The Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula contains more than 40 miles of lakeshore on Lake Superior, including 15 miles of sandstone cliffs, caves, and rock formations. But its 114 square miles also includes lush vegetation, nature trails, waterfalls, and hiking. With our Pictured Rocks water experience completed the day before (and really – that is definitely the best way to see it, though I might have been better off on the tour boat), we decided to see some of the sites on land.
We’d already stopped in at the main Visitor’s Center for some information before heading to camp, so with our list of NPS Day Hikes in hand, we headed out for the day. Our first stop was over at Munising Falls. At .25 miles, it hardly qualified as a hike, in fact signs to the Falls announced how far away you were in feet. It was a pretty walk on a paved path through some beautiful greenery. And the Falls, while not Niagara, were charming enough.
Though it was still August, we were already seeing signs of Fall in the trees.
Our next spot was the much longer hike at the Miners Falls Trail. At a whopping 1.2 miles it was far more taxing than our last “hike”. Even if the hike had actually been substantial it would have been completely worth it for the view. The overlook to Miners Castle is beautiful. A short walk brought you atop the “castle” but the view was definitely better from a distance.
Since we still needed to break down camp before moving on, we skipped the actual waterfall but we did stop at one of those car overlooks on the way back. The view wasn’t all that interesting (I find that they almost never are), but this little guy sat and posed for a while.
Before breaking down camp we visited the Bay Furnace Ruins situated within the campground. The furnace is all that remains of a settlement that was destroyed in an 1877 fire.
Farewell Pictured Rocks. I hope to return someday.