious solutions, so we ended up calling a Cummins Shop in the next town over. Lucky for us, they arrived to help us only 45 minutes after we placed the call. As it turns out it was a fuel-water sensor that Monaco had installed after the engine was built. The service man disconnected it for us and we were able to make the drive with no problems at all. Mike is still working on ordering a replacement, but we are not hindered until the new one is installed.

By the time we get up and get moving (without rushing around) on travel days, it is usually around 11AM when we pull out of our site. Leaving Marquette, we had a five-hour drive to Duluth, MN. We were extra efficient that morning, and Mike started the engine at 9:45. Everything powered up like usual… and then the engine died. Mike got the manual out, and I took a short walk to try and stay out of the way while he did his trouble shooting. He couldn’t identify any obvious solutions, so we ended up calling a Cummins Shop in the next town over. Lucky for us, they arrived to help us only 45 minutes after we placed the call. As it turns out it was a fuel-water sensor that Monaco had installed after the engine was built. The service man disconnected it for us and we were able to make the drive with no problems at all. Mike is still working on ordering a replacement, but we are not hindered until the new one is installed.

Michigan Part II: South Haven

Our second stop in Michigan was South Haven, a charming historic resort community on Lake Michigan at the southwestern edge of the state. We were about an hour south of Grand Rapids, about 30 minutes west of Kalamazoo, and about an hour north of South Bend, Indiana. The RV Park where we stayed was tiny, but in a perfect location. We were at the edge of Kal-Haven State Park, which is a 33 mile linear hiking and biking trail between South Haven and Kalamazoo. We were also within a short walking distance of the downtown area.

I think this was one of my favorite stops from our entire trip. There was so much to do and see, without ever getting in the car. The weather was nearly perfect every day with crisp temperatures and clear skies. The campground was safe and quiet. We were surrounded by beaches and boats. There were plenty of places for long dog walks. What more could you ask for?

We drove to South Bend one afternoon and explored the Notre Dame campus (which was beautiful). We also visited Warren Dunes State Park to the south of us. But mostly, we just enjoyed the quaint community of South Haven. We were here for two weeks, and I’m sad to say my Uncle Wayne lost his 15-year battle with cancer while at this location. I flew from Grand Rapids to Portland, Oregon for 5-days to attend the funeral and visit with family while Mike remained with the dogs and the Monaco.

Kal-Haven State Park Trail is a 33 mile trail between South Haven and Kalamazoo. With a trail like that outside of our back door, you can correctly assume the dogs got good exercise on this stop.

Kal-Haven State Park Trail is a 33 mile trail between South Haven and Kalamazoo. With a trail like that outside of our back door, you can correctly assume the dogs got good exercise on this stop.

The local boating community heads out to Lake Michigan to enjoy a wonderful sunset.

The local boating community heads out to Lake Michigan to enjoy a wonderful sunset.

This is a full view of our entire park. It was tiny, but in a terrific location.

This is a full view of our entire park. It was tiny, but in a terrific location.

Mike tried to fish in the Black River. This is the only thing he caught.

Mike tried to fish in the Black River. This is the only thing he caught.

I honestly did not expect to be taking long walks on the beach when we booked our reservation in South Haven.

I honestly did not expect to be taking long walks on the beach when we booked our reservation in South Haven.

When we weren't walking along the Kal-Haven Trail, our daily treks were to the Michigan Shore.

When we weren’t walking along the Kal-Haven Trail, our daily treks were to the Lake Michigan shore.

My cousin, Kevin, suggested we visit Warren Dunes State Park. Giant sand dunes at the lake shore is another thing I did not expect to see during our time in Michigan.

My cousin, Kevin, suggested we visit Warren Dunes State Park. Giant sand dunes at the lake shore is another thing I did not expect to see during our time in Michigan.

Those who know me well understand that I will never miss an opportunity to light a candle in a church setting. When we walked up to the Grotto on the Notre Dame campus, I asked Mike to hand over his entire wallet. (For the benefit of non-catholics... a small donation is usually recommended for each candle that is lit).

