Monday, May 23, 2016

2016 Epic Road Trip - Day 8

May 21, 2016

Day 8 - Traverse City, MI to Munising, MI - 335 Miles

I made it to the UP.  It's official--I even have a 'Yooper Penny' to prove it. Plus I ate a 'pasty'! (Ryder had some as well and seemed to enjoy it!)

The first stop this morning was at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. Absolutely beautiful. Took a very nice driving tour along the lakeshore and even stopped at the climbing dune. Cool!  Legend has it that in the land that is now Wisconsin, a mother bear and her two cubs were driven into Lake Michigan by a raging forest fire.  They swam and swam, but soon the cubs tired and lagged far behind.  Mother bear finally reached the opposite shore and climbed to the top of a bluff to watch and wait for her cubs.  But sadly, they drowned.  Today, the “Sleeping Bear” is a solitary dune in overlooking Lake Michigan which marks the spot where Mother Bear waited.  Beautiful scenery and crystal blue lake.  

The water below the dunes is so blue! The pictures speak for themselves.  The dunes were created by the winds coming across Lake Michigan from the west, bringing sand and gravel with them.

northwest shore of Michigan’s lower peninsula. 
The climbing Dune

 Check out the wind erosion around the roots of this huge basswood tree.

A very patriotic chicken....
A Giant Hot Dog in Mackinaw City, MI
After touring the lakeshore, I headed toward the Mackinac Bridge. I have heard such horror stories about the bridge...I have to say it is a very big/high bridge, but the winds were fine. 

After crossing the bridge, it was a search for Pasties!

Stopped at Suzy's Pasties for a late lunch. It was very good.

I ate the  whole thing, but Ryder did get a sampling 😄🐶 

Found Bigfoot in Munising, MI in the UP (Upper Peninsula)
 I crossed the 45th parallel (latitude); it’s colder again but is daylight until about 10pm.

Then it was onto Munising for the night, but before I called it a day, I stopped at the Dogpath for dinner.

Found this out front of the restaurant.

Then it was off to Otter Creek Campground for the night -- however the roads--a word I am using very loosely -- (about 9 miles) turned out to be all gravel and tiny and rutted, so I erred on the side of caution and parked for the night in the parking lot of Hiawatha National Forest. Calling it early cuz tomorrow is scheduled to be a long day! 
This trip is awesome!

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