Choose Your Pace: Hiking Discoveries Along Lake Superior's Shores
On an at-your-pace exploration on foot, explore the shores of Lake Superior and learn about human and natural history of the region from geology to Ojibwe native culture.
Program No. 21937RJ
8 days
Starts at
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8 days
7 nights
20 meals
7 B 6 L 7 D
Getting There
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Arrival, Introductions, Orientation, Dinner
Marquette, MI
Comfort Suites

Activity note: Walking around hotel

Afternoon: Arrive at the hotel and find your room. The group leaders will lead introductions and go over the week's itinerary so you are comfortable with the outline of the upcoming week

Dinner: We will have dinner at a local restaurant

Evening: Orientation: As you get briefed on the schedule, please know that indicated times are approximate; program activities and schedules may need to change due to local circumstances. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding. Continue getting to know your fellow participants, settle in, and get a good night's rest for the day ahead.

Marquette, Munising, Lighthouse Museum, Sunset Boat Ride
Grand Marais, MI
Beach Park Motel

Activity note: Walking up to 4 miles, Boat Ride

Breakfast: Breakfast at Comfort Suites

Morning: This morning we will explore the wonderful city of Marquette and learn about the local economic and historical ties to Lake Superior.

Lunch: Picnic Lunch

Afternoon: This afternoon we will head to Munising and visit the Lighthouse Museum - a fascinating site, as well as explore the charming town of Munising.

Dinner: Dinner will be at a local fine restaurant

Evening: Tonight we will board a boat to take in a glorious sunset cruise along Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. The perfect way to end the day.

Pictured Rocks Nat Lakeshore, Munising Falls, Miner's Castle
Grand Marais, MI
Beach Park Motel

Activity note: Walking of up to 6 miles

Breakfast: We will enjoy breakfast in town at a local restaurant

Morning: This morning we begin hiking and exploring beautiful Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, a true gem of Lake Superior. We will begin by hiking at Sand Point, and to Munising Falls. Colorful and bold, the Pictured Rocks tower 50 to 200 feet directly from Lake Superior. These sandstone cliffs of ochre, tan, and brown - sandwiched with layers of white, green, orange, and black - stretch for about 15 miles along the lake from Sand Point on the west to just after Spray Falls on the east. The name "Pictured Rocks" comes from the streaks of mineral stain that decorate the face of the weather-sculpted cliffs. Stunning colors occur when groundwater oozes out of cracks and trickles down the rock face. Iron (red and orange), copper (blue and green), manganese (brown and black), and limonite (white) are among the most common color-producing minerals.

Lunch: Picnic lunch

Afternoon: We will continue exploring Pictured Rocks Nat. Lakeshore as we hike to Miner's Castle, the Park's most famous rock and a breathtaking sandstone formation jutting out into the Lake.

Dinner: Dinner in town at a fine local establishment

Evening: Evening on your own to relax

Pictured Rocks Nat Lakeshore, Chapel Rock, Mosquito Beach
Grand Marais, MI
Beach Park Motel

Activity note: Hiking 6 miles

Breakfast: Breakfast in town at a restaurant

Morning: This morning we visit Chapel Falls and Chapel Rock. The Chapel area was named by early European explorers and is found on early maps as La Chappelle. Chapel Rock is a remnant of Cambrian age sandstone. The archway between the rock and the mainland collapsed in the 1940s. It and the remaining arch were carved by Lake Nipissing high waters some 3800 years ago. Chapel Beach is also a remnant of Lake Nipissing, blocking Chapel Creek to form Chapel Lake.

Lunch: Picnic Lunch

Afternoon: This afternoon we will continue along the lakeshore and reach Mosquito Beach. With lucent green waters and soft sands, this area area much prettier than its name suggests!

Dinner: Dinner in town at a restaurant

Evening: We will head back to the motel for a quiet evening on your own.

Whitefish Point Light Station, Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum
Paradise, MI
Magnuson's Grand Hotel Lakefront Paradise

Activity note: Walking up to 4 miles

Breakfast: Breakfast in town at a restaurant

Morning: This morning we will explore Whitefish Point, a historical town on Lake Superior. The Whitefish Point Light, a lighthouse in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, is the oldest operating light on Lake Superior. It is arguably the most important light on Lake Superior. All vessels entering and leaving Lake Superior must pass the light.

Lunch: Lunch at a local brewery.

