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Michigan's U.P. - Nature Ahoy!

Updated on July 22, 2015

Pictured Rocks

An evening cruise of Pictured Rocks
An evening cruise of Pictured Rocks

Lake Superior Treasures

Many of you have probably heard the song, The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald, by Gordon Lightfoot. The story is about a real ship loaded with iron ore, whose crew lost their lives in a horrific storm. It takes place in The Great Lake, Superior. The song talks about how rough the waters can be in certain weather.

The weather can be extreme but the beauty it leaves behind is the clear sapphire and emerald waters with gorgeous multicolored rock formations. These are real treasure for sightseers, hikers, nature and/or adventure enthusiasts, and just laid back people who enjoy beauty.

With hiking and bike trails, boat rentals and charter tours, delicious food with waterfront views, nice clean accommodations, and friendly residents, how can you go wrong?

Great Lake vs Ocean

Wikipedia stated that: Lake Superior is the largest freshwater lake in the world by surface area. By size it is about as large as South Carolina. It is the third largest freshwater lake by volume. If you were to pour its contents over the Americas they would be covered in about a foot of water. It is also 733 feet (223 m) below sea level, at its lowest spot.

Lake Superior obviously does not cover as much area as an ocean but you don't have to worry about jellyfish and sharks. Of course the sudden change in weather can be very frightening. It can go from a sunny cloudless sky to black clouds with thunder and lightening in seconds with no warning. The water becomes very tempestuous and your boat can get tossed around like a toy. Or worse as in the case of the Edmund Fitzgerald.

Precious Gems

Click thumbnail to view full-size

Gems of the Lake

So why would anyone want to chance it? The gems of the lake. Take a look at these photos and see what you think. This is just a taste. There is so much more. The colors of the water alone are like sparkling jewels. Then add the pigmentation of mineral deposits on the shorelines and you have a bounty of nuances.

This is only one small area of Lake Superior. There is land mass surrounding it from Canada as well as the three States of the U. S.: Michigan, Wisconsin, and Minnesota. I have not visited other shores yet, so I can only tell you about this one wonderful fortune of delight, for now.

More Gem Views

Click thumbnail to view full-size

Painted Rocks

Even though they are called Pictured Rocks I always want to call them painted rocks with all of the splendid hues of browns, reds, greens, yellows, and even some blues. The rocks are decorated by the minerals that the grounds are rich in, such as; copper, iron, nickel, silver, and even some uranium. Who would have thought that metals would paint such beautiful colors on the shores of a lake?

Maybe the Native Americans as they too painted their stories on rocks in the area known now as Lake Superior Provincial Park, Ontario, Canada. Many of these pictographs remain today.

A Michigander Map of Michigan

Image from flickr by Jellaluna
Image from flickr by Jellaluna | Source


As a Michigander I am happy that there are still many natural beauties left in our state. We are surrounded by four of the great lakes; Michigan, Huron, Erie, and Superior. There is a lot to do here in the summer, fall, winter, and even spring. Year round enjoyment, especially for those who love the outdoors. Snowmobiling, skiing, sledding are a few winter sports. Of course swimming, fishing, boating, and lounging on the beach in the summer. Hiking year round. Autumn offers a glorious riot of colors.

The people of the "mitten" state carry a map of our state with us at all times. So I am giving you a sample map to the right of this text, to help you find your way to Pictured Rocks. Don't miss a chance to visit and peruse the Pictured Rocks for yourself.

Google Map of Pictured Rocks

A markerPictured Rocks -
Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, Grand Marais, MI 49839, USA
get directions

Munising, Michigan

A markerMunising, Michigan -
Munising, MI 49862, USA
get directions

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    • Dardia profile image

      Darlene Yager 5 years ago from Michigan

      Thank you SommerDalton! It is a very beautiful area and wonderful to visit. I could go into detail about certain points of interest but then it would never do it justice. You have to experience it to get the full benefit.

      Thanks for stopping by, for commenting and the votes!

    • SommerDalton profile image

      Sommer Dalton 5 years ago

      Great hub! Makes me want to visit!! Voted up, useful, interesting, and awesome!

