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|Number of 5 star ratings (5* yield %)||18 (10.1%)|
Michigan’s Upper Peninsula has long been on my list of places to visit, especially once I heard there were as many as 30 waterfalls to see! The state, known for its beauty and expansive lakes, has over 200 named falls (in truth, some are pretty small). Then, the NY Times featured an article and video on “36 Hours in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.” That article caught my attention too, and after a quick call to my sister, the trip was on!
In preparation, I also spoke to friends who visit northern Michigan regularly and who offered some pointers for a short visit such as mine (4 days, two teens in tow!). After a trip to the state’s Tourist Information Center to pick up brochures and maps, the four of us set out to see the falls. Our first stop was Whitefish Bay, and then on to Tahquamenon (pronounced: te kwa’ men non) National Park and the upper and lower falls. Hope you enjoy these 5* images!
- Tahquamenon Falls (Upper): One of the most striking about Tahquamenon Falls is the beer-like color of the water, especially in bright afternoon sun. The color comes from tannin leached by the wood of hemlock spruce and pine trees in the swamps drained by the river. The water is extremely soft, and as a result, also has a rich foam in the basin of the falls.
- A Whisper From the Grove: I understand the “Prayer of the Woods” has been voiced by many a tree, flora, or other forest inhabitant over the years. I am sure I heard it whispered here among this grove of trees. It said:
- “I am the heat of your hearth on the cold winter nights. The friendly shade screening you from the summer sun. And my fruits are refreshing draughts quenching your thirst as you journey on. I am the beam that holds your house, the board of your table, the bed on which you lie, and the timber that builds your boat. I am the handle of your hoe, the door of your homestead, the wood of your cradle, and the shell of your coffin. I am the bread of kindness and the flower of beauty. Ye who pass by, listen to my prayer: HARM ME NOT”
The poem is said to be over 100 years old, and is posted in many state or national parts. Although its author is unknown, it is attributed to the Portuguese.
- Now Pay Attention, Kids! There is so much to look at in this image. I loved the Mama heron talking to her babies, one of whom is clearly not paying as much attention as the other three. They are surrounded by the seagulls on the pier, seemingly covering every spare inch of the pier and minding their own business. Then there is the seagull flying toward us, in stark contrast to the blackness of the pier support structure. The water of Whitefish Bay and sandy beach in the background, bordered by the trees.
- Alone on the Pier: We walked out to the furthest end of the pier, and enjoyed the view of Whitefish Bay. My niece was drawn to the openness, the expansive beauty of the bay, and the sounds of nature. I love this image because I could tell she found it a peaceful spot to be.
- Black-eyed Susans Galore: Hard not to like the field of vibrant yellow and black of these flowers.
- Tahquamenon Falls (Lower): This water of the lower falls flow into a river and around a small island. The Tahquamenon National Park is heavily forested, and as shown by these beautiful, but imposing trees surrounding the falls
The Upper Peninsula is breathtakingly beautiful. These images are from the first of four days I was there, and was my first true introduction to the U P, as it is called. My previous trip to Northern Michigan was limited to Mackinac Island (Mackinac Island Butterflies and a Lizard — 5* Pix and Mackinac Bridge Walk — 5* Pix) – equally beautiful, but NOT the Upper Peninsula. Hope you enjoy this 5* view.
See more outtakes from the outing by following me on Instagram @eyevpointofview.