Afternoon: This afternoon we will visit the Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum. Lake Superior is home to more than 200 shipwrecks. The Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society was founded in 1978 by a group of divers, teachers, and educators to commence exploration of historic shipwrecks in eastern Lake Superior, near Whitefish Point in Michigan’s scenic Upper Peninsula. Today, this non-profit organization operates two museum sites on historic properties: The Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum, Whitefish Point Light Station, Whitefish Point; and the U.S. Weather Bureau Building, Soo Locks Park, Sault Sainte Marie, Michigan. We will also visit Tahquamegnon Falls State Park. Tahquamenon Falls State Park encompasses close to 50,000 acres stretching over 13 miles. Most of this is undeveloped woodland without roads, buildings or power lines. The centerpiece of the park, and the very reason for its existence, is the Tahquamenon River with its waterfalls. The Upper Falls is one the largest waterfalls east of the Mississippi. It has a drop of nearly 50 feet and is more than 200 feet across. A maximum flow of more than 50,000 gallons of water per second has been recorded cascading over these falls. Four miles downstream is the Lower Falls, a series of five smaller falls cascading around an island. Although not as dramatic as the Upper Falls, they are equally magnificent. The falls can be viewed from the river bank or from the island, which can be reached by rowboat rented from a park concession. The island walk affords a view of the falls in the south channel. This is the land of Longfellow's Hiawatha - "by the rushing Tahquamenaw" Hiawatha built his canoe.

Dinner: Dinner in town at a restaurant.

Evening: Settle into Magnuson's Paradise Hotel!

North Country Trail, Boat Ride in locks at Sault St Marie
Sault St. Marie, MI
Holiday Inn

Activity note: Hiking up to 5 miles

Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel

Morning: This morning we will hike a section of the beautiful North Country Trail. The North Country National Scenic Trail, generally known as the North Country Trail or simply the N.C.T., is a footpath stretching approximately 4,600 miles (7,400 km) from Crown Point in eastern New York to Lake Sakakawea State Park in central North Dakota in the United States. Passing through the seven states of New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, and North Dakota, it is the longest of the eleven National Scenic Trails authorized by Congress. Like its sister trails, it was designed to provide outdoor recreational opportunities in some of the America's outstanding landscapes. As of early 2014, 2,730 miles (4,390 km) have been completed. The NCT is administered by the National Park Service, managed by federal, state, and local agencies, and built and maintained primarily by the volunteers of the North Country Trail Association (NCTA) and its partners. The 28 chapters of the NCTA, its 3,200+ members and each affiliate organization have assumed responsibility for trail construction and maintenance of a specific section of the NCT.

Lunch: Picnic Lunch

Afternoon: This afternoon we will take a boat ride on Lake Superior as empties into Sault St Marie, and ride through the lock and dam system that allows navigation between these waterways. A very unique and exhilirating experience.

Dinner: Dinner in town at a restaurant.

Evening: Arrive at the Holiday Inn and settle into your rooms.

Seney National Wildlife Refuge, Back to starting point
Marquette, MI
Comfort Suites

Activity note: Hiking up to 3 miles

Breakfast: Breakfast at the Holiday Inn

Morning: This morning we will visit Seney National Wildlife Refuge. Seney National Wildlife Refuge was established in 1935 as a refuge and breeding ground for migratory birds and other wildlife. The wild land that today is the refuge has not always appeared so wild. This is a land that was once heavily logged, burned, ditched, drained and cultivated. Despite repeated attempts, the soils and harsh conditions of this country would not provide a hospitable environment for sustained settlement and agriculture. So, nature claimed it once again. What was viewed as a loss by early 20th century entrepreneurs became a huge gain for the wildlife, natural resources and the people of Michigan’s eastern Upper Peninsula. Seney National Wildlife Refuge is located in the east-central portion of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, halfway between Lake Superior and Lake Michigan. The 95,238 acre refuge encompasses the 25,150 acre Seney Wilderness Area, which contains the Strangmoor Bog National Natural Landmark. The Whitefish Point Unit of the Seney National Wildlife Refuge is located nearly 80 miles away from the headquarters. This 53-acre tract is renowned for its concentrations of birds during migration. Each year thousands of raptors, passerines and waterbirds funnel through the point, stopping here to replenish energy reserves before or after venturing across Lake Superior. The area is recognized as a Globally Important Bird Area for birds migrating between the US and Canada

Lunch: Picnic Lunch

Afternoon: This afternoon we will drive back to Marquette.

Dinner: We will have our last dinner together in Marquette at a restaurant.

Evening: Tonight your guides will wrap up the week and ask others to share their highlights from the journey. Closing comments.

Breakfast, Depart.
Marquette, MI

Activity note: minimal walking

Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel.

Morning: After breakfast, we'll say goodbye as you depart on your way home or for your next adventure.

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