Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore

Last week the Casteel parents came up to visit and to go camping with us.  We traveled up to Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore in the Upper Peninsula on Thursday morning without Matt (he had to work, but would join us Friday evening).  After setting in to camp and walking around the surrounding area, we made a Casteel favorite for dinner: Hobo Stew.  I’m not sure where the name came from, as it’s not stew, just hamburger, carrots, potatoes, and onions wrapped in foil and cooked over the fire.  Nothing says a family camping trip like Hobo Stew!

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Matt and I’s tent

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Mom and Dad Casteel’s tent

On Friday, we decided to explore some of the many waterfalls and other features found in the area.  We drove to various parking areas, and then hiked to see the waterfall or famous feature, came back, and then went to the next parking area.  We still managed to get in lots of hiking, but got to see a little more of the park that way.  For the day we visited Munising Falls, Sand Point March Trail, Miners Falls, Miners Castle, hiked along the shore to the Au Sable Light Station, saw the Log Slide, Grand Sable Dunes, and finally Sable Falls.  It was a busy day, but so pretty!  We had no idea how gorgeous the lakeshore of Lake Superior was until we got here.  We learned a lot about the history of the area as well, such as that the logging companies used to build shoots down the dunes to send their logs out on the lake to be picked up by the boats (hence the Log Slide).  It was really cool to see the crazy steepness of the slide (35 degrees) and watch people run down it and then have to make their way back up (the wooden slide that was used is now gone, just leaving the steep sand path).  And of course a day with the Casteel’s would not be complete without a bald eagle sighting at Miners Castle or a mystery bird sighting along the road!

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mystery bird = sandhill crane

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Grand Sable Dunes

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one of the many waterfalls!

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Au Sable Light Station

On Saturday, we set out on a 10 mile loop hike in the Chapel Basin.  We saw Mosquito Falls, Chapel Falls, lots of beach, and Chapel Rock (a very interesting rock feature that looked like a small Greek stone chapel with a tree growing on top).  Matt ran a potion of the North Country Trail and then met us for part of our hike.  It was a gorgeous hike both in the forest (we were almost positive we could have been in Robin Hood’s Sherwood Forest) and along the lake (look at the gorgeous rocks!).

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Arch in the rock

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Beautiful rocks and water!

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Mosquito Falls

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More coast

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Hiking along the lakeshore

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Another arch

On Sunday, we drove to the Beaver Basin area and took a 4 mile out and back hike along Little Beaver Lake and Beaver Lake.  We saw quite a bit of evidence of the beavers who live in the area, but no beavers themselves.  It was a gorgeous area, with the two lakes side by side.

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Sign picture! (the Casteel family is famous for them)

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Beaver dam on Little Beaver Lake

After that, we headed home to begin a new week.  But Pictured Rock National Lakeshore has become a new favorite up in the Upper Peninsula!

Published in: on September 2, 2014 at 9:05 pm  Comments (1)  

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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. Great summary! Looks like it was a wonderful, scenic location for a family weekend getaway.


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