Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 23
  1. #1

    Default Pictured Rocks section.

    I am planning a section hike of the 42 miles thru Pictured Rocks NP. Grand Maris to Munising Falls. Seems like it should be doable in 4 day 3 nights. I hope that leaves time for beautiful views, side trails, and beach lunches?

    It sounds like I have to reserve camp sites in advanced. How do you do that without knowing mileage in between them? I also assume I have to carry 4 maybe 5 days of food? What is a good time to do this trip, Iíve read the bugs are pretty bad in the summer.

    any info you have I would appreciate. I am a terrible planner, Iíd rather just go and figure it out.. lol.

  2. #2
    Registered User
    Join Date
    10-17-2007
    Location
    Michigan
    Age
    61
    Posts
    4,752

    Default

    I did this trip a few years ago. Yes you must reserve campsites in n advance. The Backcountry trip planner at the park website has a milage chart on page 9 and a map on page 10

    https://www.nps.gov/piro/planyourvis...accessible.pdf

    We started at the Grand Sable visitors center and ended at sand point. If you go from grand Marais to Munising falls you'll add a few miles on each end. We had two cars. If you are on your own you'll have to book a shuttle. Check the web page for current options. We camped at Au Sable Point, Beaver Creek, and Mosquito River. Some campgrounds don't allow fires, if that is important to you (check the planning document). Beaver Creek was a great campground on a bluff above a beach. It was a pretty easy 4 days (7, 13, 9, and 10 miles) but you could do it in 5 if you want to take your time. We did not do any side trips. There are not many options other than a couple loops into inland lakes. Bugs were not bad. Black fly season is June in the UP but we went in August. The Sable Flies (biting flies) were bad on the beach in Grand Marais. There is a community campground in Grand Marais that is a nice place to stay the night before you start. Yes you will need to carry food. No resupply options on the trail.

    The great thing about this hike is the variety. You start with a waterfall, northern woods and pond, a view of the dunes looking down into the lake (only one other place in the world with that kind of view), and a light house. The next day you follow 12 Mile beach which ends at Chapel Beach (one of the most spectacular beaches anywhere). Then the rest of the hike is along the cliffs which can only be viewed by Backcountry hiking or boat. Spray Fall is pretty cool. The one constant is lake superior which is like none other.

    If you are driving up from the south, there are a couple of good pasty shops along US2 just west of the bridge.

    Let me know if you have more questions. Unlike you, I love planning.

  3. #3

    Default

    I second what Odd Man Out has said. I lived in the area for 20 years and hiked there regularly. When you get to Munising, get a pasty at Muldoons. :-) If you stay at Au Sable Point East, pack up before breakfast and hike the half mile or so to the lighthouse and eat breakfast on the front porch. It’s a sweet place in the early light.

  4. #4
    Registered User
    Join Date
    10-17-2007
    Location
    Michigan
    Age
    61
    Posts
    4,752

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Pringles View Post
    I second what Odd Man Out has said. I lived in the area for 20 years and hiked there regularly. When you get to Munising, get a pasty at Muldoons. :-) If you stay at Au Sable Point East, pack up before breakfast and hike the half mile or so to the lighthouse and eat breakfast on the front porch. It’s a sweet place in the early light.
    Also I recall there was a real bathroom and drinking water at the lighthouse. 12 Mile beach campground and miners castle are other places where you may find some front country amenities.

  5. #5

    Default

    What do you guys recommend for must stay at locations?

  6. #6
    Registered User
    Join Date
    10-17-2007
    Location
    Michigan
    Age
    61
    Posts
    4,752

    Default

    Places to stay on the trail? Beaver Creek was my favorite campground. It had a community fire ring on a bluff just above the beach/lake. Awesome evening (see pics below). Chapel Beach is spectacular but we didn't camp there. No fires allowed if that's important to you. Places to stay off the trail? If you need to camp en-route, there are a couple of nice NF Campgrounds off US 2 just west of St Ignace - Lake Michigan (on the lake) and Brevort Lake. You could also take the ferry from St Ignace to Mackinac Island and stay at the Grand Hotel for like $1000 per night. I hear it's pretty nice. I forgot about Muldoon's for pasties. I'm from lower MI so we always stop by the bridge for an immediate pasty fix at Lehto's or Suzies.

    dunes.jpg lighthouse.jpg
    On the first day you see Grand Sable Dunes, like nothing you've seen. Soon after you get a view of our first night's campground is near the lighthouse.

    beach.jpg
    If you ever wanted 12 miles of white sand beach all to yourself. This is the place. No sharks or jellyfish.

    sunset.jpg creek.jpg
    A fellow camper watches the sunset from the fire circle at Beaver Creek campground. Down at the beach, Beaver Creek empties into the Lake.

    chapel.jpg beach2.jpg
    Chapel beach has a mini water fall where the river meets the lake, a tree growing out of a rock, and a beach. Looking the other way you see the cliffs.

    falls.jpg tree.jpg
    Spray falls is a sight. Note the little tree growing on the point just beyond the falls. Its a great place for a break/lunch. You can walk to the base of the tree to get a closeup look at the falls. You can't tell from up top there is not much below you. If you fall, you might survive. That tree looks pretty much the same as it did when I first visited almost 40 years ago so it's probably secure. But someday, it will go down down down.

    kayak.jpg rocks.jpg trail.jpg
    The last couple days are along the cliffs. We could eavesdrop on the kayakers. They didn't know we were there. If you are crazy (like me) you walk on the right side of the trees, but nowhere are you required to risk your life.

    toilet.jpg
    Mosquito River Campground didn't have that many mosquitoes, but it did have a privy with a view.

