UP Overland Adventure – Day 3
I didn’t realize I could sleep like a baby with so much noise outside. After the long night of loud sound from the waves and wind, I awoke to find a gorgeous sunrise. Honestly, it may go in the books as one of my favorites. It had warmed up quite a bit an the sun felt great after not seeing it for a couple of days.
We started the day with an excellent breakfast cooked on our new Everest Stove. Even with the wind, this thing blew my old Coleman out of the water. After breakfast, we broke camp as quick as we could so we had some time to get some pictures out of the more exposed part of High Rock point. I was able to get some beautiful pictures of our awesome Tailgater Tire Table for them since they were kind enough to donate one to us for the trip. We were even able to get some drone footage of the Jeeps before hooking up trailers and heading out.
We started back on the same trails we had driven the day before, which were filled with even more and bigger puddles than the day prior. More washed out ruts made for a little flexing fun on the way it. It wasn’t long before we were back in paved roads headed west towards Copper Harbor.
From there we took a cruise down the north side of the Keweenaw Peninsula, which made for some fantastic views of the rocky shoreline. We were also able to stop by a few waterfalls and Michigan’s only active monastery which makes and sells some awesome (but “holy expensive”) jams and baked goods. After dropping $80 on goodies, and a few pictures of the buildings, we drove a couple of hundred yards down the road, where we stopped at Jacob’s Falls for some photos and lunch. Of course, we had to have PB&J with our $12 jar of Black Cherry jelly.
After lunch, we headed back down towards the Houghton/Hancock bridge where we again parted ways with our teardrop trailer buddy, while the other 3 of us got started down the Tom Nichols route towards Mass City. While the scenery on this route was amazing, the trail itself lacked any sort of fun. I guess it is catered more towards snowmobiles and fast driving side by sides, as it was smoother than the paved road I live on. About 80% of the way down the trail we met back up with our 4th member (who ironically could have easily made the trail) and continued the last leg of the journey into Mass City.
Before the trail ends, three very narrow and massive spanning bridges cross over some very deep gorges. I had seen these in videos before but being there in person was pretty awe-inspiring. We took our time going across so we could get some nice pictures and admire the view.
After finishing up the trail, we stopped in Mass City and started searching for a place to camp for the night. Our only stipulation was we wanted to be able to fish. First, we tried a spot on a river I had scouted on Google Earth. No road to be found or any clue that there ever had been. Across the street was a trail that led down to the river but no way we could all fit, and after the rain, it was pretty flooded. We continued south and found an excellent spot on a stocked fishing pond, but it didn’t allow overnight camping even though there were picnic tables and a fire ring.
With limited cell service, we checked out another free campground by Bond Falls, but after arriving, we learned it was only for hiking in with tents. No way our Jeeps and trailers were fitting in there.
With nightfall approaching, we continued to another free campsite. Luckily, nobody was there. There were three nice sites, all in a lovely wooded area. They were big enough that we all fit into one site. There was a small pond, 100 yards from the site, but after 4 of us, fishing didn’t get as much as a bite. It did though make for another gorgeous sunset.
We got a fire going and cooked up some dinner. Had some funny and interesting conversations before running out of beer and calling it a night. Laying in my tent that night, I couldn’t help but notice the quiet. No crickets, no frogs. Nothing. I woke in the middle of the night to hear buddies still laughing at the campfire. Later I awoke again to hearing coyotes miles away that reminded me of some evil witches or something. I never really realized how hard it is to sleep when it is that eerily, dead quiet. Needless to say, I really didn’t sleep much that night.