RV Adventures: A trip to the Upper Peninsula, Michigan Day 5

Tuesday, October 6th, 2020

Today we were going to spend the day on Mackinac Island and the weather was perfect. We took an early ferry and Matilda was not thrilled about the ride. Our ferry ride to the island included a ten minute detour under the Mackinac Bridge.

As we got close to the dock on Mackinac Island we passed the Round Island Passage Light and the Round Island Light which are located about 4 tenths of a mile apart.

We walked along the main street and headed up toward Fort Mackinac. Since we had the dog we walked around the fort but didn’t go in. We also walked past the Governor of Michigan’s summer residence.

We then started walking toward the Arch Rock. Our walk took us by some beautiful homes along the waterfront.

When we were at the top of one of our climbs we looked out over Mackinac Island and Lake Huron. The view was spectacular and the lake water looked like the waters of the Caribbean.

Looking over the island toward the lake.
Such beautiful shades of blue water!

Our walk included passing by Mission Church which was built in 1829 and is the state’s oldest surviving church. St. Anne’s Catholic Church was also on our walk and it was built in the 1880s during the Victorian period. Many weddings are held in the church.

Since it was late in the season the Mackinac Harbor was not busy at all.

We were very careful to keep our social distance and wear our masks. We had pizza to go and ate it on a park bench! Matilda was quite interested in our lunch!

Matilda is thinking we should share with her!

Since we already walked just shy of 6 miles we decided to take a carriage tour. It took us around the island. The horses scared Matilda. She hid behind our legs when a horse was near and there were quite a few that she saw!

Matilda is trying to figure out how to escape!

The historic Grand Hotel is a famous landmark on the island. It was built in the late 1800s and boasts about its world’s largest porch.

The Grand Hotel

Arch Rock was a favorite stop for us. It is a natural rock bridge made of limestone.

We left not long before the last ferry back to St. Ignace. Matilda was just as thrilled going back as she was on our ride over to the island. She was happy to get in the car and head back to our campsite to watch the sunset again.

After our busy day on Mackinac Island, we enjoyed the relaxation of the campfire!

RV Adventures: A trip to the Upper Peninsula, Michigan Day 4

Monday, October 5th, 2020

Today was a travel day from Grayling to our next campsite in Cedarville. This was a two hour drive. We didn’t want to drug Matilda so we gave her a calming chew and I snuggled her in her blanket until we arrived at our campsite; the Loons Point RV Park and Campground. The drive was filled with the beautiful fall colors!

We also went over the Mackinac Bridge which is across the Straits of Mackinac. It was a windy day and there was construction on the bridge.

It was a great site being along the water of Lake Huron!

Our campsite

Once we set up camp and unhooked the car we were a little concerned about the car because all of the warning lights came on and were blinking at us. Dave got online and looked for the closest Toyota service center. It felt like doom and gloom for being able to take off and go sightseeing in the car. Dave talked to the Toyota service center and got an appointment for Wednesday. In the meantime, I was reading online about towing a Prius and having all of the lights coming on and what that meant. One of the suggestions said to drive the car around accelerating and stopping quickly. Well, Dave tried it and the lights all disappeared! Whew! We canceled the service appointment and got in the car and headed to De Tour Village. It is located on the western shore of St. Mary’s River which connects Lake Huron to Lake Superior.

We also walked as far as the Nature Preserve would let us hoping to see the DeTour Reef Lighthouse. We were almost to the point where we would have visual of the lighthouse when the Preserve ended and it was private property. We turned around and walked back. At least it was a lovely walk!

As we were driving back through the village Dave spotted the DeTour Reef Lighthouse that we were hoping to see on our walk in the Preserve. It was built in 1931 and is located a mile offshore.

This evening we enjoyed our campfire and watched the sunset!

RV Adventures: A trip to the Upper Peninsula, Michigan Day 3

Sunday, October 4, 2020

We started our exploration early. The weather was a little gloomy and some raindrops this morning. Our first stop was Alpena. It is the second most populated city in the Northern Michigan area. It is known for its proximity to Lake Huron and Thunder Bay.

As we drove into town we saw this beautiful underwater dimensional mural. We stopped for a picture. Hundreds of community members helped paint the 3-D fish! This mural had to be reconstructed after severe weather destroyed it!

Our next stop was Thunder Bay on Lake Huron. Thunder Bay has the nickname of “Shipwreck Alley” because it is estimated that over 100 shipwrecks lie in the bay! (I’ve also read over 200 shipwrecks!)

The Alpena Lighthouse was built in 1914 and is now on the National Register of Historic Places.

Our next stop was the Old Presque Isle Lighthouse. It was built in 1840 and is not operational anymore.

Ringing the Lansing City Hall Clock Tower Bell

We then visited the “new” Presque Isle Lighthouse. It was built in 1870. You can climb the 130 steps in the lighthouse but due to Covid-19 we found that the lighthouses that permitted you to climb the steps were closed to the public.

We drove to the Forty Mile Point Lighthouse and it is located on Lake Huron. It was completed in 1896 and is still in operation.

Nearby was the shipwreck of the Joseph S. Fey. It was a wooden steamer and it encountered a strong gale on Lake Huron. The steamer hit the rocks at Forty Mile Point. It broke apart and we could still see a large portion of the starboard side of the ship on the beach!

Before returning to our campsite we stopped at a one room schoolhouse, the Glawe school. When it opened in 1885 the first teacher had 17 students that she taught for 3 months of the school year! Her pay was $20.00 a month!

It was a dreary but fun day with all of our stops!