    • Dardia profile image

      Darlene Yager 6 years ago from Michigan

      Hello again, ahorseback!

      I have to admit it is one of my favorite places to visit. Of course I have a few favorites. This particular area draws me to it though, even knowing it gets even colder and lot more snow up there than we get down here in the LP. The lighthouses, the covered bridges, not to mention Mackinac. The Mackinac Bridge is quite beautiful especially at night when it is all lit up and reflecting off the water. There are some great man made things but I am a softy for what nature provides.

      Thanks for reading!

    • ahorseback profile image

      ahorseback 6 years ago

      I have always dreamed of the great lakes visit , the lighthouses, the dramatic shoreline , even Gordon Lightfoots song! Maybe sailing or just driving the shoreline.Awesome hub!

    • Dardia profile image

      Darlene Yager 6 years ago from Michigan

      Hello, Cardelean!

      Nice of you to come by. Thanks for the link. I see so many beautiful places and still could never feel that "the grass is greener on the other side." Of course if I lived in one of the other beautiful places I would have to feel the same I think.

    • cardelean profile image

      cardelean 6 years ago from Michigan

      Great hub Dardia. I'm glad I had a chance to read it. Your description of the area is excellent. It is truly a gem of our great state! Thanks for the link and I have reciprocated.

    • Dardia profile image

      Darlene Yager 7 years ago from Michigan

      Yenajeon, I hope you get a chance to take a trip to the UP. It is a very beautiful place. I am ready to make another trip up there.

    • yenajeon profile image

      yenajeon 7 years ago from California

      I've lived here a while but still haven't been to the UP. I def need to plan a trip soon!

    • Dardia profile image

      Darlene Yager 7 years ago from Michigan


      I have considering transplanting myself to the UP also. It is beautiful up there. The only bad thing about developing more of this area is that we will lose more of this natural beauty and it takes away the homes of the wildlife.

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 7 years ago from North Carolina

      I was a native transplant from Detroit to the U.P for 6 years. It is beautiful country. Thanks for sharing such great photos and info.

    • Dardia profile image

      Darlene Yager 7 years ago from Michigan

      Hello, M. T.

      I have actually never been to Mackinac Island. I have lived in Michigan all of my life outside of a year in Florida taking care of my grandmother. Yet I have never stopped off at Mackinac. One day I will! Thanks, for stopping by!

    • M. T. Dremer profile image

      M. T. Dremer 7 years ago from United States

      Yeah, Michigan's weather can be all over the place. Just this last week I walked out one day to humid heat, then the next it was dry and cold. And that doesn't even begin to mention the snow. OH GOD THE SNOW! Seriously though, it is a really beautiful state. And if anyone finds themselves traveling between the UP and LP, they should stop and check out Mackinac Island. Truly one of my favorite spots.

    • Dardia profile image

      Darlene Yager 7 years ago from Michigan

      @DiamondRN- Oh yes, of course! Duh! But no I have never had poached venison anyway. The hunters I know do not hunt out of season. Probably because they would have to take time off work to go north hunting and can't afford to do that very often. They also make sure they get their licenses. :)

    • DiamondRN profile image

      Bob Diamond RPh 7 years ago from Charlotte, NC USA

      I'm sorry, Dardia. "Poached," in this case, means shot either out-of-season, over the limit or without a license :0)

    • Dardia profile image

      Darlene Yager 7 years ago from Michigan

      @DiamondRN- I have never had it poached. I have had venison stew and steaks.

      Thanks for visiting the UP and my hub! :)

    • DiamondRN profile image

      Bob Diamond RPh 7 years ago from Charlotte, NC USA

      If you spend the winter in the UP you will more than likely eat some "Poached" venison.

    • Dardia profile image

      Darlene Yager 7 years ago from Michigan

      I am trying to talk my hubby into taking me soon. I hope we don't miss the leaves.

    • jennyjenny profile image

      jennyjenny 7 years ago from Somewhere in Michigan

      Nice! :) Great Descriptions! When are we going? I feel a Kodak moment coming on! He he! :)


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