Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Porcupine Mountains State Park, MI…

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Porcupine Mts Michigan 026We grew to like this little gem of a campground in Wakefield Michigan near the Wisconsin border. Sunday Lake has provided wonderful viewing during our four day stay. And although we had a hard time finding a good level site we would come back here anytime.

Our last active day at Eddy Park we planned a long day in Porcupine Mountain Wilderness State Park. We wanted to hit the “top three” attractions in this large 92 square mile park. The Porkies, as the locals call them, are covered with a forest of the hardwood-hemlock type, with mostly hemlock, maple, basswood and birch. After paying the entry fee and acquiring our day pass, we first visited the Presque Isle River and saw the three largest waterfalls there, the Manabezho, Manido and Nawadaha Waterfalls.

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The waterfalls and the river views were incredible and we hiked every stairway to all of the viewing platforms so that we could appreciate every vista. There were also trails upriver we took to enjoy the mature forest and the amazing mushroom and fungus displays the forest offered up to us. There has been a lot of rain here so mushrooms were everywhere as well as beautiful wildflowers and raspberries. We picked a few berries as we walked and had to tear ourselves away to drive the long 33 miles to the go see the next marquis site, the summit view.

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Porcupine Mts Michigan 017This summit view hike was straight up with oodles of ascending steps. Sharon was amazed at the sturdy wooden stairways that even lured her up the summit’s tower where otherwise she would have preferred waiting below as I climbed those heights. The mountain vistas were wonderful so after hiking to all the platforms we chose our favorite one to sit down to share our picnic lunch and enjoy the view. Some cedar waxwings were gorging on currants as we ate so it was enjoyable watching them flit from bush to bush plucking berries.

We hiked back to the car to drive 15 miles over to take the short trail the Lake of the Clouds that is nestled in a deep gorge between two mountains.  It is a pristine unspoiled lake fed by the winding Carp River. Here we found another amazing vista and many more stairs to climb. As much as we enjoyed the mountain climb and the lake, the waterfalls at Presque Isle River called us back since it was on our way home.

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Porcupine Mts Michigan 035So glad were we that we returned because we discovered that farther down the waterfall trail was yet another boardwalk and stairs leading to a suspension bridge over to an “island” created by the raging river separating the land mass. This trail led us to where the river spills into beautiful Lake Superior. We marveled at the opposing forces of the waves coming in and the river venturing out. In fact it so mesmerized us that we found our own little rock expanse to lounge, soak in the sun and marvel to our heart’s content. With no one in sight it seemed as if we had the place all to ourselves… what an amazing end to the day. 

Porcupine Mts Michigan 063Sharon counted all those stairs that long day in the mountains and she said we walked 965 stairs.  Man I knew we had gone up and down a lot of those well built stair cases… the best stair stepper workout we ever had!

So on our very last day at Eddy Park we decided to rest, do chores, laundry and simply enjoy our last views of Sunday Lake. Next up will be a short drive to Bad Water Casino in Wisconsin…


  1. Looks like a great area again, and you god a good workout as well, such a great summer tour!

  2. What a lovely area. Looks like a very peaceful place to be.

  3. I used to go skiing in the Porcupine Mountains--that was many years ago! I never went there in the summer but now I can see I wish I did. What gorgeous photos!

  4. I think that picture of the white flowers is Indian pipe. I'd sure like to see some of those.

    1. that is what I have always heard it called, have only seen it in east Texas and in this area

  5. That looks like a beautiful place. Thanks for the gorgeous photos!

  6. You guys have sure done a wonderful job reporting on Michigan. I've been to many of the same places having fished in the UP for over 35 years in the past. Been a very enjoyable trip down memory lane.


  7. This both looks and sounds like a place we would love. You two are convincing us with these beautiful pictures that a visit back to the Great Lakes area is going to rival one to the Pacific NW for next summer. Thanks for all the information.

  8. We did those stairs 4 years ago and forgot about them until I read your blog. Thanks for the memories! Did you see any bears? I know I was a bit nervous because a ranger had told us a black bear approached a person who was eating lunch at a picnic table