Sleeping Bears, Active Mosquitoes
My first visit to the Great Lakes and I am yearning to return! On the NW shore of Michigan's lower peninsula is Sleeping Bear Dunes National Seashore, not a park as much as a region of clear lakes, sand dunes, forests, and lovely small towns.
Anishinaabek natives settled here some 3,000 years ago, then in 1837, Michigan became a state and the Lakes shipping and commerce boomed. Manitou Passage, the stretch between the mainland and the Manitou Islands became a shortcut for shipping on Lake Michigan. Today, the town of Glen Haven is historically restored to reflect this time.
From the Sleeping Bear Heritage Trail (22 miles of paved bike trail) to the Dune Climb (3.5 miles of sand) to the Platte Plains Trail (15 miles of rolling hills & lakes), there is so much to enjoy. I could have stayed another week, ferried to the Islands, and found time to simply sit by the water!
Long ago, in the land that is now Wisconsin, a mother bear and her two cubs were driven into Lake Michigan by a raging forest fire. They red and swam and swam, but soon the cubs tired and lagged far behind. Mother bear finally reached the opposite shore and climbed to the top of a bluff to watch and wait for her offspring. But the cubs drowned. Today "Sleeping Bear," a solitary dune in Michigan overlooking Lake Michigan, marks the spot where mother bear waited. Her lost cubs are the two Manitou Islands. -- Anishinaabek Indian Legend
6/28/2016 11:42:01 am
Judy: Constantly amazed how you find so many beautiful out of the way places along your journeys. Loved your photo by the lake, all dressed up for pie day?
6/28/2016 07:53:59 pm
Eileen, I have to admit that 2 people in Florida, 2 years in a row told me how much I would love Sleeping Bear Dunes so I put it on the agenda. All dressed up? Are you laughing at me? j.
6/29/2016 10:11:26 am
Judy: So used to you posting photos on your bike that looked to me that you were dressed to impress. Think you wanted biggest piece of pie for your money.
6/30/2016 08:05:14 am
That's funny. I'm at the end of my Dune Hike wearing baggy hiking shorts! It must be the missing helmet!
6/29/2016 02:54:30 pm
Serious calves workout on that Dunes Climb! Beautiful photos of ale Michigan but my favorite spot would be the cherry pit spitting arena. Where are the other tourists???
6/30/2016 08:17:27 am
Do you have beer on your mind? There were other tourists there though not unruly. The mosquitoes dissipate late June! Rangers said they were preparing for the season as July and August are very busy.
6/29/2016 03:45:58 pm
The last few reads have been enchanting. What gorgeous country in which to get your 'balance' back....Lake MI beaches are so rich and the dunes blow my mind. Is the camping getting more crowded as the season progresses?
6/30/2016 08:03:08 am
Indeed, I would LOVE to do a bike touring trip next summer of the entire peninsula here! There were enough folks for me and people were cordial and considerate. This is my last camping spot until end of July. Staying in hostels and AirBnb now which is CHEAPER than camping solo in Canada. Senseless!
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Cyclist, writer, teacher, avid reader, bike/ped advocate, nomad, pie lover