We Discover a Michigan Treasure

                                                                              LAKE SUPERIOR SHORELINE

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Yesterday was a long travel day. We prefer to only drive about 4 hours at a time but decided we would go the whole 9 yards. Up at 6 AM, we were on the road by 7:30. Destination Ontonagon Township Park in Ontonagon, Michigan. The park is a first come, first in campground. No reservations accepted. With that in mind, an afternoon arrival of 1 PM,  & knowing there were only 26 waterfront sites, less if you figure in the size we’d need for the Suite Pea, we knew for sure we would miss out on that much sought after Lake Superior site. But a chance meeting with a local at the bathhouse when we arrived leads us to a just vacated big rig sized lot right on the shores of Gitchee Gumee. We have our own little beach area where we can watch the sunset over the water to the west. Aren’t we the lucky ones!

1 Lb. Cinnamon Rolls

1 Lb. Cinnamon Rolls

We did make one short stop on our way to Ontonagon. I had read about The Hilltop Restaurant & Bakery a few years back on Laurie & Odel’s travel blog. Of course, being foodies, I made a note of it just in case Don & I should ever pass through L’Anse. Our route took us right by it. The Hilltop is renown for their 1 pound cinnamon rolls. Don loves cinnamon rolls. I bought 2 for todays breakfast. Let me tell you, one is enough for 2 people to share. I can also vouch for how delicious they are. ( They even make dog biscuits in their bakery & Tucker gives them 2 paws up.)


Gotta love dem crazy Yoopers! Brenda, the local gal I met earlier, is camped next to us. She’s chest high out in the lake & yells to us, “Come on in. The water’s warm today.” Don & I take her at her word. We run into the water. We immediately high tailed it out. We don’t know what Brenda’s been smokin’ but it must be some really good stuff. We do enjoy a nice sunset sitting by the shore to top off our day.

Ontonagon River The color is caused from the iron in the water.

Ontonagon River
The color is caused from the iron in the water.


Up early. Pack a lunch. Grab the Deep Woods bug spray & camera. We’re headed to Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park. Our goal is to see Lake of the Clouds.  Don has been wanting to visit for years. I had been here as a teen & remembered this deep blue lake in the mountaintops. We both felt a little let down. It is a pretty scene but the cloudy overcast sky reflected upon the lake caused it to look dull & gray. The still, unblemished lake is situated in a valley between 2 ridges. It is fed from the east by the Carp River & empties into Lake Superior at the west end. The lake is 1 mile long but only 15′ deep. Lake of the Clouds is considered to be the gem of the Porkies.

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                                                                                LAKE OF THE CLOUDS

At the overlook

At the overlook

We beg to differ. I noticed on our hikers map that Presque Isle River ran through a portion of the park. I had never seen it but understood it to be a picturesque river. Picturesque is an understatement! This wild, raging, river with its ragged rocky outcroppings & waterfalls took our breaths away. Our photos cannot do  justice to all its primitive beauty. Don & I unanimously agree that the Falls of the Presque Isle River in all their savage & pristine glory are far more beautiful than the much touted Upper & Lower Tahquamenon Falls.

Nawahada Falls on the Presque Isle River in Ojibwa means "in the midst of a rapids"

Nawahada Falls on the Presque Isle River in Ojibwa means “in the midst of a rapids”

Manido Falls

Manido Falls



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Old growth forest

Old growth forest

We spent most of the day hiking from waterfall to waterfall, there are 3 to be seen on this trail,  & crossing  a suspension bridge with the roaring river below. The East & West River Trail is a moderate 2.5 mile hike, through old growth forests along the craggy sides of the Presque Isle River. The trail crosses over the  river in 2 spots & offers stunning views of the rapids & falls.

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Where the Presque Isle River flows into Lake Superior

Where the Presque Isle River flows into Lake Superior

Our lunch spot

Our lunch spot

Tucker cools off

Tucker cools off

With sweaty brows & aching knees (& tired paws too), we made our way back to the truck. Once in, we drove to a little roadside park situated on the shores of Lake Superior & devoured our late lunch (& kibble.) Having spent some time resting & Tucker having cooled his tired puppy paws in the water, we headed home to the Suite Pea. Oh! What a beautiful day!

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Here’s lookin’ at you kid………………………..

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Categories: Uncategorized | 5 Comments

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5 thoughts on “We Discover a Michigan Treasure

  1. I’m new to the blogging world but it looks like you took off full time in April of this year. We are trying to decide if we want to sell our house and go full time so your blog is going to be fun to follow!

    • Hello Marjorie, Welcome aboard the Suite Pea. We too were once where you are now. Following blogs, chomping at the bit to hit the open road. It took us 6 yrs. of planning before we were ready. I will tell you that the hardest part was getting rid of all the stuff one accumulates while living in a stick & brick house. Once the dust clears from that, everything else just falls into place. Of course we’d be more than happy to answer any questions you may have about full timing or preparing to. Bear in mind though that we are still learning as we go. Please keep us up to date on your decision. We’d love to hear from you. -Don & Gayle

  2. Anonymous

    I love all the pictures

  3. Anonymous

    My favorite things – cinnamon rolls and a great campsite. Looks so much different from where we are right now. Enjoy!

  4. Oh my gosh…where to begin…a great campsite by the lake, cinnamon rolls to die for, gorgeous waterfalls, raging river, and moss covered trees….all spectacular! And then a beautiful sunset! Might be hard to leave there! Enjoy!

    Thanks for sharing more from a state we need to explore…this one is in the books!

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