At Green Bay, WI, I turned NE, driving Route #35 and #2, camping on the very shores of Lake Michigan and my home state. The next morning I pulled into a county park with maybe 50 sites and found two campers! It was primitive but had clean restrooms. Sites trailed all along the water, magnificent spots right on the lake. Where are you campers?
I hadn’t seen the 550’ towers of the Mackinac Bridge crossing to the Lower Peninsula and Mackinaw City (all pronounced as “aw”) since 2004. The next morning Shepler’s Ferry took me to Mackinac Island with the distant 1887 Grand Hotel welcoming the passengers with its Cheshire Cat 660’ front-porch grin, the same hotel where “Somewhere in Time” was filmed in 1980. With rooms starting at $480/night, I went back to my tent for the night!
The Island’s French, British, Native American, and American history is fascinating. Along with its very rich fudge and souvenir shops, are the buggy rides, bike rides, and beaucoup restaurants. In fact, unless you walk or take some form of horse or bike transportation, you are out of luck. Only emergency vehicles are allowed on the island since 1898. Delivery bikes wobble their way to the various hotels with luggage piled high on their racks. Beyond the few streets clogged with tourists, is a marvelous nine-mile bike (or hiking) road around the entire island. In June the fragrance is heavenly with lilacs. It is even more fun to stay overnight after the ferry crowd has gone home. I started a fiction story in that atmosphere once upon a time. Hmmm. Maybe I should finish it.
I stayed the night at Mill Creek Campground a few miles out of town, passing many, many hotels with vacancy signs at 6 p.m. in the evening. We had stayed here many times over the years but I wouldn’t do it again. $30 for a tent site with no water or electric is a bit much. My favorite campground in Michigan is Leelanau State Park above Northport. I thought with Traverse City having its Cherry Festival, I wouldn’t have a chance at a site without reservations but the campground was only half full. I once interviewed a brother and sister who grew up in the nearby Grand Traverse Lighthouse and were living there again after their spouses died. I inquired about them from the ranger and discovered delightfully, that they are both still alive in their 90s and living with or near their children.
God Bless until next time.
At 45, Widow Minshall began 20 years of solo full-time RVing throughout Alaska, Mexico, and Canada. Sharlene canoed the Yukon, mushed sled dogs, worked a dude ranch, visited Hudson Bay polar bears, and lived six months on a Mexican beach. She lectured at Life on Wheels, published six RV-related books and wrote a novel, “Winter in the Wilderness.”