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View Full Version : Trip report: Pictured Rocks/NCT section.



OhioHiker
09-27-2021, 11:24
When: September 22-25 2021
Weather: Windy, highs on upper 50s, lows in upper 40s.

I started a thread asking for advice on planning almost a year ago. I got amazing advice! It took a lot of stress out of trip planning.

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Sept 22 8:00am. I got dropped off in the morning at the Munising Falls Visitor Center and took the shuttle ($35 at the time) to the Grand Sable Visitor Center. There was a group of 3 guys also on the bus, more on that later.

Arriving at Grand Sable the park ranger briefed us on basic bear info. Apparently itís bear hunting season and they retreat to the no hunting zones in the park.

The beginning of the trail goes through a very pretty field with many pine and birch trees. Crossing some wood plank walk ways and into a forrest.

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The trail pops out at a small trail head and a .6 mile road walk along Grand Sable Lake. There is also a cool sand dune with some cool views.

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I happened to hit the first notable landmark, Log Slide, at lunch time. I intended to sit at the overlook and eat but the wind was crazy and pretty cold. I retreated to a small bench area just before the dune up to the Log Slide. The other group of 3 hikers from the bus had caught up to me. We chatted and ate together. They were from Lansing Michigan.


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Another 1.8M through the woods skirting Lake Superior with amazing views of the lake. I arrived at Au Sable Camp Ground around 2pm. Out of muscle memory first thing I do is set up camp, get water, then chill. Being so early I took a quick nap :)

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End of day oneÖ. To be continued.

OhioHiker
09-27-2021, 11:24
Day 2 reserved

OhioHiker
09-27-2021, 11:25
Reserved day 2

OhioHiker
09-27-2021, 12:02
Sept 23 6:00am. I donít sleep very well and combined with making up around 5:30am most of my working life. I am a early riser.

It was recommended to me to pack up and head to Au Sable Lighthouse and eat breakfast there. There is water, trash cans, and toilets there. Awesome!

Unfortunately it was crazy windy and I couldnít even use my stove. I retreated to a garage type building to block the wind and cooked there.

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After that came a pretty long road walk down the access road to the lighthouse and then through Twelvemile Beach Camp Ground. Note to self: if I ever want to car camp or own a RV I must get back to this site!

Nothing really exciting. Put head down and hiked on today. I ran across the Lansing Trio and while they packed up at Benchmark. We chatted again briefly. The trail snaked through woods then along the lake and back into the woods a few times. Offering incredible views every time the lake came into view! I meet up with 3 guys again for lunch at Trappers Lake. Second night I stayed at Beaver Creek. I meet another solo hiker; Dave from Iowa.

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End of day 2

OhioHiker
09-27-2021, 12:23
Sept 24 6:00am. Early start again. I think today was the most beautiful of the entire trip. Hit a lot of the iconic Pictured Rocks things. Amazing! Also ran across Dave from Iowa and the Lansing Trio again. Their group was supposed to be +2 and had sites booked for them. They bailed last minute and left them with extra sites. We all planned to meet at Potato Patch for the last night.

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OhioHiker
09-27-2021, 12:37
Sept 25 1:00am. I knew it was supposed to get rain and wind overnight but it was insane! Iíve never been scared while tent camping until this night. It was at least 40mph wind with gusts higher. My SMD Lunar Solo held on like a champ!

I had one tent stake pull out do to the wind and Sandy soil. I use MSR groundhog minis I think I am going to get 2 standard groundhogs before my next trip.

I went from Potato Patch to Sand Point. It was a beautiful walk on soft sand paths to Miners Castle. From there is was 2 mile through the woods. A lot of small elevation changes wet terrain and wood decking.

I exited at the Sand Point marsh parking lot around 9:30a to my ride with pizza and a beer
! Mmmm. Real food! Dave from Iowa was close behind me and shared a beer with me.

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Odd Man Out
09-27-2021, 13:00
Nice. Did you know Miner's Castle used to have two "turrets", but one collapsed a few years ago? Google pictures to see what it used to look like.

illabelle
09-27-2021, 14:20
Nice report, and great pictures!
This one reminds me of Courthouse Rock in the Smokies.
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OhioHiker
09-27-2021, 14:32
Nice report, and great pictures!
This one reminds me of Courthouse Rock in the Smokies.
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I was really shocked at the amount of ups and downs and rock outcroppings in the wooded sections.

illabelle
09-27-2021, 14:34
I was really shocked at the amount of ups and downs and rock outcroppings in the wooded sections.
Flat would be oh-so-boring! :)

TS-WNY
09-29-2021, 12:07
Nice trip report! Looks awesome.

TexasBob
09-29-2021, 16:54
Nice report, thanks. I noticed a "Vampire Killing Kit" in your gear photo. Did you get the ultra light version with balsa wood stakes or go old school with oak?

Odd Man Out
09-29-2021, 19:01
Nice report, and great pictures!
This one reminds me of Courthouse Rock in the Smokies.
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These are probably the lakes shore cliffs from when the prehistoric lake levels were much higher.

Pringles
09-30-2021, 08:37
Thank you for the great trip report. I like the picture of the lake cobbles, at Au Sable Point East a lot, and the picture of Coves, as well, thought they were all nice. I’m sorry you couldn’t eat on the porch of the lighthouse, it really is a special thing to do, but it looks like you got a nice view, anyway. Thanks for the nice trip down memory lane. :-)

wornoutboots
10-04-2021, 08:57
Nice Report & Pix!! Thanks for sharing!!!