Sault Ste Marie, MI Friday September 6
Well, we are finally in the UP, or Yooper as we saw on some tourist souvenirs. Before we arrived in the Upper Peninsula, we had to complete our travels in the Lower Peninsula.
After our morning breakfast with the Evergreen group, we left Charlevoix and drove the rest of the northwest corner past Petoskey and up a scenic byway to Cross River. The Cross River section is along a bluff overlooking Lake Michigan and through wooded areas. Petoskey is the center of a resort area, part of which is pretty pricey with the Bay Harbor Yacht Club, the Bay Harbor Golf Club and Bay Harbor Equestrian Center centering the really pricey digs.
The Mackinac (pronounced Mackinaw but you knew that already) Bridge is a five mile suspension bridge connecting upper (the UP) and lower Michigan. As a thing of beauty, it did not overwhelm me. It is four lanes, two in each direction. One lane of each direction is comprised of open steel decking which seemed a bit slippery. The greatest height to the water is 200 feet. It is the fourth longest suspension bridge in the world.
Our Evergreen host had advised that the best pasty (pronounced Passty,not Paistie) can be found at a little hole in the wall a few blocks west of St. Ignace (the town at the north end of the Mackinac Bridge). Pastys are a food supposedly brought to this section of America by miners from Cornwall England.
A pasty is basically a pot pie without the pot. The ingredients of ours were peas, potatoes, carrots, onions, rutabagas, and meat (although vegetarian is now offered for those who disdain tradition). I had beef and Chris had chicken. The ingredients are cooked inside a pastry shell. It can be eaten like a wrap or gyro or with gravy and a knife and fork. It made a nourishing meal for a miner working underground. Other ethnic groups working the U.P. mines copied this food.
We decided to drive west, instead of northeast, to Sault Ste. Marie to see more of the Lake Michigan shore line and to explore more of the U.P. Most of our planned future time will take us along the northern shore by Lake Superior. We headed west for about 50 miles and then went north and east, eventually arriving at Sault Ste. Marie around 5 pm. Rain greeted us about half way through the trip. (By the way, Sault is pronounced Soo but you knew that one already also.)
Dinner was in a small, local cafe (Karl’s Cafe) recommended by AAA, TripAdvisor and the owner of the hotel where we are staying for two nights. The food was very good and for the second night in a row I was able to have chocolate mousse. The restaurant is downtown and one ship went through the lock across the street from us while we were dining. The ship went so slowly a person was able to easily walk alongside it as it went through.
Tomorrow we continue to explore this town and the locks.
Ed and Chris September 6, 2013 10 pm