  7. #7

    Default

    Oh my gosh! Thank you thank you. I feel confident I can plan my hike just solely based on the past 2 posters!!!

  8. #8

    Default

    Silly question of the day... can I eat lunch at a campground and have access to electric to charge my battery bank?

    I think Iíll be good for power, iPhone in airplane mode and clicking off tons of photos, maybe bring Apple Watch, and my headlamp is also rechargeable.

    I can go all day on a phone charge in normal phone conditions, and my 10,000Mah battery will charge it twice. I plan to power it off at night.

    The Apple Watch will go roughly 1.5 days. It isnít that critical of it dies. Just would be fun to collect and log data.. steps, HR.. etc.

    I donít expect to use my headlamp enough to drain it.. Iíll just top it off the day before.
    Last edited by OhioHiker; 07-16-2020 at 21:01.

  9. #9

    Default

    Those pictures are beautiful, and that’s what Pictured Rocks looks like. Those sites he recommended are awesome... but so are pretty much all the others. Look at the map and figure out how far you want to go each day, and slate in the campsites. If the sites you pick are those of OMO, great. If not, mention which ones you’re at, and maybe we can tell you more about that site. He mentioned Chapel, and the big rock. It was called Chapel Rock because, the story goes, Father Marquette was saying mass for some natives and it began to rain. He moved under the shelter of the rock overhang. Voila, Chapel Rock. The campsite before Chapel Beach is called coves. If you stay there, set up camp, and hike just a wee bit further, and go into one of the coves for a very cold (refreshing?) swim. If you’re going to get a slightly later start, or just want to go slower, you might stop at Masse Homestead. There’s no water there, so plan accordingly. The first time I stayed there, it was just a nice spot in the woods. There were lots of birds, including lots of interesting warblers. Nice might have been a generous description of the site, though. Then I looked at the woody-dune right behind camp, and climbed it. Wow. Just wow. It’s sort of the same view you get from the top of the log slide, but without a bunch of people. It’s different, in that at log slide, the dune goes directly down to the water, but at the top at Masse, there are a few dunes undulating out to the lake. It’s a little like the difference between Shenandoah National Park, where you’re on the spine of the mountains, and the Smokys, where you can see ridges of mountains folding into the distance. At least sort of. Most of the sites are quite nice. Oh, and when you do the hike between Chapel and Mosquito, plan on eating lunch or an extended snack from one of the views on the rocks.

    There is a modern restroom at Miner’s Castle, but with budget issues, they may not be open. As to 12 Mile Beach and Hurricane River campgrounds, they always had water faucets, but no modern restrooms or electricity. I don’t even remember a water faucet at the lighthouse. Ask when they issue your permit, because things change. I live near a different park now.

    My mom used to say that she hoped I’d have good weather when I hiked there. I started out wishing for good weather, too, but then I saw The Lake throw a hissy fit. Twelve foot waves are pretty cool.

    Anyway, have a great trip!

  10. #10
    Registered User
    Join Date
    10-17-2007
    Location
    Michigan
    Age
    61
    Posts
    4,752

    Default

    Don't know about charging. I am happily stuck in the mid 20th century. Pringles is correct that I was only commenting on the places we camped. Others are likely to be as good or better. Coves sounds great. Didn't know the chapel rock story. So cool.

  11. #11

    Default

    Purely based on a recommended sites versus the mileage I am comfortable with (although I fear that I am way underestimating, I hope that I donít get there and able to fly through... I guess if thatís the case Iíll have more time to enjoy side trails and spectacular views)

    Here is a copy/paste from my notes.

    Grand Stable Visitor Center to Sand Point Junction

    Must stay at sites
    Au Stable point (breakfast at lighthouse)
    Chapel Beach

    Maybes
    12 Mile Beach
    Beaver Creek
    Coves (dip in water)


    Plan 1
    (Start late morning)
    Au Stable (7.1)
    SevenMile (7.3)
    Mosquito River (16)
    Mosquito to Sand point (9.1)

    Plan 2
    (Start Early)
    12 Mile Beach (11.5)
    Coves Group (11.7)
    Miners Castle (12.2)
    Miners Castle to Sand Point (4.1) maybe Munising Falls (7)

    Plan 3
    Benchmark (11.2)
    Beaver Creek (9.2)
    Mosquito River (10)
    Mosquito to Sand Point (9.1)





