Onward to Part 3!
So as we were sleeping that night in Munising, we awoke to the sound of pinging and plunking noises. They started getting more frequent and louder in volume. It sounded like a steel drum band was having a concert right on our campsite. When I peaked out the window, there was no steel drum band, but rather a HUGE thunderstorm coming in and millions of raindrops bouncing off the metal panels of our home. The wind and rain were fierce! In the morning, this is what our view looked like:
Luckily we stayed nice and dry inside our van, though the poor folks in tents did not fare so well. Most of the tents were flat on the ground and sitting in large pools of water.
Sid didn’t really mind since he just ate his breakfast in the car instead of outside. But little did he know he’d have to soon run out in the monsoon to do his business (He was not happy about this!).
The wind and rain did not abate so we decided to leave our campsite and hit the road towards the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. We were hoping to do some more exploring there, and possibly a kayak trip to see the enormous striped cliffs along Lake Superior, but the weather was not cooperating. We were still able to drive to a few lookout spots to see some of the wonder of the lakeshore.
The rain eventually subsided, so we were able to explore a bit at the north-east end of the park. Here’s a shot of the lovely Sable Falls.
As we continued on, now back in the van, the pavement started getting very rough and then suddenly it just ENDED! I kept rechecking the map to make sure we weren’t lost, and sure enough I had missed a small detail that explained that the dashed line we were now riding on was an “improved” road which really dirt and/or gravel. Well, add some heavy rain to an “improved” road and you end up with mud. Lots of it!
We bounced and splashed along for many miles – not sure when, or if, we were ever going to see pavement again. I laughed out loud every time we made it through a huge puddle – it was pretty thrilling and the forest around us was really breathtaking.
I’m not sure how we survived but we did eventually reach pavement again. Our pristine white van was now a brown splattered mess. It was ok though because all the vehicles up there looked exactly the same way. Now we finally fit in!
When we arrived at our next campground, Sid didn’t want to emerge from his bed-cave – for fear of getting soaked or splattered with mud.
He eventually came out when he saw I was whipping up some food.
Our campsite at Tahquamenon State Park was really lovely and was right in the heart of the lower falls!
We’ll see you next time in Part 4, when we actually visit the falls up close and Sid rides in a boat!