Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Bay Furnace....Continued

We are enjoying our trip into new territory. So far the weather has been nice...cool and no rain. Saturday, August 24, we drove to Marquette, Michigan. On Saturday, they had a craft/farmer's market downtown. We were in luck because this Saturday they were also having a harbor festival. This was one of the better farmer's markets I have visited. Unfortunately, I didn't need any fresh fruits or vegetables. Bob and I did, however, eat a lemon blueberry scone for breakfast. Then I saw an unusual fruit that I had to try. It was a husk cherry. It looks like a small tomatillo, but the fruit is yellow with the taste of a tomato and pineapple combined. They are good for snacking and also for salsa.
Marquette is famous for its ore. This building on the water, an ore dock, was to fill boats with ore to be shipped around the great lakes area. Train tracks used to run up to the ore dock to unload ore from nearby mines.
At the harbor festival, we went to the old car show. I can't believe I didn't take a picture of my favorite sky blue Ford Thunderbird. But I did get this Ranchero....my brother used to own one.
And who could resist this old beauty?
After lunch in Marquette, it was time to head back to Bay Furnace. We were schedule to take a sunset cruise to view Pictured Rocks National Seashore. This was the boat for our excursion.
Our first stop was this old lighthouse on Grand Isle. From a distance it resembled a church. It was hard to believe that in its heyday it housed the lighthouse keeper, his wife, and their twelve children!

As we cruised, we saw a lot of kayak tours. It was the perfect weather for touring Arch Rock in a kayak.
This is the first time we saw kayaks launched and retrieved from a boat. Maybe on our next visit, we will try this.
 The cruise showed us what we couldn't see from our hikes, as a lot of the rocks were below cliffs.

Sunday, Bob and I hiked to Au Sable Lighthouse. There were two trailheads and we took the one that was deemed most scenic, it was also the longest. Our trailhead began at Log Slide Viewing Area and headed west along the coastline to the lighthouse. We could see the lighthouse from the trailhead and we knew there would be many ups and downs to reach it.
 The trail was part of North Country Trail which is the longest footpath in the United States.
 As we traveled to the lighthouse, Lake Superior with its rocky shore was on our right.
 We finally came around a corner and saw the lighthouse, the trees were so thick that we couldn't see it until we were almost on it!
 The first building near the shore held the fog horn apparatus.
From this building, we continued on to the lighthouse and were able to tour it. We went all the way to the top for the view. The dunes in the background are where we started this hike!
 Then it was time to travel down those 90 something steps to hike back to the log slide.
 Along the trail, there were many boardwalks and this crazy bridge that was definitely not level!
Traveling to the lighthouse we only saw one other hiker, but returning to the trailhead, we saw several groups that were hiking North Country Trail...they were headed to Au Sable Primitive Campground to spend the night.

Once we arrived back at our trailhead, we stopped to watch people slide down the STEEP dune. It takes less than a minute to slide down...but over an hour to climb back up!
 At the base of the dune, we saw a boat anchored, enjoying the beautiful day on Lake Superior.
 Bob and I continued to the car and then drove to Grand Marais, the end of Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. We visited the local pub/brewery, and then returned to Bay Furnace.

On Monday, we went with Larry and Connie on a day trip to Kitch Iti Kipi State Park. Kitch Iti Kipi is the largest natural spring in Michigan. This barge which is on a cable, takes you over the boil and to the other side.
 The water is a gorgeous blue/green and there are all sorts of trout swimming in the spring. No fishing is allowed in this park, so the fish are huge!
 It was a dreary day, but not cold.

 From Kitch Iti Kipi we continued on our sightseeing tour and visited Indian Lake State Park before stopping for lunch in a lakeside restaurant.

Tuesday was our last day at Bay Furnace, so Bob and I took advantage of another beautiful day to hike to Miner's Falls, Miner's Rock, and Miner's Beach.

Our first hike was to Miners Falls.
Along the trail we saw this tree with some strange roots...it must have been started on a nurse log that is no longer there.
 The falls were flowing pretty good, there was rain the night before we hiked.
 Our next hike was to Miners Rock. First we viewed the rock from an overlook...
 Then we got as close as the trail would let us. The rock and hikers are protected....there is no climbing allowed as the rock is fragile.
 Then it was on to Miners Beach.
The trail followed North Country Trail until that trail continued east and we headed for the beach. Yes, there were boardwalks on this trail as well.
As we were approaching the beach, we saw one of the Pictured Rocks boats heading back to town.
Miners River flows into the lake near the beach.
There were quite a few people on the trail. We talked to one couple who winter in Florida and have a home in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Another young couple was having trouble reading their trail map and we explained how to follow the trail to the beach as another man and his teenagers who missed the beach told them you couldn't get to the lake on this trail.

We enjoyed our time at Bay Furnace and would like to return to do more of the activities offered in this part of Michigan.

Wednesday would be moving day...on to Sault Ste. Marie!

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