Thursday, September 6, 2012

Hell to Paradise to da U.P. !!

Happy almost Friday!

We ended up having a very nice vacation last week.  Thursday afternoon, Randy said he was feeling somewhat better (darn summer colds, anyway!!) and that if we were going to actually GO someplace, we needed to make some plans.  So I called my sister Laurie who had already offered to take Miss Maddie High-Maintenance so she wouldn't miss her eye meds and also took Jack.  That was a win / win - since we didn't have to pay for a kennel and he was happy to hang out with his cousin Morgan.  So we let Angel invite her BFF and we were on the road by noon Friday!  

Side note - it may seem crazy to take 2 teenage girls on a road trip instead of just one....but they kept each other entertained and Taylor is a good kid anyway.  She was quite pleasant to take along.  

Prepare to be inundated with pics! 

The first stop was in Hell!  Not a terribly exciting place.  There is a gift shop in one building, a pizza / ice cream parlor in the other.  There's a tiny, but cute, wedding chapel out back, next to the mini-golf course.  And that's about it!

 Randy found the official NOAA weather station!

 This lonely colorful tree was in a rest area.

Scenic overlook just south of Mackinaw City.

The moonrise over Lake Huron - from 
the beach in front of our hotel room. 

Angel & Taylor waving from Lake Huron.

 The sunrise from our balcony.  
Even the girls were up at 6:30 to watch!
We learned later that the building that the sun 
is peeking around is the ruins of 
a car elevator that was used to load the second deck 
of the ferry to St. Ignace, pre-bridge!

On the bridge!

Us at the Soo Locks.

Lake #2 - Lake Superior, Brimley State Park

Pt. Iroquois NOAA station

Love the water washing over these rocks!

Point Iroquois Lighthouse

FYI - it is NOT 666 miles from Hell, unless you totally get lost!  
It was more like 400 miles. 

Whitefish Point Lighthouse
not far from where the Edmund Fitzgerald sank.  
The bell is in the Shipwreck Museum here. 
 Lake Superior - again!

Lower Tahquamenon Falls

Woods Critters!

Lower Falls

Lower falls - still!

Upper Tahquamenon Falls

Mackinaw City NOAA station - don't worry -- the last one!  The Whitefish Point one was in a bird observatory building & not as obvious as the others. 

USCGC Mackinaw Icebreaker Museum

Wouldn't President Ford be offended at how creepy this is??? 

The ferry to Mackinac Island

The Mighty Mac

McGulpin Lighthouse

In the Straits

Lake #3 - Lake Michigan

Old Mackinaw Point Lighthouse

Fort Michilimackinac Guard Tower 
(with 2 slackers in flipflops lounging inside)

Guard house

Parade Grounds

Firing the cannon

The bridge from the Fort. 

One of the prettiest police cars I've seen!

So it was a lovely 3 days  - the weather was perfect!  Upper 70s and sunny the whole time.  I got a bit red at the Fort on Sunday, but I don't know if that was sun, wind or a combo of  both.  We intentionally left a few things to go see, so we have a reason to go back!

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