Once again, we were blessed with great weather today. We reached our goal of seeing three of the Great Lakes on this road trip. Today, was Lake Superior. Yesterday, at Mackinac Island, was Lake Huron. And the days at Arcadia were on Lake Michigan.
We checked out of the Bicycle Street Inn about 9:00am and caught the 9:30am ferry to St. Ignace. We made a route decision last night that takes us off the original track. We are no longer driving up to Sault Sainte Marie. We discovered that the cruise to visit the Pictured Rock National Lakeshore departs only once per day until June. The departure time is 2:00pm. So, we decided to give up on our plan to visit the city and the local university where my friends, Chris and Cathy Buell, attended.
We set out for Munising, Michigan where the cruise boats are docked. This is on Lake Superior. We were told that these cruises are normally fully booked during this period so we purchased our tickets prior to our departure. We wanted to arrive about 1:00pm so we limited our stops along the route.
Once there, we got in line and boarded the ship.
The Grand Hotel
Our last view of this fabulous hotel.
We chose to sit upstairs, on the right side after the captain told Jackie that was the best side. It was warm. We removed our sweaters right away. Only about 30 minutes later we put them back and added jackets. It got cold quick. The views were spectacular but hard to explain. The Rocks are really shore walls. They are interesting and odd. Over the years erosion has removed the shore into the hill above leaving about a 150-200 feet cliff down into the lake. It exposes several layers of rock, soft below and hard above. It is clear that the erosion continues today when you notice trees upside down leaning towards the lake. The walls take on many shades. The colors in the cliffs are created by the large amounts of minerals in the rock. The iron ore in the rocks make them appear red and orange, the black/white is manganese, the limonite is yellow/brown, and the cooper appears pink/green. There are also many open natural bridges and interesting rock formations along the way.
I am posting several photos but they can't really capture the views. I recommend anyone reading this to put it on your bucket list.
This is the marina for departure on the scenic cruise.
After returning, we drove over to Marquette, Michigan for the night. We lucked into the best hotel. It was a Staybridge Suites hotel. We had a free dinner and breakfast. Just what we needed since we were too tired to go out dining.
That's it. Tomorrow we will drive down towards Green Bay, Wisconsin.
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