    Must see
    Mosquito River privy

  12. #12

    Default

    When you get to the Log Slide overlook, youíll see people going down the 200 foot high sand dune. Kids run down it. Then you see people slogging back up the hill. There are signs warning you that itís hard work coming back up, and that people have heart attacks, etc.. I have a friend who told that when his kids were in their teens, the whole family would go down the hill. This was usually in late August, when the lake had warmed. Then, instead of climbing up the sand, they would walk along the shore, swimming when necessary (Lake Superior is really cold), toward the light house. When the trail met up with the shoreline, theyíd turn around and take the trail back up the hill to their car. The trail is on nice soft dirt, with a few patches of sand, and has switchbacks. I donít recommend that with a pack, and I never did it, but it sounded like a neat idea.

    You had said something about eating at a campground, while charging a phone. Again, I donít think thereís any power along the way (except at Minerís Castle, if itís open). But donít settle for just any old spot to eat. A magnificent spot will come along any minute.

    I donít know if you care much about literature, but it youíre even a bit interested, if you head west out of Munising, going toward Marquette, thereís a rest area on the lake side. (Not the road to the ferry to Grand Islandówhich is another glorious place.) Park. When you face the lake, go to the water, then go right. The shore veers off to the left in a short distance. Straight in front of you (when the shore goes left) is a rock cliff with weeds and whatnot growing on it. Look a bit up. Thereís a face carved in the rock. Longfellow wrote about it. I think it was called ďface in the rock,Ē but Iím not sure. It was eroded rather badly the last time I looked for it, but you could still see it. You might Google it, if interested, for better directions.

    And now, Iím off to my new county parkóYellowstone. Iím going to do the Black Canyon of the Yellowstone! Be back in a few, if you have more Pictured Rocks questions.

  13. #13

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Pringles View Post
    ........ When you get to Munising, get a pasty at Muldoons. :-) .........
    great pasty !!!
    If you don't stand for something, you will fall for anything.

  14. #14
    Registered User
    Join Date
    08-12-2009
    Location
    Spring Lake, MI
    Age
    54
    Posts
    1,466

    Default

    As others have said, yes - you need to reserve sites. That means you need to gage your mileage ahead of time. Do NOT OVER GAGE!!! Oh, your other question about bugs! Dang, they were so bad when we went... we cooked dinner and went into our tents immediately. Bugs were out of control... to the point that 100% deet didn't help!!! Thank goodness, I had a mini deck of cards!

  15. #15
    Registered User
    Join Date
    10-17-2007
    Location
    Michigan
    Age
    61
    Posts
    4,752

    Default

    Another literature connection. East of Grand Marais is the Fox River. Hemingway went up there fishing and wrote stories about it. However in the stories he used the Two Hearted River (also east of Grand Marais) because it had a cooler name. That is where we get the name for Two Hearted Ale (from Kzoo) which is about the best American Ale you can buy. Look for it when you are in the area.

  16. #16

    Default

    I have an Original Bug Shirt shirt and pants for hiking during bug season, and take a Thermacell to keep the bugs under control.

  17. #17

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Odd Man Out View Post
    Another literature connection. East of Grand Marais is the Fox River. Hemingway went up there fishing and wrote stories about it. However in the stories he used the Two Hearted River (also east of Grand Marais) because it had a cooler name. That is where we get the name for Two Hearted Ale (from Kzoo) which is about the best American Ale you can buy. Look for it when you are in the area.
    I thought Bell's was in Comstock?....looks at map.... I guess Kalamazoo has suburbs, Comstock being one of them! You are correct sir!

    Other great beers from Bell's:

    1. Lager of the Lakes
    2. Light Hearted Ale
    3. Oberon

  18. #18
    Registered User
    Join Date
    12-15-2011
    Location
    Wheeler,Mi.
    Age
    66
    Posts
    15

    Default

    12 mile is a car campground it requires a different permit than the backcountry sites
    Dogger

  19. #19

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Dogger View Post
    12 mile is a car campground it requires a different permit than the backcountry sites
    Dogger
    The nearest backpacking site is Benchmark.

    You have that you might end at Sand Point. It’s a pretty place. I wouldn’t have thought of that, but it’s nice.

  20. #20
    Registered User
    Join Date
    10-17-2007
    Location
    Michigan
    Age
    61
    Posts
    4,752

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by trailmercury View Post
    I thought Bell's was in Comstock?....looks at map.... I guess Kalamazoo has suburbs, Comstock being one of them! You are correct sir!

    Other great beers from Bell's:

    1. Lager of the Lakes
    2. Light Hearted Ale
    3. Oberon
    I'm in the Grand Rapids area so it's another local brewery for us. I used to do a lot of home brewing back in the mid '80s when Larry Bell ran the only brewery in the area. Back then it was called Kalamazoo Brewery. It was later they moved to Comstock and changed their name. Oberon release day is a major local holiday each spring. Oberon is the best post-lawn mowing beer.

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
++ New Posts ++

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •