Saturday, July 16, 2011

Wilderness State Park

We drove just outside of Mackinaw to Wilderness State Park, situated on Lake Michigan. We did more hiking, built fires, saw more deer and watched sunsets.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Mackinaw City

We had originally planned to spend 3 days hiking in the Porcupine Mountains but our time in the motel meant we were able to watch the Weather Channel...which predicted 3 straight days of flood inducing storms in the mountains. As we only had a tent, we decided to abandon our plans and try to find an alternative. We drove 4 hours back to Mackinaw City on the lower side of the Mackinac Bridge.

We found a campground right on Lake Huron and got a spot right on the beach.

We could see the Mackinac Bridge from our campsite.

We were so tired from all the driving that we just sat around, had a beer and listened to classic rock radio.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Pictured Rocks

After two days of camping we thought we would indulge and stay in a little motel before our scheduled boat trip.

Our boat tour was to see the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. It consists of 15 miles of sandstone cliffs along Lake Superior, with segments dating back to the precambrian period. The colours in the clifs are due to mineral seepage that has taken place

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Hiking the Falls

On our 2nd day in the UP (upper peninsula) we hiked from our campsite to the lower Tahquamenon Falls.

We got absolutely eaten alive by mosquitoes, even though it was only 10am!

When we finally emerged from the forest we saw an island with waterfalls on either side of it.

We took a rowboat out to the island to have a closer look...

And on our hike back to the campsite we saw some deer foraging in the woods!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Very long drive

We drove for nearly 6 hours to go up north to go camping. We wanted to spend some time in the upper peninsula. Michigan is the only US state to be divided into two peninsulas - this is because two of the Great Lakes, Lake Huron and Lake Michigan divide the two land masses.

Our first stop was the town of Paradise, just outside of Tahquamenon Falls State Park. Brown bears are populus in the area and many people come here to hunt them.

When we got to the state park we set up our tent.

And then went to see the upper falls

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Visiting Family

One of our first days in Michigan was spent out on the pontoon with family...We just float out on the lake drinking lots of beer, eating lots of snacks and enjoying the sun.

We brought floats so we can just jump off the boat and bath for a bit.

Even my aunt's dog, Missy, enjoyed being out for the day.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Leaving on a jet plane

We woke up at 3:00am to get a taxi to the airport at 4:00am in order to catch our 6:00am flight to Amsterdam. Here is Ricki in the waiting area at Newcastle Airport. The sun is just on the rise.

We had a 4.5 hour layover in Amsterdam so we had to occupy ourselves. Luckily the Rijksmuseum had a small display right in the airport so we got to view some art while we waited.

There was a visitor sign-in book so Ricki signed it to memorialise her trip!

We also spent some time looking around the shop but everything was very expensive - like usual in airports!

We spent the last 2 hours taking a nap at our gate. This was our plane waiting for us to board and take off for Detroit.

After waiting for what seemed like forever, we were finally in the air.

And finally after an epic 8 hour flight, we arrived into Detroit.

Total travel time = 23 hours

Monday, July 4, 2011

Packing for America!

Today we are packing because tomorrow we leave for the American state of Michigan.

Sunday, July 3, 2011


Today we took the train to Hartlepool to go see some family. Hartlepool is famous for an embarassing mix up that supposedly took place during the Napoleonic Wars. A ship crashed off shore and the only survivor was a monkey, presumably kept on board to amuse the sailors. The people of Hartlepool had never seen a Frenchman before so they assumed the monkey was a French spy and they hung it on the beach. To this day, people from Hartlepool are known as monkey hangers.

Ricki posing for a picture with the first mayor of West Harltepool, William Gray

And in front of the art gallery which is a converted Victorian church

Saturday, July 2, 2011


Today was one of the few sunny days we get to experiene in the chilly north of England so we took full advantage of it and sat out in the back garden with cocktails.