(Note: Just in case you were wondering, the dates below were the actual dates that the locations were visited)
9/22 Pictured Rocks National Shoreline
Upper Peninsula, Munising, Michigan
Pictured Rocks is a place that I’ve been wanting to visit for a few years after hearing about it from a friend. It’s known for camping, fishing, kayaking and hiking. The shores of Lake Superior are amazing and the timing was right for a visit on the way to the sugar beet harvest. Lake Superior is the largest fresh water lake in the world, and is bigger than the combined states in New England. The shores run along Michigan, Wisconsin and Minnesota, as well as Canada. At 31,700 sq. miles, this feels more like a sea than a lake. This is also the lake where the Edmond Fitzgerald ship sunk during a storm.
For two days, the weather was cloudy with a little rain, but that was OK. Pictured Rocks is very popular and Munising is a quaint little town with some shops and lots of fishing. I spent most of the time hiking and chasing waterfalls and also booked a boat cruise to see the rocks. This is really the best way to view the multi colored rocks that run along the shoreline.
The first day was spent hiking trails and I went to Chapel Rock. What a beautiful view of the water! It turns out that one of the Michigan state coins has an image of this iconic rock. How cool is that? It inspired me to start collecting state coins. What a geek I am.
It took a while to find the boat dock for the tour and I was lucky that I didn’t miss boarding. The tour was 2 hours and the captain told stories about the history and and made corny jokes. The water was a deep teal, a stark contrast to the red, orange and yellow shoreline. The striped colors are different minerals that have seeped in to the soft sandstone cliffs over millennia. At 50 to 200 feet high, they are quite a sight! I hung out on the deck to take pictures most of the time and we were all crowded in, but we took turns as best we could to take snaps. I stopped in the gift shop after the tour and checked out Yooper Pies, a kind of candy bar with nuts and chocolate. I didn’t buy one, trying to watch the sugar. Gift shops are always a fun place to visit.
Again, this is one of those places that pictures describe the best. I fell in love with Lake Superior!
Onward to the sugar beet harvest.