2016 was the year I was to turn 60 and my darling daughter and best traveling companion turned 30, so we thought we would mark the occasion with a mother/daughter trip! We asked for advice via Facebook for the best travel destination. We researched areas throughout the United States and ultimately decided we would do the Lake Superior Circle Tour– and we are so glad we did!! We decided that clockwise felt the most natural, so we headed to Grand Marais for our first night of camping. We were certain we would find a camping site, but alas, there were none to be found as multiple summer events were occurring that weekend. On the recommendation of a friend, we pitched our tent next to Lake Superior and had a sleepless night with crashing waves and noisy traffic all night. Alas, no more camping for us despite our best intentions to do multiple camping nights. Day 2, we had a terrific hike on the Cascade River Loop (7.8 miles) and had the World’s Best Donuts in Grand Marais before heading to Thunder Bay, getting a last minute Airbnb there. We set out for the lovely Ouimet Canyon on Day 3, followed by Sleeping Giant Provincial Park and visited the lovely little town of Silver Islet. We stayed that night in Rossport at a lovely inn called The Willows. To note, though, a very loud train goes behind multiple times a night! We ate at a lovely resturant called the Serendipity there. Day 4 started with a visit to a local potter located on a peninsula in Rossport with amazing pottery created in the studio in his beautiful home. The highlight of the day and perhaps the trip was a great hike at Lake Superior Provincial Park. We did the Orphan Lake Trail. So fun. We drove on to Batchawana Bay where we make a fire and cooked our dinner. We pushed on to Sault Saint Marie since again, we couldn’t find a campsite. We laughed when we found ourselves in the semi-luxurious Quattro Inn since we thought we’d be roughing it in a tent that night. Great sleep! Day 5 brought us to Pictured Rocks in Munising, Michigan. We completed the 10 mile Chapel Loop trail and suspected there was a bear nearby– which quickened our pace!! Once again, other travelers had anticipated better a busy summer season which pushed us to Marquette, Michigan late that night to stay at the sweet little Birchmont Motel. It was old school, but clean with comfortable mattresses and a nice view of the lake! Day 6 brought us to the Keweenaw Peninsula where we stayed at a wonderful Airbnb for 2 nights (day 6 and 7) called the LaRose Wellness and Retreat Center, which is right on Lake Superior. Amazing beds, hammocks, spacious yard, kayaks to use (which we did!), pool and sauna as well. We also were able to arrange massages on site. We drove up to Copper Harbor, visiting the Jampot in Eagle Harbor which is run by the Catholic Monastery located there. They have amazing jams and a bakery with all items made onsite. On day 8, we drove to Bayfield and took the ferry to Madeline Island. Had a great lunch at the Farm House. We rented bikes and biked the island up to Big Bay. We had a great Airbnb that night on a small yacht in Ashland. We got pizza, played cribbage and enjoyed the sunset on the boat! What an amazing trip! One of our goals was to see a moose– which we never did! Next time!! We will never forget the Circle Tour 30/60!
Holly & Jenna Schaude, Maple Grove, MN