Our 425 mile trek eastward took us across Wisconsin and into Michigan’s beautiful Upper Peninsula. Our first stop was the Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park near Ontonagon. These 60,000 acres have been relatively untouched since the park was established in 1945. My specific goal was to visit the popular Lake of the Clouds overlook. The view took in not only the lake, but miles and miles of virgin timber. Amazing.
We continued east and spent the night in Marquette, a good-sized city on the Lake Superior shore. Thanks to a tip from my daughter-in-law, we made a critically important stop at the Jilbert Dairy and Ice Cream Parlour…a Marquette landmark not to be missed! I chose a single-scoop Moose Trax sundae with hot fudge. Mmmm mmmm good!
We followed the M-28 Highway the next day, winding up in Sault Ste. Marie, my favorite location for ship watching. The Soo Locks on the St. Marys River are critically important to raise/lower ships the 21-foot difference between the levels of Lake Superior and Lake Huron. Lakers, Salties, pleasure craft of all kinds and even cruise ships must utilize these locks.
It is always fun to hear the standard ship salute—one long and two short blasts—as these huge ships pass each other.
I use a free app on my phone, Marine Tracker, to see where the ships are located near the Soo and how soon I can see them come by. I move between four locations on either side of the locks, so its rare for me to miss one. Some folks may think I’m nuts, but I really enjoy it.
We spent about a week in the Sault Ste. Marie area before heading south and on home. A very enjoyable trip for sure.