2011 Michigan UP Lone Wolf Ride

Day 4 to Pictured Rocks

Day 4 (Monday) was a 288 mile day which brought be to Marquette and Pictured Rocks.

Day 4

The plan was to make pretty good time to Marquette, hang out there a bit, make pretty good time to Painted Rocks, set up camp mid-afternoon, then explore the area. That plan pretty much worked out.

I rode around Ishpeming a while. I found what I think was a wind turbine, and signs of the now-largely-gone mining industry:

Ishpeming, MI

Then, right up the road in Negaunee was Miner's Park. This trip was mostly about riding (~70%) and nature (~30%). Next time around I'm going to focus more on history, the industries that have been and gone, and geology. And riding. And a bit of nature.

Miner's Park in Negaunee, MI

Then a ride around Marquette, and a stop a coffee shop for a muffin and coffee. The girl I shared a table with had no idea I was flirting with her, the thought was apparently too foreign and disgusting to occur to her.

Marquette, MI

Oh, it just occurred to me why the girl didn't flirt back.

Then I got to Pictured Rocks

And rode the most excellent H58 looking for a campground

H-58 at Pictured Rocks

The campgrounds right on the lake get filled up quickly, but I got one at Kingston Lake that was just fine.

Kingston Lake campground

Then back on the road to see the sights.

Which, sadly, meant riding much more of this:

H-58 at Pictured Rocks

This road is clear and smooth, with sweeping turns the necessitate barely feathering the throttle, if that. My tires made new noises as we sailed through them. Not squeals, but noises letting me know lateral load was being applied. It was excellent. Did I mention that already?

The Pictured Rocks themselves are stunning. And I couldn't see much of them from the shore. The way to see it apparently is to rent a boat or take a boat cruise. Next time I'll do that. This time I had other things planned.

Pictured Rocks

Pictured Rocks signs

Then to Munsing for a much needed dinner, and a short walk to Munsing Falls

Munsing Falls

Then I made a quick stop at camp to grab my swim trunks and biodegradable soap. I went down to twelve mile beach for a swim/bath, which was refreshing to the point of being rejuvenating. The stable flies were bad, but not when I was in the water.

I had the place to myself, amazing.

Twelve Mile Beach at Pictured Rocks

Then, a run down to Grand Marais, mostly to ride H58 yet again. Got gas, and a long "I had a Bonneville back in the day" converstaion. Bought a six pack of beer, because I was really starting to miss cold beer.

The ride back to camp was after dark. A fun ride, but I had to take it a little slower because of the wildlife, etc. I stopped by a neighbor's site to share some of the beer (6 is a lot for me on most nights, well, some nights). They were camping off a couple dual sports, so I had a sneaky suspicion they were cool. Pat and Lindsay were good for a long night of fun conversation, and hanging around their campfire was a highlight of the trip. We traded strategies for dealing with a zombie apocalypse, and Pat has since shared with me the location of his family farm should I need a place to hide out during the invasion. That piece of information could be the most important outcome of this trip, depending on what the future holds.