Sept 14, 2008
We had a very easy-going and low-key day today. We woke up late, and I dawdled around reading brochures and trying to think what we might like to do today. The original leading contender was a glass-bottomed cruise to look at underwater shipwrecks in Munising Harbor. But neither of us was that excited about it, even though it was the one "major thing" left to do in Munising, and had gotten good reviews. So we left the campground late, and headed over to the Miner's Castle Overlook inside the National Lakeshore area. It was only a short paved trail to the overlook, but we (and Roxy) enjoyed it.
The weather today was much breezier and cooler than yesterday--and Lake Superior showed it! We saw whitecaps everywhere, and there were waves crashing into the cliffside beneath us as we looked over the edge of the guard fence. We could hear the booming sounds of the waves inside the caves which, since we'd seen them yesterday from the boat, we knew were there, probably about 150 feet down. By looking straight over the edge, I could see the colored rocks right below my feet with the white of the waves shining against them.
The view was nice, though, and we could also see down along Miner's Castle Beach, although I couldn't take any good photos of it because of the trees in between. I had been thinking we'd take the path down there, but Joe said, "Are you crazy? It will be freezing!" It was actually pretty cold--I was wearing 3 layers of long sleeves, including a warm sweatshirt, and it wasn't too much! We definitely lucked out taking our boat trip yesterday--I am quite sure that today's boat did NOT enter that small Chapel Cove--the boat would have been smashed against the walls of the cove and become another Lake Superior shipwreck legend.
After our hike, we came back to Mo and had soup and sandwiches for lunch. It was still only around 1:30 or so, and my itinerary was sketchy for the rest of the day. I knew we were going to drive to Sault Ste Marie, but that was only about a 2 or 2.5 hour trip. I was feeling lazy. So we stayed in the parking lot at the Miner's Castle, and I read a book, and Joe did a few repairs on the RV that he'd been wanting to try. Specifically, he thinks he fixed that electrical problem that kept blowing the 30 amp fuse (which happened again first thing this morning as we drove out of our campsite...we hadn't even gone 25 feet, but the combination with the wipers blew the fuse again.) He also replaced one of our clearance lights.
At about 2:30 we finally decided we were ready to move again, and we drove the 120 miles or so to Sault Ste Marie, MI. The Soo is up at the north-eastern tip of the UP, and is the location for the Soo Locks, which carry ships between Lake Superior and Lake Huron. We are at a campground which lacks much charm--it is basically a flat field. BUT, it is located RIGHT on the St. Mary's River, and we are lucky enough to have a waterfront site. So maybe 20-30 feet away is the river itself, and Canada is right across the river. The locks are about 1 mile upriver from us. We have had several tankers and freighters pass us, most of which have blown their horns! I just heard one long and two short--our campground brochure tells me that this is a "Captain's Salute". He was answered by a similar salute, so I suppose two ships were passing in the night outside my windows. A huge difference from last night's secluded woodsy campsite. (Another difference--this campground seems lots more crowded than most we have been to so far.)
I am very excited about tomorrow--we will be taking a boat trip through the Soo Locks, sailing on both lakes Huron and Superior, underneath the International Bridge, and learning all about the shipping traffic. We will also be going up a 20 story tower to overlook the locks from higher, and we can go to the park that is right by the locks, also. Unfortunately, the weather is supposed to be cooler--only into the high 50's--but there is less chance of rain. So we will bundle up. The Soo Lock boats have an inside, but I will probably be outside snapping photos for all I'm worth.