Those who know me well understand that I will never miss an opportunity to light a candle in a church setting. When we walked up to the Grotto on the Notre Dame campus, I asked Mike to hand over his entire wallet. (For the benefit of non-Catholics… a small donation is usually recommended for each candle that is lit).

 

A full view of the Grotto.

A full view of the Grotto.

Inside the Basilica at Notre Dame. One of the most beautiful churches I have been in... anywhere, ever.

Inside the Basilica at Notre Dame. One of the most beautiful churches I have been in… anywhere, ever.

Outside the Basilica. The sign by the door states that mass is scheduled 30 minutes after the end of each home game.

Outside the Basilica. The sign by the door states that mass is scheduled 30 minutes after the end of each home game. I thought that was sort of humorous.

The famous golden dome.

The famous golden dome.

I wish I would have had the chance to attend Mass inside this spectacular structure.

I wish I would have had the chance to attend Mass inside this spectacular structure.

An altar to Mother Mary inside the same church.

An altar to Mother Mary inside the same church.

This is the tunnel that the athletes run through before every Notre Dame home game. (I enjoyed my time in the Basilica, and Mike really liked seeing the stadium).

This is the tunnel that the athletes run through before every Notre Dame home game. (I enjoyed my time in the Basilica, and Mike really liked seeing the stadium).

The Michigan Theater is a working theater in downtown South Haven. I went to see a movie there one Saturday while Mike was on a college football overload. Can you believe I only paid $7 for popcorn, a coke, AND a ticket to a first-run movie!

The Michigan Theater is a working theater in downtown South Haven. I went to see a movie there one Saturday while Mike was on a college football overload. Can you believe I only paid $7 for popcorn, a coke, AND a ticket to a first-run movie!

It is always a good day when we get to have a fire during happy hour.

It is always a good day when we get to have a fire during happy hour.

We found a little dive bar on the water for drinks and lunch one warm and sunny Friday afternoon. The draw bridge was very active with boats passing through every few minutes.

We found a little dive bar on the water for drinks and lunch one warm and sunny Friday afternoon. The draw bridge was very active with boats passing through every few minutes.

Downtown South Haven was so cute. The area was full of busy restaurants, shops, salons, and other businesses.

Downtown South Haven was so cute. The area was full of busy restaurants, shops, salons, and other businesses.

Waterfront selfie.

Waterfront selfie.

The lighthouse where the Black River dumps into Lake Michigan.

The lighthouse where the Black River empties into Lake Michigan.

I mentioned our campground was literally at the edge of the Kal-Haven Trail. This was the first view we got to see each day when we took the dogs on their morning walk. This is also the spot where Mike went fishing.

I mentioned our campground was literally at the edge of the Kal-Haven Trail. This was the first view we got to see each day when we took the dogs on their morning walk. This is also the spot where Mike went fishing.

Michigan Part I: Durand

Our first stop here was near Flint, and about an hour east of Lansing, right on I-69. If we had all the time in the world, we would have done a different tour of Michigan. Many locals recommended, and I would concur, we should have done a trip along the outer boundaries of the entire hand. There was not enough time. Instead, our first introduction to the Great Lake State was a stint just under the thumb.

Our camp was awesome. We stayed in the RV section of a little weekend resort where people owned their tiny spot. The pad was concrete. The surrounding grass was lush and manicured. The water, sewer and electricity worked with no problems. There was no mud. Mike could play golf on the adjoining 9-hole golf course for $7. Little lakes dotted the interior of the park, providing a peaceful vista for long walks along the bordering asphalt paths.

The city of Flint was a bit depressed, and we never made it to Lansing. However, we did take an overnight daytrip up to the top of the hand to visit Mackinaw City and Mackinac Island. The four-hour trip was well worth the time and effort. I am putting Mackinac Island on the list of places to which we will return for a full-fledged extended vacation in the future.

The little 9-hole golf course surrounding our camp spot was right on an interstate Highway, but we didn't mind when looking at the peaceful view.

The little 9-hole golf course surrounding our camp spot was right on an interstate Highway, but we didn’t mind when looking at the peaceful view.

The dogs wanted to know more about this game of 'golf'. Mike played 18 holes one day, and sent me a text during his second loop around the nine holes... asked if the dogs and I wanted to join him. We followed him back to the clubhouse - all the while waiting for some sort of official-looking person to jump out and kick us off. The opposite occurred, everyone we encountered laughed and waved. Piper and Cessna think golf is great!

The dogs wanted to know more about this game of golf. Mike played 18 holes one day, and sent me a text during his second loop around the nine holes… asked if the dogs and I wanted to join him. We followed him back to the clubhouse – all the while waiting for some sort of official-looking person to jump out and kick us off. The opposite occurred, everyone we encountered laughed and waved. Piper and Cessna think golf is great!

I've previously mentioned Mike's fascination with geese.

I’ve previously mentioned Mike’s fascination with geese.

A view from a section of the walking path within our park.

A view from a section of the walking path within our park.

Private ponds within our park meant Mike didn't even need to get a Michigan fishing license on this stop.

Private ponds within our park meant Mike didn’t even need to get a Michigan fishing license on this stop.

The dogs were really ready to get out of the car after the four hours it took to drive to the top of the mitten, but they didn't complain.

The dogs were really ready to get out of the car after the four hours it took to drive to the top of the mitten, but they didn’t complain.

Good morning Lake Huron.

Good morning Lake Huron.

Our little hotel of beach cottages had a community fire pit on the beach... of which you can be sure we took full advantage!

Our little hotel of beach cottages had a community fire pit on the beach… of which you can be sure we took full advantage!

The Mackinac Bridge is currently the fifth longest suspension bridge in the world.

The Mackinac Bridge is currently the fifth longest suspension bridge in the world.

Our little cottage in Mackinaw City. The interior was quite dated. However, it was clean, they allowed 2 big dogs, and we were located ON the lake shore. Perfect for an overnight stay.

Our little cottage in Mackinaw City. The interior was quite dated. However, it was clean, they allowed 2 big dogs, and we were located ON the lake shore. Perfect for an overnight stay.

I continue to try and convince Mike we could do some sort of American adventure on a boat after we finish the Lower 48 in 48 Tour. This is the sort of dwelling I have in mind... hahahahahahahah.

I continue to try and convince Mike we could do some sort of American adventure on a boat after we finish the Lower 48 in 48 Tour. This is the sort of dwelling I have in mind… a girl can dream.

 

No cars on Mackinac Island. Only horses and bikes. So charming.

No cars on Mackinac Island. Only horses and bikes. So charming.

The historic for on Mackinac Island. The cannons were fired regularly, which Cessna didn't like so much.

The historic fort on Mackinac Island. The cannons were fired regularly, which Cessna didn’t like so much.

The local taxi on Mackinac Island. I was wishing the ferry would suddenly go on strike and we might just be stuck there - indefinitely.

The local taxi on Mackinac Island. I was wishing the ferry would suddenly go on strike and we might just be stuck there – indefinitely.

Sainte Anne Church, 1670. The Parish is the nation's oldest dedicated to St. Anne, and maintains baptismal records dating from April 1695. Spectacular.

Sainte Anne Church, 1670. The Parish is the nation’s oldest dedicated to St. Anne, and maintains baptismal records dating from April 1695. Spectacular.

We had a cocktail here on the patio of the Hotel Iroquois while we waited for the ferry that would return us to the mainland.

We had a cocktail here on the patio of the Hotel Iroquois while we waited for the ferry that would return us to the mainland.

The view of Mackinac Island as we approached from the ferry.

The view of Mackinac Island as we approached from the ferry.

The famous bridge, Big Mac.

The famous bridge, Big Mac.

Ferry selfie.

Ferry selfie.

Our spot at Holiday Shores Resort Campground. We were so excited for a concrete pad and thick grass. No mud!

Our spot at Holiday Shores Resort Campground. We were so excited for a concrete pad and thick grass. No mud!

A typical view from one of our daily walks within the campground.

A typical view from one of our daily walks within the campground.